Action Steps

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Clean hard surfaces with a mix of laundry detergent or dishwashing soap and water. You may have to scrub with a brush. Rinse the area with clean water and dry quickly by wiping away the water and using a fan. Chlorine bleach will kill mold growing on surfaces. It does not kill mold spores in the air and dead mold can still cause allergic reactions. If you use bleach, follow these steps:

• Scrub the surface first with water and detergent.

• Water down the chlorine bleach—use about one cup bleach to ten cups of water.

• Spray or sponge the bleach on the moldy area. Leave it on about 15 minutes, then rinse the area and dry quickly.

• Never mix chlorine bleach with products that contain ammonia or acids because you will make a deadly gas.

• Keep chlorine bleach out of the reach of pets and children.

• Remember, chlorine bleach takes the color out of most fabrics and rugs. Be careful not to spill or splash.

The Cooperative Extension Service or your local or state health department can provide more information on mold. Renters should talk to their landlords. Some home insurance policies will pay to fix mold damage. Fire and Water Damage Restoration professionals can help you fix the damage. Cleaning up a big mold problem may cost several hundred dollars or more.

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