bathroom mold
Click here for Top Ten Discussions. CLICK HERE for Q & A Homepage
Receive Free Rental Owner Updates Email:  
MrLandlord Q & A
bathroom mold (by Tony [NJ]) Apr 21, 2022 7:40 PM
       bathroom mold (by Laura [MD]) Apr 21, 2022 7:45 PM
       bathroom mold (by Richard [MI]) Apr 21, 2022 7:54 PM
       bathroom mold (by Jo [CT]) Apr 21, 2022 8:02 PM
       bathroom mold (by zero [IN]) Apr 21, 2022 8:13 PM
       bathroom mold (by Robert J [CA]) Apr 21, 2022 8:33 PM
       bathroom mold (by BillW [NJ]) Apr 21, 2022 8:37 PM
       bathroom mold (by Vee [OH]) Apr 21, 2022 8:47 PM
       bathroom mold (by RB [TN]) Apr 21, 2022 9:04 PM
       bathroom mold (by Gene [OH]) Apr 21, 2022 9:25 PM
       bathroom mold (by Hollis [MA]) Apr 21, 2022 10:17 PM
       bathroom mold (by Robert,OntarioCanada [ON]) Apr 21, 2022 10:39 PM
       bathroom mold (by Small potatoes [NY]) Apr 21, 2022 11:32 PM
       bathroom mold (by Small potatoes [NY]) Apr 21, 2022 11:34 PM
       bathroom mold (by Hoosier [IN]) Apr 22, 2022 9:23 AM
       bathroom mold (by MikeA [TX]) Apr 22, 2022 10:00 AM
       bathroom mold (by Busy [WI]) Apr 22, 2022 11:31 AM
       bathroom mold (by Busy [WI]) Apr 22, 2022 11:49 AM
       bathroom mold (by Dee Ann [WI]) Apr 23, 2022 8:33 AM
       bathroom mold (by Dee Ann [WI]) Apr 23, 2022 8:34 AM
       bathroom mold (by Busy [WI]) Apr 23, 2022 1:51 PM
       bathroom mold (by Jim [OH]) Apr 23, 2022 5:14 PM
       bathroom mold (by del [MD]) Apr 23, 2022 10:14 PM
       bathroom mold (by mike [CA]) May 6, 2022 9:45 PM
       bathroom mold (by Still Learning [NH]) May 7, 2022 7:46 AM

Click here to reply to this discussion.
Click Here to send this discussion to a friend

bathroom mold (by Tony [NJ]) Posted on: Apr 21, 2022 7:40 PM

This is really bad. Did an inspection on a 3BR 1bath. Last inspection well over a year ago. I probably deserve a told you so on this one but the problem is major bathroom mold.

It's all surface mold from long showers with the door closed and lack of cleaning habits - not due to roof leak or other causes.

There's no vent fan but there is a working window.

I suggested cleaning walls and ceilings with bleach and water and tenant objected - saying that's a toxic remedy!


Anyway, what cleaning remedy would you suggest with this OCD tenant that they won't object to?

Thanks in advance.

bathroom mold (by Laura [MD]) Posted on: Apr 21, 2022 7:45 PM

My housing code regulations require a bathroom fan.

bathroom mold (by Richard [MI]) Posted on: Apr 21, 2022 7:54 PM

Several problems

1. Check more often! Now go check all the others.

2. Install fan.

3. Tenant allowed this to get this bad. It is tenant's fault and you should charge them every cent to remedy this.

4. Tenant is not a mold specialist. Tenant is not a doctor. Tenant has no authority to tell you what it is or is not or how to go about cleaning or dealing with it.

5. Tenant is now looking for a payday.

In my opinion, you need to go ballistic on the tenant for destroying your property. Sue them (likely small claims) (not that you'll ever collect). Also, GET RID OF THEM. If this tenant cares so little that they allow this to get so bad, they are beyond help or correction. Get rid of them.

Just my opinion here. --24.180.xx.xx

bathroom mold (by Jo [CT]) Posted on: Apr 21, 2022 8:02 PM

There is a product called Mold Control.. It is a concrobium which inhibits mold. You can get it at Home Depot or on line.

I would spray the mold with Mold Armor first, also at Home Depot, then let it dry...this is a heavy duty mold killer...ventilate the room!!

