Pros and Cons of a Radiant Heated Bathroom Floor

Mildew! The uninvited guest in the party that is your bathroom. Where theres moisture, however, there will be mildew, so its a common issue in bathrooms throughout the Toronto area. Once it pops up, it can be frustrating to figure out how to get rid of it, as well as keep it from coming back. If you just ignore it, mildew will continue to grow and spread. The best way to take care of mildew is to clean it up as soon as you spot it. But what is mildew? Is it mold? Can it make someone sick? And whats the best way to remove it? Lets take a look at this pesky little fungus and talk about how to rid our bathrooms of it.

Why Does Mildew Grow?

Mildew thrives in environments where it stays warm and damp, which means that a shower is like a mildew wonderland. Youll notice mildew popping up along grout lines in your shower, under loose grout (where water has crept), as well as in areas of your shower where water pools or doesnt dry properly. While mildew is a fungus and so is mold, the two are not the same.  

Does Mildew Cause Damage?

Mildew is a surface fungus, which means that it doesnt typically do damage to bathroom surfaces. Well discuss tips for effectively removing mildew from your tile, tub, or shower. Although mildew doesnt typically cause huge health issues the way mold does, some people can be allergic to it and can have breathing problems, a sore throat, coughing, or headaches as a result of being exposed to it. For this reason, its a good idea to nip mildew in the bud as soon as you notice it popping up.

How Should You Remove Mildew?

Especially if youre allergic to mildew, wear a mask to avoid breathing in any of the spores as you clean. Mildew comes off of most surfaces rather easily. In fact, you can use a scraper or screwdriver to gently scrape at a mildew-covered surface, removing the offending fungus. After youve removed the bulk of it, youll need to mix up a mildew-attacking cleaning solution. 

Wear gloves before preparing the solution. Also ensure that you have good ventilation (both because youll be working with bleach and because you want to air out all mildew spores that float free). Mix four cups of water with a half a cup of bleach. Add in your favorite detergent and stir the whole batch up until it foams a bit. Now, youre ready to scrub! Pour a bit of the solution onto the mildewy areas and let it sit for a minute or two. Grab a no-scratch sponge and scrub away any remaining mildew spots. The detergent will help clean and refresh the entire area and the bleach will kill off any lingering mildew spores. Rinse and youre done!

Preventing the Return

If you have caulk thats old, loose, or improperly installed, the only way to prevent moisture from getting underneath it and causing a fresh outbreak of mildew is to rip it out and redo it. Another cause of mildewparticularly if youre noticing it pop up on your bathroom wall or ceilingis improper ventilation or air conditioning thats not working well to air things out and cool things off. Check to ensure that your vents are blowing properly and that your bathroom is receiving proper airflow.

If you have any further questions about mildew in your bathroom or need help repairing, updating, or replacing bathroom features or fixtures, contact the team at Kitchen and Bath.

Additional Articles about Bathroom Renovation: