Mould isn’t just a cosmetic issue in the home, it also happens to be a serious health hazard. Mould can exacerbate respiratory issues such as asthma and bronchitis, so it needs to be dealt with before it gets out of hand.
While there are some very effective mould removal methods out there, they only work if you know where the mould in your home actually is. Unfortunately, not all household mould lives on walls and tile grouting.
Here are eight common hiding places for mould — so you can ensure your home is always free from this potentially dangerous hazard.
1. Refrigerator seals
When was the last time you stood on a stool and took a look at the top of your fridge doors. The seals in these doors are hiding places for food and moisture, which means they’re also hiding places for mould. Remove the mould before it causes any permanent damage with paper towels and a weak solution of bleach and water. Alternatively, use a dedicated mould removal agent or a handheld steam cleaner.
2. Washing machine seals
Open the door of your washing machine, and pull back the rubber seal. If your machine is reasonably well used, there’s a good chance that you’ll seen an accumulation of mould. The combination of heat and a perpetual supply of moisture makes this area particularly susceptible, so make sure it is cleaned regularly.
When you wash your clothes, you need to dry them as soon as possible. The best way to do this is on a clothes line in the fresh air. If you don’t unfold washed garments and allow them to dry (or throw them straight into a tumble dryer), you’re creating the perfect growth conditions for mould.
4. Electric toothbrush
The void between your electric toothbrush and the removable head provides perfect growth conditions for mould. To prevent nasty accumulations from occuring, always store your toothbrush in an upright position — in a cool, dry area of your home. However, you can remove the brush head and clean the affected area in seconds, so mould never has to be an issue.
5. Kids’ toys
If you have babies or toddlers in the house, you’ll know that just about everything ends up in the mouth, sooner or later. If the items in question are toys, cavities may eventually become covered in mould. A constant supply of saliva, a warm house and the confined space of a toy’s cavity combine to create perfect mould growth conditions.
6. Childrens’ cups
Non-spill cups are great for precocious, adventurous children, but they have been susceptible to mould growth in the past. In 2016, a major manufacturer had to recall millions of sealed drinking cups because mould was forming in the valves. Dry your child’s cup after every use, and store it in a cool, dry place between uses. It’s also a good idea to inspect the spout and the valve regularly.
7. Toilet cisterns
Take a moment to lift the your toilet cistern’s lid, and take a peek inside. Check to see if there is any mould around the stopcock or any of the other internal mechanisms. Also, check the lip of the cistern and the lid itself. Cisterns offer ideal growth conditions for mould, yet many of us are completely oblivious to the threat.
8. Coffee maker
If you’re not cleaning and drying your coffee maker after every use, you could be promoting mould growth. You also need to make sure that your coffee brewing equipment is stored away in a cool, dry place between uses. If you ever notice mould growth, try brewing a batch of water and white vinegar before rinsing and drying thoroughly.
Mould can grow almost anywhere in your home, so stay vigilant and ready to take action when necessary.