Moldy bathroom sealant can ruin the aesthetic of any washroom. The mold is especially obvious as it contrasts with the glorious bright white of your bathroom silicone and tiling.
Bathrooms are super moist rooms, with heavy condensation, spills, leaks, and general moisture. Therefore, it’s a great place for mold to grow and fester. Silicone sealant is the adhesive between tiles, appliances, and flooring, acting as glue.
Sealant is usually white but can quickly darken in color and grow mold spots if not cared for properly. We’ve researched the best ways to prevent mold growth on silicone and how to fix it after it’s already grown. Keep reading to learn how to deal with moldy silicone in your bathroom.
Dealing with mold growth in a bathroom is pretty tricky. Fortunately, you can prevent mold growth in a bathroom with a few easy steps. First, improve ventilation in the space by opening windows or turning on the extractor fan.
Secondly, invest in a high-quality sealant if you’re re-sealing a room or installing a new installation. Thirdly, ensure the item you’re sealing is secured down, as movement will eventually encourage cracks and mold. Fourthly, clean regularly to keep on top of the spores. And finally, invest in a dehumidifier.
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Why Does the Silicone Grow Mold?
Before we fix the problem, it’s always a good idea to first identify the cause. For example, silicone sealant is waterproof, so in an ideal scenario, mold shouldn’t grow on the surface of the silicone. However, silicone can crack and tear through time and wear, losing its waterproof surface layer. Thus, allowing water to penetrate and encourage mold growth.
Alternatively, if the silicone is applied around an appliance, such as a shower door, the appliance might shift and move over time. Unfortunately, the movement can damage the seal and create small gaps for water to get in, thus allowing mold to grow.
Another cause of silicone mold growth is that the air in the room is simply too damp too often. Bathrooms are steamy, damp places with tonnes of moisture in the air. Furthermore, bathrooms can be quite hot, and humid. If the bathroom has poor ventilation, for example, no window or an ineffective extractor fan, moisture will not be able to escape.
The 5 Best Ways to Prevent Mold Growth on Silicone Sealant in Bathroom
- Improve ventilation in the space
Mold grows in moist, damp areas. If the entire bathroom is humid and wet, the changes in mold growth are incredibly high. So, try to remove as much moisture in the air as possible.
This can be easy or difficult, depending on the space you have. If you have a window, try to open it every time you shower or have a bath, to help the steam escape. Additionally, try to turn on the extractor fan every time you shower and leave it on for a little while after you have finished showering.
If you don’t have an extractor fan, it’s worthwhile installing one. They aren’t very expensive but can be a bit tricky to fit, and you may need to hire a professional.
However, dampness can cause long-term structural damage to the walls and ceiling, as well as the silicone, so it is worth the investment. If you’re staying in a rented apartment, have a discussion with your landlord about the problems you’re facing, as it’s in their best interest to prevent the problem before it becomes unfixable.
Check out the link below to buy a bathroom extractor fan:
2. Use a better sealant
Poor-quality silicones will crack and wear away faster, so it may be worthwhile to replace the sealant altogether. If your sealant is in bad shape, you may consider cutting out and replacing the sealant.
When re-sealing the room, invest in a higher quality silicone. Yes, it will be more expensive initially, but it will save you money in the long term. Better sealants will be more resistant to movement and will be better at expelling moisture for longer.
You can buy a silicone sealant like the following one. Look for high-quantity silicone sealant with mold-repelling properties.
3. Improve method when sealing
The method you use to apply the silicone sealant is important. Essentially, you want to seal something that will not move. Otherwise, the sealant will shift and crack. So try to secure the item down first as best as possible, such as the sink or the bath. Glue or screw the item down first to ensure it doesn’t move. Then, seal with sealant.
Invest in a dehumidifier for the space to suck moisture from the room. Dehumidifiers are great for improving air quality and can be used in any room. Alternatively, you can invest in some plants that are good for air purification, plus they look nice!
Check out the link below to buy a dehumidifier for the bathroom.
5. Clean regularly
Mold can be easy to remove if cleaned regularly, but once the mold embeds itself or grows too much, the sealant won’t be cleanable. So try to clean the sealant every week with some bleach spray, vinegar, or baking soda to keep on top of things.
How to clean mold on silicone sealant in the bathroom
Some sealants will be too moldy to recover, but others can be revived with a good cleaning. Before resorting to any drastic measures, try deep cleaning the sealant as best as you can.
What you’ll need:
- Distilled white vinegar.
- Baking soda.
- Cloth or rag.
- Stiff-bristled brush.
- A sponge.
Buy some baking soda in bulk for a variety of cleaning and cooking purposes:
White distilled vinegar:
Buy some microfiber cloths in bulk:
Steps to follow to remove mold for silicone sealant in the bathroom:
- In a bowl, combine 1 cup of white vinegar with three teaspoons of baking soda. Stir to combine. Don’t worry; any fizzing is normal.
- Scoop some of the mixture out, and smear it onto the sealant. Be generous, and lather the areas.
- Distribute the paste with a cloth, to make sure it is all covered.
- Leave the paste to get to work for 5-10 minutes.
- Then, grab a striff-bristles brush and scrub the paste into the sealant. Scrub until most of the paste has dissipated.
- Wet a sponge, and wipe away the remnants of the sealant.
- Assess the appearance of the mold, and if some remains, repeat steps 1 to 6.
- Now, with a bleach spray, liberally spray the sealant. Or, make your own bleach spray by combining one part bleach with four parts water, and applying it to the sealant.
- Wash away the bleach with some clean water.
- Dry the area with a clean cloth or towel.
Mold is not only unaesthetic but is dangerous to inhale. Most people will have to deal with mold in the moist areas of their homes, especially those that live in damp or humid climates.
To keep mold at bay, ventilate the space with open windows and extractor fans, and invest in a dehumidifier or some air-purifying plants. If you’re re-sealing a room, first make sure the item you’re sealing is secured down properly and that you’re using a high-quality sealant. Finally, clean regularly to keep on top of it.
Last update on 2024-03-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API