Concrete surfaces are prone to mold which can spoil the appearance of the patio and make the area slippery and slick. Especially critical areas are those around the pool, which are becoming older-looking, moldy and dirty under the influences of continuous humidity and often spilling of greasy matters from food or sunscreen.
Mold is considered not very easy to remove and that’s why most of the people turn to harsh chemical cleaners. This is damaging, not only for the plants surrounding the pool, but for the air too. There are, however, ways to remove this hazard from your patio, without negatively affecting the environment.
One of the most efficient ways of cleaning concrete surfaces of mold is with tap water and high pressure to blow of any traces of dirt and mold from the area. Though it’s recommended to set the sprayer to most concentrated nozzle mode, you should keep in mind that when the stream is too concentrated it can leave marks on your patio. When using this way of cleaning, you should sweep the wastewater into sump pump or suck up the water with a vacuum cleaner.
Organic household cleaners
Surely, somewhere in your kitchen shelves you have products that are efficient in cleaning the mold. Due to the fact that some of them may be dangerous for the plants and cause respiratory problems (ammoniac), you should be extremely careful and whenever you can opt for organic solutions, such as bleach, vinegar and borax. You can apply these cleaners on the surface with a brush and then rinse it with tap water.
Steam cleaning is a great way to get rid of persistent mold problem without any damaging influences for the environment and your health. Recently I had a chance to try a Steam Australia industrial steam cleaner and realized that not only it is extremely easy to operate but it is killing mold more effectively than a pressure hose. You can simply watch as the dirt is being blown away with jets of steam. All it takes is to rinse it with clear water. Make sure that during the process you wear protective shoes and clothing.
Eco-friendly cleaning products
For persistent mold you’ll have no choice but to opt for commercial chemical cleaning products. Before you decide for some of them, make sure they are pH-neutral, without pesticides and volatile elements and biodegradable. Saying it shortly – environmentally-friendly. The downside of this way of cleaning is that most of these products can be very expensive if you need to treat bigger surfaces.
This is a non-toxic, affordable and eco-friendly way of killing the mold. Essential oils such as grapefruit seed extract and tea tree oil are natural fungicides. To make the most out of them, you’ll need to spray them (mixed with water in specific proportion) on moldy surface without rinsing. Have in mind that tea tree has a specific and strong smell which can last up to several days.
Dry ice blasting
This is a relatively new technology which is gaining more and more attention among cleaners who are concerned about the influence on environment. The high impact and the low temperature of dry ice can remove mold in the same way as water jets. There is no need for additional scrubbing and chemicals. It doesn’t produce mold-rich leftovers in the form of dust and because of it it’s 100% safe for the environment.
Regardless of which method you choose to keep the environment safe, remember that you should protect yourself too, by wearing rubber gloves and a mask and in some cases even protective shoes and suit.