What to do about mold on bathroom ceiling
May 14, 2019 10:30 AM   Subscribe

We have a ceiling fan but still have mold on our ceiling. Photo here.

How do I get rid of it? Spray something on it? Paint it with something? Call someone in? Snowflake - we are a low chem house generally for health reasons - is there any "safer" way to get rid of it? I have googled and I see different options listed as "the best" option, so I feel a bit overwhelmed/confused. Thank you!
posted by anya32 to Home & Garden (8 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
I would spray it with a bleach solution and then use Kilz as a primer before painting again.
posted by tman99 at 10:35 AM on May 14, 2019 [3 favorites]

Is your ceiling wet? What’s above that room? I would want to be sure there’s not a roof leak somewhere before going the bleach/Kilz route.
posted by little mouth at 11:59 AM on May 14, 2019

Response by poster: It is attic space above the bathroom. The ceiling does get wet from time to time when we need to take a "steam shower" for a kid with congestion. We always run the fan and open the window afterwards. This is not a daily occurrence by any means.
posted by anya32 at 12:17 PM on May 14, 2019

Starve the mold for water. Take a sponge mop and wipe the ceiling after the steam baths. I use vodka to dry out molds, Trader Joe's Citrus. Very inexpensive. In addition to running the fan and opening the windows. If you can squeegee the shower walls that works really well---and keeps mold off the grout.
posted by effluvia at 12:26 PM on May 14, 2019 [1 favorite]

Use a dedicated anti-mold spray. That stuff is magical. I lived with a moldy ceiling in a poorly-ventilated bathroom for YEARS and then I bought an $8 bottle of anti mold-spray (Home Armor Instant Mold and Mildew Stain Remover, if my Amazon history is to be trusted), sprayed the bathroom down once (no wiping or anything), and basically solved the problem forever. I think I might have sprayed like once a year after that, just in case. It smells awful but wow, does it work.
posted by mskyle at 12:49 PM on May 14, 2019 [3 favorites]

Wipe down with a diluted bleach solution once in a while, and do what you can to limit moisture in there (fan, open windows, etc.).
posted by wenestvedt at 3:14 AM on May 15, 2019

Make sure the attic space above the ceiling is adequately insulated. Also make sure that the exhaust fan in the bathroom is actually venting to correctly (ideally, it's hooked up to rigid metal vent pipe, and exhausting through the roof, not into the attic space).

Also consider getting a dehumidifier for your home. I'm in the PNW and run a dehumidifier about half of the year. If I didn't, I'd have mold issues like this.
posted by bennett being thrown at 4:12 PM on May 15, 2019 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: I really wanted to avoid the anti-mold spray but we were going away and could keep the bathroom ventilated with no entry for five days. It worked like scary chemical magic and we have a small dehumidifier now running. My fingers are crossed and I’ll use the less toxic approaches for maintenance. Thank you all so much!
posted by anya32 at 4:49 PM on June 13, 2019

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