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Project Guide - Mould

What is Mould?

Mould is a type of fungus that grows in the presence of moisture.  It will typically appear on bare and painted surfaces in a variety of colours ranging from white, green, dark grey, dark green, black or brown. Not only is mould visually unpleasant and can cause stains on your surface, if left unattended too long it is quite damaging to our health and will require swift action after discovered.

Why does mould occur?

Surface mould is a pretty common household issue. In order for mould to grow, mould spores need to be present. The mould will reproduce in ideal conditions, including areas that:

  • receive little to no sunlight
  • are damp, wet or moist
  • experience higher levels of humidity
  • do not have adequate air circulation/poor ventilation.

Severe mould issues are generally caused by more serious issues including water leaks in pipes or roofing, recent flooding, and water pooling in the foundations of a house. While the appearance of severe mould can be treated, if it recurs regularly it is important to have the cause of the mould more seriously evaluated.

How to Prevent Mould

The paint system alone cannot prevent mould returning, as the mould is a result of the environment in which the paint system has been installed. Mould cannot grow in dry and brightly lit areas, so improving ventilation and light are an important step in preventing mould from becoming a problem.

Keep windows and doors open as much as possible and try using a ventilation fan to remove steam from wet rooms. It’s also important to clean surfaces regularly as this will prevent the mould spores taking hold and forming a colony. 

Removing mould

Mould can be removed from the affected surface with a product called 30 Seconds Mould-Off. Rubber gloves and eye protection should be worn when using this product. It’s very difficult to remove mould from porous surfaces like bare plasterboard, so these surfaces may need to be removed. For the best course of action here, we would recommend heading in to your nearest Inspirations Paint store to discuss the mould issue you are having with our expert staff (We'd also recommend bring in pictures of the affected area). 

Preparing the Surface 

Once the mould has been removed, leave the surface to dry completely and make sure the source of moisture has been treated to prevent mould returning. Ventilate the area well before painting. If the surface has an existing coat of paint, ensure the surface is sound for re-painting by performing a cross-hatch adhesion test. If the exisiting coat is sound, clean and free of mould, we'd recommend using a mould-resistant paint (such as Dulux Precision Advanced Mould Blocker). Mould resistant paints contain antimicrobial ingredients that help prevent the growth of mould on painted surfaces.

If you're preparing a bare substrate, leave the surface to dry completely and make sure the source of the moisture has been treated to prevent mould returning. Once the surface has been prepared, try using a prepcoat with mould-blocking properties, as well as a mould-resistant top-coat. Where gap sealant is to be used, we also recommend using a quality product that is also mould resistant.

Safety Warning

It is important to treat the mould-affected area as soon as it is discovered, as mould is a health hazard to humans. Mould can contribute to respiratory difficulties including sinus problems, asthma and pneumonia; and can also cause or heighten rashes, skin conditions and headaches.

Due to the health hazards associated with mould, it is always important to ensure that you are wearing the appropriate protective equipment including gloves, eye protection and dust mask when dealing with mould affected areas of the home.

Mould colonies growing on external cladding.