How to Deal With Mold from a Leaking Water Heater
One of the main causes mold in any home originates from the water heater. Mold created by a water heater will not just ruin the cabinet the water heater is housed in and the surrounding plumbing fixtures, but it can also create health problems for all the individuals living in your home if it remains. To avoid the growth of mold, you need to find and locate the source of mold, which is more often than not, from a leak in the water heater. Once the leak is located, even before cleaning the mold from the area, call a local licensed plumber to fix the leak because an ill-repaired DIY job to fix a leak can cost you more money in the long run if you need to replace your water heater in the future. Once the leak in the water heater is repaired, you also need to get rid of the mold. A plumber can give you tips on how to remove mold.
Even before getting rid of the current mold, get rid of any standing water that is in the area of the water heater. You can wipe it away with a dry towel but this is a good preventative measure to take because any remaining water can still cause mold in the future.
Buy an ordinary spray bottle and a pair of gloves (the ones used for washing dishes are perfect for the job) from any local store and pour inside a mixture that consists of three parts water to one part bleach. Take this water and bleach mixture in the spray bottle, and spray the mold. Do not just lightly spray the mold but thoroughly saturate the mold. Put on the gloves and take a scrub brush to wipe away the mold. After brushing, any remaining mold should be wiped away using a damp cloth.
Spray the area a second time with the water and bleach blend and wipe again with a cloth, making sure that all traces of mold have been gotten rid of and then wait for the spot to dry all the way. Do not close the door to the water heater and place a regular home fan directly on the area of the water heater.
When the area is entirely dry, take some tape (like painter’s tape) and mark the places in the region of the water heater that should not be painted. Once this is marked off, paint the area with a mold-proof paint. It will kill off any existing mold spores that are still hanging around and also prevent future mold growth from occurring. A second coat of paint is not needed. After the paint is dry, the cabinet doors can be closed.
After a few days, have a plumber or a mold inspector come to take a look at the area to make sure that the mold is completely gone from the water heater.
Make regular checkups with a plumber to monitor your water heater to ensure that another leak will not happen.