Then spray the Mold Control liberally on the moldy areas...don't wipe it down, not suppose to. Has helped me, good products, but, ventilation is important too in a bathroom.

bathroom mold (by zero [IN]) Posted on: Apr 21, 2022 8:13 PM

I use concrobium as well on 'discoloration' areas. I don't allow the word mold to be spoken because everyone goes straight to toxic black mold even if it is just a little mildew.

If the tenant is spewing stuff about the bleach just use vinegar. Does the same thing without the smell.

With a problem T like that who caused it anyhow I would tell them that you need to do extensive work to remedy the situation. You will not charge them for the error but they must leave and break the lease now. Otherwise evict on the reasons stated above.

Then spray concrobium on everything. Wait until you need to clean, repaint and think about a fart fan if it is easy enough.

bathroom mold (by Robert J [CA]) Posted on: Apr 21, 2022 8:33 PM

An easy way to start the clean up is to purchase Mold Wipes, disposable gloves and a P100 mask. Wipe down all of the mold surfaces several times with clean wipes. Have a thick 4 mil trash bag to dispose of the wipes.

Then wash all of the walls and tile again using a strong concentrated cleaner.

Now that the bathroom is "mold free", you can deal with installing a quite automatic exhaust fan that goes on with the lights. This way your tenant can't forget to turn it on.

bathroom mold (by BillW [NJ]) Posted on: Apr 21, 2022 8:37 PM

If it's on the surface, crack the window and spray Clorox Clean-Up Cleaner Spray with Bleach on the walls and you'll be spic and span in less than an hour, assuming your seeing the same stuff that I get.

They do make wall mounted fans that are easier to install. Also check insulation and air leaks. If you have a cold outside wall you'll get a lot of condensation.

bathroom mold (by Vee [OH]) Posted on: Apr 21, 2022 8:47 PM

Mold Armor is another product to help, it is in quart spray bottles, just spray and let it dry out, leave the window ajar a bit but more important is the damp clothing and towels - basic cleaning and more frequent inspections.

bathroom mold (by RB [TN]) Posted on: Apr 21, 2022 9:04 PM

Tenant lifestyle issue.

bathroom mold (by Gene [OH]) Posted on: Apr 21, 2022 9:25 PM

Take a look at an automatic fan sensor switch which I've installed in almost all my rental properties for this reason. It can be set for whatever humidity level you need for that property. Here is the link to the DewStop fan switch that I found at Home Depot:

It worked so well that when the upstairs carpet was steam cleaned in one property, both upstairs bath fans kicked on to remove the moisture in the air.

bathroom mold (by Hollis [MA]) Posted on: Apr 21, 2022 10:17 PM

Just a point, if there is window, a fan is not mandated,..your rules may be different

bathroom mold (by Robert,OntarioCanada [ON]) Posted on: Apr 21, 2022 10:39 PM

Well a window will work if they open windows where tenants are lazy. Other then putting in dehumidifier the only option is to install exhaust fan connected up to a humidity switch that will turn on exhaust fan when humidity level builds up. Look at the cost of install a exhaust fan and humidity switch then amortize cost over a period of two or three years then next increase rent over 24 to 36 month period to cover cost. Installing a low flow shower will reduce humidity to a lower level. As soon as a rental unit is vacant then discard shower head then in a low flow type of shower head. So if it costs $720 to install exhaust fan and humidity switch then $20 dollars per month more on top of existing rent increase.

bathroom mold (by Small potatoes [NY]) Posted on: Apr 21, 2022 11:32 PM

hand the tenant the concrobium product and tell them to clean up their space. concrobium must be reapplied every time after shower and allowed to dry. could also use wet it n forget it after tackling the issue.

bathroom mold (by Small potatoes [NY]) Posted on: Apr 21, 2022 11:34 PM

hand the tenant the concrobium product and tell them to clean up their space. concrobium must be reapplied every time after shower and allowed to dry. could also use wet it n forget it after tackling the issue.

bathroom mold (by Hoosier [IN]) Posted on: Apr 22, 2022 9:23 AM


May be wise to install the fan and wire it to the light so they HAVE to use it

bathroom mold (by MikeA [TX]) Posted on: Apr 22, 2022 10:00 AM

I would just write up the lease violation with a cure or quit for excessive mildew. It's not up to you to figure out how to clean it up, that's on the tenant. That is until they move out and leave it for you to do then just use Clorox or any similar product.

bathroom mold (by Busy [WI]) Posted on: Apr 22, 2022 11:31 AM

I was glad to read Bill say that poor insulation may also be a culprit. I had a Panasonic bath fan installed, wired to go on with the lights, a couple of years ago, and tenant was still getting mold/ mildew. I was wondering if it could have been cold surface condensation. When doing an attic insulation refresh this winter, I noted that insulation was quite poor over top of the bathroom. I sealed all the crevices I could reach in the attic, and added much more insulation. Of course, that still doesn't do anything to improve the wall insulation, which is likely also poor. But, most of the mildew was on ceiling.

