White Mold: Dangerous? How to Identify & Remove

You might’ve recently noticed that white mold is growing around your house and on the food that you eat. It can grow on porous surfaces such as wood, carpet, bread, and many more places. Mold needs moisture and oxygen to reproduce, both of which are present all over your house

So, is white mold dangerous? Yes! As with any other type of mold, white mold is unhealthy to breathe and live around. Contrary to popular belief, almost any type of mold can appear white. The surface that it’s growing on, pigmentation of the spores, and several other factors determine the color of mold.

The rest of this article will cover some essential topics related to identifying and removing white mold. 

  • Finding white mold on your food
  • Identifying and removing white mold around the house
  • What the presence of white mold means

You will learn:

  • You can identify white mold by its fuzzy texture and white color.
  • If you see white mold on food, throw your food away.
  • White mold commonly grows on tile, carpet, and wood.
  • White mold also grows in air conditioners, vents, and windows.  

Finding White Mold on Your Food

We’ve all seen a bit of white or green mold spotted across a piece of cheese or a slice of bread. It can also grow on fruit, meat, and various other foods found in your pantry and refrigerator. 

There’s a question that we’ve all asked but been afraid to find an answer to: can you consume food with mold on it.

If you only see mold on a particular part of bread or cheese, you might be inclined to cut it off and continue to eat the food. Many people feel that this is an adequate way to deal with the problem since the mold is supposedly gone. However, mold tends to dig deeper than the surface of the food.

As mentioned previously, mold loves to buildup in porous areas. These spaces allow spores to grow and stretch their roots throughout the material, expanding the food that it can eat. When mold begins to grow on your food, it goes much deeper than the spores that you see. You might think that you’ve cut it out, but it can be resting out of sight in the middle of the food.

Keep in mind that mold starts on a microbial level, meaning that you won’t always be able to see it. Although you’ve cut it off, there could be remnants left behind that you can’t see without a microscope. Despite their small size, these spores can be potentially dangerous and make you very sick.

In short, finding white mold on your food means that it’s time to toss it out. Unfortunately, there’s no saving that whole loaf of bread or block of cheese once a spot of mold spores starts to colonize on the surface. Why risk it when you can eat something else and not get sick? Once you’ve spotted mold, move on to something else!

Identifying White Mold Around the House

Mold can grow all over the place in any structure, houses included. Whether it finds a home in the grout of the tile or the corner of a wooden post, mold can grow nearly anywhere. 

It often starts to grow around window sills since they tend to have condensation and dark crevices. We don’t notice the sill growing mold because it’s not a common spot to look.

Dealing with Mold on Wood

Wood is often one of the easiest places for mold to grow. Since it’s porous and generally thicker than other materials, wood offers a great home for white mold to start right away. 

Unfortunately, it can be harmful to your health and bad for the wooden surface. Once the mold eats away at wood long enough, it can become brittle and break quickly.

However, you can stop white mold in its tracks with the following instructions:

  1. Mix half a cup of bleach with 1 quart of warm water. 
  2. Spray the solution directly onto the mold and scrub it into the wood with a brush.
  3. This scrubbing process will push the bleach and water into the wood, killing off any spores that are deep underneath the surface.

Getting White Mold Out of Carpet

Using a couple of household items, including white vinegar and baking soda, you can eliminate white mold in under an hour. Here’s how:

  1. Mix half a cup of white vinegar with 1 cup of warm water in a spray bottle and evenly coat the surface of the carpet. Remember that mold spreads under the surface, so it’s a good idea to expand the area that you spray.
  2. Scrub out the white vinegar solution with an abrasive sponge to remove it from the fibers of the carpet. 
  3. Lightly sprinkle baking soda across the carpet. Baking soda is abrasive as well, so it’ll clean each fiber. 
  4. Vacuum the baking soda away after 5 minutes of letting it sit. For the best results, try using a steam vacuum cleaner.

Removing White Mold from an Air Conditioner, Air Vents, and Windows

Three ingredients are all you need to create a spray that’ll take out white mold growing in and around air conditioner units, air vents, windows, and so on. The ingredients are as follows:

  • 2 cups of warm water
  • 2 drops of dish soap
  • 1 cup of bleach

And here’s the cleaning process:

  1. Mix these ingredients in a spray bottle and coat the surface. 
  2. Let it sit for a few minutes. 
  3. Scrub it away with a sponge or a brush. 
  4. Follow it up by drying the surface with a few paper towels to prevent moisture from lingering too long in the area.

When you’re focusing specifically on an air conditioner, you need to make sure that you’re getting the entire surface. This includes the grates that might be a bit difficult. Try using a small travel toothbrush or damp paper towels to get in between the hard-to-reach area. You can also use these tools for windowsills.

Removing White Mold from Mold-Resistant Paint

Since mold can grow all over the place, homeowners are beginning to lean towards mold-resistant paint. This paint naturally prevents mold from growing and forming spores, slowing down the process dramatically. 

If a small amount of mold begins to grow, you can quickly scrub it down and kill the white mold using a combination of bleach and warm water.

Although mold-resistant paint might be a bit pricey compared to traditional paint, many people find that they save money in the long run. You don’t have to buy all the extra chemicals and tools that are required to take mold away. It’s also a healthy convenience not to have to breathe in white mold spores as it grows microscopically.

What Does the Presence of White Mold Mean?

When you see white mold growing, it simply means that moisture is somehow present in the area.

White mold is harmful. In fact, all mold is harmful to a degree. Regardless of if it’s brown, white, black, red, or one of the various other colors of mold, you need to remove it as soon as possible. 

When white mold starts to grow on white paint and other light surfaces, it can be hard to distinguish. However, you can use a test kit that comes with drops to identify mold right away. The liquid changes color when it comes in contact with mold, allowing you to stop the problem in its tracks.


Here are the key points you should take away from this article:

  • You can identify white mold by its fuzzy texture and white color. If you see it, you need to remove it immediately. 
  • If you see white mold on food, throw your food away. Even if you scrape all of the mold off, some harmful remnants may remain. 
  • White mold commonly grows on tile, carpet, and wood. You can clean the mold off of these surfaces using common household items. 
  • White mold also grows in air conditioners, vents, and windows. You can use a bleach and water mixture to remove it. 

D. Hahn

DIY guru, dad, husband, blogger. When I'm not creating life hacks I'm teaching my kids how to fix stuff after their dad breaks it.

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