How to Clean Mildew from Drywall
LESLIE: Talking to Laura in Indiana. What’s going on at your money pit?
LAURA: Well, I have a small bathroom that when we – my son is the only one that takes a shower in there and I used the correct wall – the drywall, when we built it; the green wall – the wallboard.
LESLIE: The greenboard.
LAURA: But it still has slight mildew at the top; at the top of the ceiling and the top of the wall. I used some bleach water; I wiped it; I rinsed it and it still forms. And he does not always use his exhaust fan in there. Is that (INAUDIBLE)?
LESLIE: That’s the problem.
TOM: Yeah, I was going to say is he a teenager? (Leslie chuckles)
TOM: (laughing) Yeah, sure thing. Well, as Leslie said, that is the problem. Couple things you can do to control humidity. First of all, you really do need to use the exhaust fan. What you might want to think about doing here, Laura …
LESLIE: Is it too late to wire the light and the exhaust fan together? (chuckling)
TOM: (overlapping voices) That’s exactly what I was thinking. Yep. That’s exactly what I was thinking.
LESLIE: This way you’re forcing him to use it.
TOM: Yep. Wire – and a lot of fans and lights can be set up this way very easily so that whenever you turn the light on the fan comes on. The other thing that you can do is put in what’s called an ox sensor, which is basically an automatic switch so that whenever there’s movement inside the bathroom the fan comes on. You’ve got the right tools. You just need to get him to do it.
Now, in terms of what you can do to the existing surface, you are doing the right thing by cleaning it. I would recommend that you use a product called Simple Green, which is very effective at removing mildew and removing mold first and then you really want to prime that surface. Use a good quality primer like a KILZ oil-based primer and then on top of that use a kitchen and bath paint and Behr makes one with NanoGuard technology that’s very, very effective at reducing mold and mildew growth.
LAURA: OK, so instead of using bleach water use Simple Green?
TOM: Simple Green. Yep.
TOM: Works good and it’s much safer, too.