Facts about Mold:
Should I use bleach to clean up mold?
The key to mold control is moisture control. Scrub mold off hard surfaces with
detergent and water, and dry completely. Fix plumbing leaks and other water
problems as soon as possible. Dry all items completely.
Absorbent or porous materials, such as ceiling tiles and carpet, may have to be
thrown away if they become moldy. Mold can grow on or fill in the empty
spaces and crevices of porous materials, so the mold may be difficult or
impossible to remove completely.
Do not paint or caulk moldy surfaces. Clean up the mold and dry the surfaces
before painting. Paint applied over moldy surfaces is likely to peel.
Biocides are substances that can destroy living organisms. The use of a chemical
or biocide that kills organisms such as mold (chlorine bleach, for example) is not
recommended as a routine practice during mold cleanup. There may be instances,
however, when professional judgment may indicate its use (for example, when
immune-compromised individuals are present). In most cases, it is not possible
or desirable to sterilize an area; a background level of mold spores will remain -
these spores will not grow if the moisture problem has been resolved. If you
choose to use disinfectants or biocides, always ventilate the area and exhaust the
air to the outdoors. Never mix chlorine bleach solution with other cleaning
solutions or detergents that contain ammonia because toxic fumes could be
Please note: Dead mold may still cause allergic reactions in some people, so it is
not enough to simply kill the mold, it must also be removed.
Eliminating Floor Squeaks can be problematic when the space underneath is
finished and you don't have access to the floor joists or subfloor. When wooden
floorboards are causing the noise, add a dry lubricant to the problem area.
Sprinkle lock lubricant, talcum powder, or powdered graphite into the joints
between the floorboards. Then place a cloth over the boards and walk back and
forth to work the powdery lubricant down into the cracks. This will reduce wood-
on-wood friction between the planks and silence small squeaks. Finish by using a
vacuum cleaner or damp cloth to remove any remaining powder from the floor.
If that doesn’t work, try spraying a dry silicone lubricant between the squeaky
floorboards. After spraying, wipe off any excess lubricant with a slightly
dampened cotton cloth or paper towel.
Repairs from under the floor:
If you do have access from underneath the floor: Either, shim the area where
squeaking, apply construction adhesive to the area, nail a 2” x 4” along the edge
of the floor, add blocking (Wood brace between the joists) or drive a small
screw just deep enough from the underside into the subfloor & hardwood (Drill a
pilot hole first).
Carpet Stain Removal:
When a stain or spill first occurs, resist the urge to immediately start scrubbing.
That’ll only drive the stain down into the carpet. Instead, gently dab stains with a
cleaning solution and a clean cloth, paper towel, or sponge. The key is blotting.
Blotting puts a small amount of pressure on the stain, so you can soak it up.
Rubbing causes the particles to get ground into the fibers, which can lead to the
premature breakdown of those fibers. Always blot from the outer edge of the
stain inward toward the center; blotting outward can spread the stain further
across the carpet.
You may have heard that you can use club soda to remove beer and wine stains
from carpeting, which is true—if you use it correctly. First, pour club soda onto a
clean cloth and blot the stain. If the stain appears lighter, repeat with more club
soda. If that doesn't work, mix a one-to-one ratio of white vinegar and water, and
pour it into a handheld spray bottle. Spray the solution onto the stained area and
then wait 10 or 15 minutes for it to soak in. Next, press a clean, dry sponge down
onto the saturated area to soak up the cleaning solution and the diluted stain, too.
Repeat this process, if necessary, until the entire stain is gone. Once you’ve
removed the stain, rinse the spot with clean, warm water. Use your hand to brush
the carpet strands into their natural direction. Finally, lay several white paper
towels over the area and weigh them down with something heavy, like a phone
book. The towels will absorb the dampness from the carpet; leave them in place
until the carpet is dry, usually about one day.
Greasy spills are some of the most difficult to remove from carpeting, but again,
the secret is to use the proper product and technique: Place a few drops of grease
cutting dish soap, such as Dawn, into a cup of warm water. Gently mix the
solution to dissolve the soap. Pour the solution into a spray bottle and soak the
greasy stain. Then blot it up with a white cloth or paper towels. Depending on the
size and age of the stain, you may need to repeat this treatment multiple times.
Few carpet stains are as obvious or unsightly as blood. But suffering a paper cut
on your finger and getting a few drops on the carpet doesn't mean your carpet is
permanently stained. Hydrogen peroxide should get out blood. First, loosen up
dried blood with water mixed with a mild detergent. Then use a butter knife to
scrape off as much blood from the fibers as possible. To remove any residual
blood, apply full-strength hydrogen peroxide directly to the stain. The solution
will immediately start to foam and fizz when it contacts the blood so don't be
surprised. Wait a few minutes, then blot up the hydrogen peroxide and remaining
blood with a white cotton cloth or paper towels.
If you live with pets, it’s only a matter of time before one of them has an accident
on the carpet. We prefer using organic cleaners, such as Eco-88 or ZorbX, rather
than caustic chemicals. Spray the cleaner directly on the stain. You’ll probably
have to do some scrubbing to remove all the staining and odor, but then wipe up
the cleaner with a white cloth or paper towels. Note that these nontoxic cleaners
can also be used to remove other types of stains, including coffee and sauces.