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What Is the Difference Between Mold and Mildew?  

Dec 15, 2016

Mold and Mildew

The terms mold and mildew are thrown around a lot, but do you really know the differences between the two? There are some important distinctions, including one that can have some serious ramifications for your health.

Mild Mildew and Marauding Mold

Both mildew and mold are types of fungi. Mildew often takes the form of a grayish, powdery or fuzzy substance and appears in moist areas like bathrooms and on moist surfaces like clothes that were washed and not dried properly.

Mold is often black or green and tends to cover larger areas than mildew. You’ll find mold, but not mildew, in walls, for example. Mold can be mild and easily cleaned off, but some varieties of the fungi have stronger, harsher effects on people, often making them sick.

Cleaning Confusion

Both mold and mildew can occur on the same surface. How many times have you looked in your shower and seen black spots on the wall tiles? While many might call that mildew because of its location, the black color indicates that it’s mold.

For most situations where you have mildew or mold on a surface, you can use similar tactics to clean it away. Commercial mildew removers that contain bleach are very effective, but harsh. White distilled vinegar or chlorine bleach mixed with water can also be very effective. A note of caution: Never mix vinegar and bleach.

By the way, that pinkish mildew you see sometimes? That’s actually bacteria, and not mildew or mold. Luckily, commercial mildew cleaners that contain bleach often get rid of it as well.

If you’ve been having trouble getting rid of mildew or mold, or you find that a few spots have quickly grown into a field, contact ServiceMaster of Spartanburg. We can handle tough jobs quickly and thoroughly, returning your home to a healthy state.

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