Drew Frye

Why Not Try Do-It-Yourself Mildew Preventers?

Experts recently made a pleasant little finding when they were investigating and checking various anti-mildew protectants. A couple of inexpensive do-it-yourself concoctions did as well as or better than market solutions which are 20 to 100 times more costly. Now this was not a big a surprise for the team of experts, who based the homebrew solutions on a few of the more efficient anti-mildew products from former tests.

The 13-product evaluation field consisted of liquid sprays, and gels and solids which work through producing a vapor. The three vapor products were Star brite’s NosGUARD SG, which reacts with water in order to release chlorine-dioxide gas; Forespar Tea Tree Power, a tea tree oil-based solution in a vented tub; and Pur-A-Fy Air from Nature’s Innovative Solutions, a lemongrass oil-based gel.

The liquid-spray group included Forespar’s Tea Tree Oil Spray, Henkle Chemical’s Renuzit, Siamons Concrobium, Goldshield, and 3M’s Marine Mildew Block, that performed effectively in our June 2010 test. Concrobium is readily available in liquid as well as vapor form; we tested the liquid. Our most efficient commercial product, Goldshield 5 (diluted to the equivalent of Goldshield 75), is an quaternary ammonium formula established by scientists at Emory University. As our dehumidifier field examinations demonstrated, the first line of defense is controlling humidity. One thing I have touched on in previoius blog articles about combating mildew. When it comes to sealed lockers, or tight quarters which are challenging to treat or ventilate, you may additionally wish to look at our report on chemical dessicants like DampRid.

The two do-it-yourself spray formulas we evaluated each cost about one penny per ounce. Just like the additional mold preventers in our test, you make use of those as cleansers by simply spraying the product on, cleaning any type of excess away, and leaving it on. Before applying to any fabric, test the spray on an inconspicuous sample area.

Formula A.

1 quart hot water.

1 tablespoon baking soda (sodium bicarbonate).

2 tablespoons washing soda (sodium carbonate).

2 tablespoons trisodium phosphate (TSP) 5.

Similar To Concrobium (which it is actually designed after), our homemade Formula A removed the mildew and mold from test carpeting on board and kept it away, even though the spot got moist again. It was also extremely effective in the moist-environment lab test.

Formula B.

1 quart hot water.

2 tablespoons baking soda.

2 tablespoons Borax.

1 tablespoon TSP.

Formula B was actually the second-place performer in the fluid group. It was definitely the very best value. It cleaned effectively, protected against mildew and mold from coming back to the carpet, and significantly slowed down mildew contamination in the moist-environment test in the lab.

We also had a go at treating with plain vinegar, which apparently works on some hard surfaces, but testers found the smell a little too overwhelming. A 10-percent solution of household bleach (3-percent sodium hypochlorite) was one of the best cleansers, but this has to be used with care. Bleach will bleed or degrade many fabrics, and could damage the marine environment.

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