How To Remove Mildew from Wood

Kalpana Kumari Jan 9, 2019
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Wondering how to remove mildew from wood? Here are some effective methods for this purpose. Use any one of them to get your wooden windows, furniture, and flooring to look spotless and new.
Mildew is a type of fungus that grows in warm, damp, and humid places, and feeds on organic matter. You may find some types of mildew growing on inorganic matter like vinyl or aluminum sidings. It creates a thin, particularly colored splotchy coating. The commonly seen colors are black, white, gray, red, pink, green, blue, and brown.

Ill Effects

  • Mildew increases the chances of wood rot occurrence.
  • You generally get to see mildew growing on your wooden furniture, making it look ugly.
  • Not only does it harm the furniture, but also tends to deteriorate the cushions, awnings, and other materials made of fabric and canvas. You can easily identify such a damage caused by mildew by the presence of holes in the cushion covers and other similar items used for home furniture.
  • Its excessive growth on wooden floors makes them extra smooth and slippery. Thus, you are always at a risk of slipping and falling, whenever you walk on such affected floors.
You can put an end to such damages by stopping the growth and development of mildew at an early stage.

Removing Mildew from Wood

Method 1

  • Wash the affected wooden furniture or flooring with a steel wool/sponge and soapy water. Rub gently as the purpose is to remove mildew without marring the surface. You should use a special wood soap.
  • Rinse the area with plain water, and allow air drying of the surface. This will kill most of the mildew.
  • Make a solution of bleach and water in a spray bottle. Spray it on the cleaned and dried area to remove any residue.
  • Allow the sprayed solution to air dry. When dry, wash the wood again with sponge and soapy water. Rinse with plenty of water, and let it dry in the sun.
  • Check for any moldy presence. If you find it, repeat the process to get rid of it entirely.

Method 2

  • Make a solution of borax and hot water in the ratio of 1:4.
  • Dip a sponge in this solution, and rub it on the mildewed wood.
  • Allow the application to set for about 7-8 hours.
  • Take a steel wool, and scrub the layer off with plain water.

Method 3

If you have unfinished or unpainted wooden furniture, you can use ammonia for this purpose.
  • Make a solution with a bucket of water, a cup of ammonia, ½ cup of white vinegar, and ¼ cup of baking soda.
  • Wash the wooden article with this solution and a sponge thoroughly.
  • When done, wash with plain water, and allow air drying.
The aforementioned three methods are very effective, and sure to deliver results. However, you may find some patches on the surface that get overdone, and fade a bit. You can apply a layer of wood paint or stain to make them match with the original color. 
Select any of the suggested methods to suit your need, comfort, and availability of resources. The result will be worth your effort, and your wooden article will be restored to its previous condition.