Trask Research, Inc.
|Mold in Your Car|
How to Get Rid of Mold in Your Car or Automobile
By: Jim Dobbins, Sr. Mold Remediation Specialist
CONTAIN- the mold from spreading into uncontaminated areas;
KILL- the mold;
REMOVE- the dead mold and materials used for remediation; and
PROTECT- the cleaned out area against future mold infestations.
Mold in the automobile is a top concern for motorist. The mold from your car may have infected your car's ventilation system which can blow mold spores throughout your entire automobile. Often this can lead to severe mold allergies and other mold health related problems.
IDENTIFY THE SOURCE OF THE MOLD
First thing to do is to find out why you have mold in the first place. Sometimes weather seals and gaskets on a car's door and windows can erode over time and allow moisture or water into the car. This is very common in older antique or restored vehicles, or vehicles allowed to sit for long periods of time.
The other common area for mold infestation is the car's ventilation system generally caused by blocked or clogged water lines from the car's condenser unit.
How to remediate the most common situations:
MOLD IN THE CAR CAUSED BY A LEAK
First fix the leak that caused the mold. Once the leak has been repaired, then you can treat the area with Oxy-Mold MX-500 fungicide.
You can use a steam cleaner such as a "Bissel" with a fungicide registered with EPA for this application injected into the carpet and then use the suction to remove the excess water. Some steam cleaners use a shampoo concentrate pulled directly via a hose into the unit, others use pre-mixed shampoo. Depending on which type of cleaner you have will determine if you use the fungicide without dilution or with dilution. Treat as mentioned above and allow this to dry, then treat one more time. In general this should correct the mold problem. Some auto carpets may still have to be removed or replaced under severe mold conditions. Some seats may also have to be treated with product if they are cloth. Always do a small test spot on leathers before full-application.
MOLD IN THE AIR CONDITIONING SYSTEM
Fix the problem that caused mold in the A/C system first. Sometime the problem can not be identified, but a mold smell emanates from the A/C system. Often an air conditioning drainage line is clogged and can easily be fixed by you or an experienced auto mechanic. Once this or other air conditioning water problems have been fixed then you can "fog" the ventilation system by using a paint sprayerand a fungicide registered with EPA for this application spraying it into the car's air intake for the air condition system which is generally on the engine side of the car. Since every car is built differently you will have to do some investigating to find this intake. Once you have located it remove any filter and then you can spray the fungicide into the intake while the A/C blower is on full-blast. This will allow fungicide to be pulled into the car's vent ducting system and kill the mold and mold spores present in the car. This may have to be done several times and in some cases have to be done on a maintenance type basis.
I CAN'T IDENTIFY THE SOURCE OF THE MOLD
In this case you can shampoo all of the rugs and car seats (if they are cloth) with the fungicide using a steam cleaning machine and fog the air condition system as mentioned above. This may have to be done a several times or on a maintenance basis in severe cases.
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