Whether it's part of a water leak within your home or a late discovery in a thrift store find, you have a challenge on your hands if you want to remove mold from upholstered furniture. Fabric is porous, which means that mold spores can grow deep roots into it, and they can also quickly spread throughout the fabric as long as moisture is present. You'll need to thoroughly clean your furniture in order to fully remove the mold, but that has risks if you do it on your own — here's why it's best left to mold remediation experts.
1. Cleaners May Ruin the Fabric
When you look up advice for how to remove mold from upholstery, you'll doubtlessly see suggestions to use mold removers such as bleach or rubbing alcohol. On most surfaces, these cleaners work well to remove mold. However, both of them are solvents — it's not a good idea to use them on upholstery. They'll cause dye to detach from the fabric, so using them will result in very noticeable discoloration.
Vinegar is another mold remover that's commonly recommended, but this can also damage fabric. Vinegar contains a small amount of acetic acid. While this acid is weak, it can damage the fibers that comprise the fabric in the upholstery. It causes the fabric to become coarse and frayed, so it feels rougher to the touch.
Professional mold remediation services have access to dry cleaning chemicals that will destroy mold without damaging or discoloring your upholstery. You'll be able to remove the mold from your furniture without negatively affecting its appearance.
2. You Risk Spreading Mold Around Your Home
Whenever it's disturbed, mold will release spores into the air. This is how mold naturally reproduces and spreads — animals touch moldy surfaces, and then spores are released into the wind. You certainly don't want this to happen in your home. Cleaning your furniture without isolating it can spread mold spores onto your drywall and into your air vents, worsening your mold problem.
When mold remediation services remove mold from a home, they set up negative pressure rooms using fans in order to isolate the area that they're cleaning. Under negative pressure, air will always flow into the room rather than out of it. Any airborne mold spores are easily contained, which prevents mold from spreading throughout your home during the cleaning process.
3. Mold Spores Can Propagate Within Your Furniture
Most upholstered furniture pieces have frames made of wood, and wood is an excellent location for mold growth. Wood needs to be finished in order to provide water resistance and mold resistance, but much of the wood used to construct furniture frames is unfinished. Finishing the wood would add cost with little benefit — it's not visible and is very unlikely to be exposed to water.
When you start trying to remove mold from furniture, however, you'll be using cleaning products that contain water. If water seeps into the wooden frame, it becomes a suitable place for the spreading mold spores to land and take root. Once mold begins to grow on the wooden frame of upholstered furniture, you've spread the problem and made it worse.
Overall, removing mold from upholstery is a challenging process that's best handled by experts. If you have a mold infestation on a piece of furniture, call mold remediation contractors — they'll meticulously remove all of the mold from your furniture without damaging the fabric or spreading mold throughout your home.