Spring is here and summer is fast approaching. You want to ensure your clothing stays clean and free of mold smell or otherwise odorless. Did you keep your spring wardrobe in boxes all winter? Mold spores might have found a host in your damp clothing, and it will release a foul odor as soon as you open it.
Still, there is hope! Whatever the cause for odor lingering in your apparel, there are several tried and tested tips for how to get rid of mold smell. Aside from commercially available cleaners, several non-toxic household items are effective against mold and its odor.
How Do You Treat Musty Towels and Clothing at Home?
1. White Vinegar
White vinegar is one of the most effective household ingredients used for stain and odor removal. It can also help clean detergent and hard water build-up on fabrics.
Be sure to use the right type and amount of detergent when you wash your clothes and towels. Any residue will trap moisture, making your clothes and towels smell like mildew.
A common method to teach yourself as you learn how to get musty smell out of towels is to replace your fabric softener with white vinegar in the rinse cycle. Add one cup per load for top load washers and ¼ to ½ cup for front loaders.
Others wash their musty towels in hot water with a full cup of white vinegar and no detergent to remove the odor.
2. Baking Soda
Another classic odor remover is baking soda. This can be sprinkled directly into a washing machine filled with clothes and towels. Use ¼ or ½ cup of baking soda per load and then rinse using white vinegar.
Experts recommend pre-treating heavily soiled, musty towels and clothing with borax.
To do this, soak the garments in a tub of hot water and ½ cup of borax for one hour before washing them as normal.
4. Enzyme Odor Removers
Since sweat and body odor are also responsible for musty smelling clothes and towels, you can try using enzyme cleaners.
Most local farm store products have heavy, perfume-like scents. If this troubles you, BioKleen is a good alternative because it is odor-free.
5. Laundry Enhancers
Have you tried using a laundry enhancer before? If not, give it a try because the results are nothing short of amazing. Your garments will smell clean, with no perfume added.
You may have to do at least 2 washes to remove the odor completely. One good brand for this is EnviroKlenz.
6. Direct Sunlight Exposure
If the weather will allow you to do so, always dry your clothes and towels under direct sunlight. Sunrays will kill microbes causing mold smell, and a breeze will help improve airflow to all the nooks and crannies of your clothing.
However, the downside of using the sun is its bleaching effect. Over time, your clothes may lighten, making them look old. Sunlight may also damage some fabrics with repeated exposure. It can tear synthetic fibers in the same way it makes plastic brittle.
The odor removal power of the sun works best on natural fibers like cotton.
How to Get Rid of Mold Smell in the Closet?
What should you do when your clothes and towels smell musty in the closet? While you can take everything out for washing, you still need to address the root cause of the problem, or they’ll just get stinky again.
Open the doors of your closet to increase airflow. Louvered doors are better than solid woods because they allow ventilation. You can also use a tiny fan and direct it to your closet. Allowing air to get in and out will help prevent the growth of mold and odor.
Check the corners of your closet. These spots are notorious for harboring mold and mildew. Use an all-purpose spray cleaner when you tidy the area.
In severe cases, you will have to work with a mold remediation team. Mold spores do not just make your garments musty; they can also cause serious health problems!
Mold is no fun when it gets into your home and on your clothing. Follow these tips to remove mold smell quickly at home. The faster you act, the more successful your attempts will be. If you cannot remove the odor on your own, contact a professional laundry service.
Kelly’s Dry Cleaners in Durango, CO is open daily except for weekends from 9 AM to 6 PM. Call us anytime at 970-903-1642. Our Farmington, NM branch is open Monday through Saturday. Call us at 505-564-3333 for your laundry needs.