Mildew in your home is not just an eyesore. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it’s also a potential health and environmental hazard. Mildew is a mold that usually thrives in moist, damp, and humid areas in your home, usually bathrooms, kitchens, laundry rooms, and basements. Mildew can also cause severe damage to your home, such as wood rot, if not addressed immediately. If you see signs of mildew in any or all of these areas, the best painting contractors near me can get rid of mildew and even prevent it from coming back.
While getting rid of mildew is doable, how about preventing it from growing and thriving again? That may seem impossible at first. But fortunately, the latest in paint technologies has paved the way for so-called “specialty” paints, including mildew-retardant paint.
In the very early stages of mildew, most homeowners would try wiping the mildew with bleach. However, mildew may grow again – and unfortunately, it often does. You may have to take a step further by applying a coat of mildew retardant paint.
What is mildew retardant paint?
As the name indicates, mildew retardant paint is a specialty paint that can prevent mold or mildew from growing and thriving your interior and exterior walls. The paint contains a mildewcide that you won’t find in regular paint.
Mildew-resistant paints are best for areas where mildew persists, despite your best efforts to get rid of them with household bleach.
Of course, before applying mildew retardant paint, you must get rid of the mold first and keep the surfaces clean and dry.
“Can I paint over mildew?”
Yes – you can if you want to. But is it encouraged? No.
Painting over mildew will only lead to more significant problems. Eventually, mildew specks will come out through the new topcoat and may even spread faster. It will only waste your time, effort, and money.
If you believe that mildew retardant paints will eliminate the problem, they won’t. Once again, such paints prevent the problem from growing and thriving on the surface. However, they won’t kill off existing mildew. So, don’t even think of dabbing a coat of mildew retardant paint over those black mildew patches.
If you see signs of mildew, you must deal with it right away before it bursts into a bigger problem. Getting rid of mildew is crucial, whether you (or your family member) have or don’t have health sensitivities.
Here’s the usual way to get rid of mildew:
- Try to find the root of the problem – the culprit may include a leaking roof or pipe. Without seeing the source of dampness or moisture that attracts mildew growth, you won’t be able to stop it.
- Prepare a solution by adding one part household bleach to three parts dish detergent.
- Scrub the affected surface with the solution and let it set for around 15 minutes.
- Rinse the surface thoroughly and let it completely dry.
But if you’re dealing with severe mildew infestation, consider these steps:
- Clean the area very thoroughly. If you are dealing with mildew on the exterior wood siding, have the area power-washed or use a commercial cleaner.
- Rinse the surface and allow it to dry.
Mildew-resistant sealant or primer?
Once the surface has completely dried, the next step is preventing mildew from returning and thriving on your walls. The next dilemma is whether you will prime or seal the walls before painting.
It might be impossible to remove all the mildew – despite your diligent cleaning. In that case, applying a mildew-resistant sealant before painting sounds like a good idea. It’s actually a process called “encapsulation,” which can seal any fungus that cannot be removed, preventing it from growing and spreading.
It is excellent if you choose to apply a mildew-resistant sealant instead of primer. Nonetheless, coating your walls with a mildew-resistant sealer is only usually encouraged if you can remove all existing mildew. You don’t want to replace the wall, either. Thus, consider this method if you don’t have any other choice.
Is mildew retardant paint worth it?
If you are constantly cleaning your walls, only to have the mildew return every time, mildew-resistant paints may be worth the cost. On the other hand, if you’ve only had to clean away mildew at one time, and it has never come back, you might be better off. Make sure to keep the walls extra clean and sanitized before investing in mildew retardant paint. The best painting contractors near me will help you choose the best brands for mildew retardant paint.