Black Mould on Windows: A Guide to Removal & Prevention
Black mould on windows around your home is the last thing you want to see. It can not only damage your windows but can cause some serious health problems too.
Find out why it's appeared, what you can do to remove it and how you can prevent it from ever making another appearance.
Black mould on windows – why does it happen?
Any kind of mould is bad for the overall health of anyone living with it, but black mould is especially concerning. This type of mould is known as 'Stachybotrys Chartarum' and is known to form where there are excessive amounts of moisture in the air.
Black mould is known to produce a damp smell and can spread across paint, wallpaper and plaster, with the potential to cause serious problems with respiratory health.
It's important that you don't ignore even the slightest sign of black mould around your windows, or anywhere else in the home for that matter.
Some common causes of black mould in households are:
- Damaged roof or window frames allowing rain in
- Inefficient heating system
- Leaking pipes
- Taps, baths and showers
- Rising damp.
Is black mould dangerous?
Mould can be very harmful to your physical and mental health, particularly if you already suffer from asthma, eczema or respiratory infections.
Mould spored release toxins, known as mycotoxins, which when breathed in can cause damage to lungs, skin and the nervous system. As well as those who already suffer from respiratory or skin problem, those most susceptible to the effects of mould are babies, children and the elderly.
Preventing mould on windows
There are 2 leading contributors to black mould forming around windows or on window sills: leaks and condensation.
If water is leaking from the outside onto the window sill, then it's likely that the window frame is damaged and needs repairing or replacing altogether. When it comes to condensation, it's all about reducing the amount of moisture in the air around your home, and there are several things you can do:
- If you have single-pane windows, replace them with double or triple-glazing which are both much more resistant to black mould.
- Keep the window vent (trickle vent), found at the top of windows to let in air from the outside, open to ensure maximum ventilation throughout the home.
- Make use of extractor fans when cooking in the kitchen and washing in the bathroom.
- Move houseplants away from the windows as they release moisture into the air.
- Purchase a dehumidifier which will extract moisture from the air.
- Open up your windows to keep your home well ventilated – only when it isn't too cold though.
So, whether you've discovered black mould around uPVC, timber or aluminium windows, by adopting the above advice, you'll greatly reduce the risk of mould returning to the area.
How to remove black mould
Before looking to remove the mould, you should find the cause as it will only keep coming back otherwise. When it comes to black mould around windows, a common cause is damage to the frame.
You should contact a professional to either repair the window frame or carry out a replacement, depending on how severe the case might be.
You can remove mould yourself but the NHS recommend to only do this if the mould covers an area smaller than 1 metre squared. If the mould has spread beyond this or the cause was found to be anything to do with sewage or contaminated water, always contact a professional.
Before starting, protect yourself by wearing goggles, rubber gloves and a mask that goes over your mouth and nose. It's also a good idea to open up the windows for ventilation but keep doors closed to prevent spreading.
What you'll need: A bucket, washing up liquid, rubber gloves, goggles, a mask, 2 rags, a plastic bag and either cleaning wipes or a hoover.
Step 1: Fill a bucket with water and washing up liquid
Step 2: Dip a rag into the soapy water and wipe. Don't brush the mould around as this will cause it to spread.
Step 3: Once removed, use the dry rag to wipe the damp area of the wall and remove any moisture.
Step 4: Throw both rags away.
Step 5: Wipe down or hoover the surface where the mould had been.
If there were any clothes or soft furnishings in the area where the mould had spread, then you should put them into a plastic bag and take them to be professionally dry cleaned or throw them away if you'd rather.
How to remove window mould with vinegar
When aiming to get rid of mould around your windows using vinegar, you should always wear gloves to avoid irritation.
Step 1: Fill a spray bottle with white vinegar. Alternatively, wet a cloth with the vinegar and wipe.
Step 2: Thoroughly spray the vinegar over the mould.
Step 3: The vinegar needs time to break up the mould so leave if for 1 hour.
Step 5: Use a scrubbing brush and warm water to scrub away the mould.
Step 6: Wipe the surface down using warm water and leave the area to dry out.
If the mould reappears, try the whole process again. You might also want to combine vinegar with other products such as baking soda or salt to increase your chances of successful black mould removal.
Wooden window mould
Mould on a wooden window frame can gradually lead to it deteriorating. Wood holds onto moisture, making it the ideal material for black mould to form and grow.
To combat this, you might want to consider painting or staining the wooden frames and giving the joints of the frames a good clean to ensure they're free from dust and moisture.
Get free window quotes for repair and replacement
If one or more of the windows around your home are letting in moisture that keeps leading to mould then you should hire a professional to repair or replace them.
Complete our simple online form with details of the work you need and we'll put you in touch with trusted window installers in your local area. You'll be contacted by up to 3 installers who will each provide a quote for the work you outlined in the form. This allows you to compare the quotes and give you the greatest chance of finding the best deal for your home.