My tenant has been leaving light on for some time after a shower, with door open, which has also been a help. I just wouldn't ever expect a tenant to open a window in winter to ventilate, and in my city, I wouldn't WANT my tenants to open windows whilst showering. Houses are waaay to close, crime waaay to high for me to think thats a good option. So, bathroom vent fans, wired to go on with the light. I use Panosonic because they've been quieter. I provide tenant a tiny LED plug-in night light that WE Energies gives out at trade shows so they can use toilet at night without brightlight and bath fan going on. Most are still plugged in.

I'm not a fan of tenants getting on stepladders to clean bathroom ceilings. So, until the vent fan can be installed ( I have one house still needs one) I bring the material, my stepladder, and I clean high up. They can clean down lower.

bathroom mold (by Busy [WI]) Posted on: Apr 22, 2022 11:49 AM

Oh-hoh! Also, the shower curtains!

In my own home, I ONLY use the single layer, washable fabric shower curtains, NO LINER required. Those vinyl shower curtain liners are pure evil mold inducing monsters! My fabric shower curtain dries thoroughly not long after a shower. Those vinyl shower curtain liners trap moisture for days.

Unfortunately, the single layer fabric shower curtains only come in boring solid colors, and I only find them available at big box hardware stores. Haven't seen them at Walmart or Target, though I haven't looked for awhile. Maybe, with today's current, more clean- lined design aesthetic, they may catch on a bit more.

Thing I especially love about these shower curtains, if you use the plastic rings to hold them on the bar, to wash the curtain in the washer is a breeze! Simply remove the shower curtain rod from the wall, slide the rings off the bar, leaving them ON THE CURTAIN, and pop the whole thing in the washer. Once washed, simply thread the rings back on the bar, hang the bar back up, and DONE! Easy-peasy! We wash ours maybe twice a year, when the bottom gets a bit stiff, same tan curtain and rings from when we remodeled our bathroom over ten years ago. Still looks new.

I put a light blue one in the bathroom of the last house I rented, its a light blue and white bathroom. Tenant continues to use that, so far no sign of mildew, and that bathroom is the only one I haven't gotten the vent fan. But, only one older person showering there. Might be some time before the vent fan must be put in.

Other tenants all switched the simple shower curtain to 'prettier' ones, that require vinyl liners, and they get so moldy. Not to mention they use the fancy metal shower curtain hooks, so washing that whole mess is a LOT of effort. Yuck.

bathroom mold (by Dee Ann [WI]) Posted on: Apr 23, 2022 8:33 AM

Busy, I apologize if I've asked this before. Cn't find and can't remember. Is it a code violation not to have a fan in the bathroom? I had a tenant that said it is a code violation. I did some research and if I'm interpreting correctly,if you have a window, that's fine. I hear you on opening a window and don't expect tenants to open a window either.

Our solution was to put mold inhibitor sold at hardware stores into the paint we use when painting bathrooms. Never have mold on bathroom walls and ceilings, just on caulk where it is a tenant issue.

At our house where it is the smallest bathroom of all our places, the heater vent is in there on the floor. We just turn the heat or A/C, whichever season it is, when we shower. Takes the humidity out perfectly! Lease it on 5 minutes after showering. We also have a closet in our bathroom that used to mold due to always dark, cold outside wall and damp due to showering. Zinsser makes a "mold sealing paint". We cleaned mold completely with bleach, then used the mold sealing paint years ago and the closet has not a spec of mold yet today. Just looked it up at Menards, there is indoor mold proof indoor paint with 10 year warranty also. Anyone ever tried this paint? Results?

Shower curtains should not be dark as it doesn't let the light in needed to keep mold at bay. We ask our tenants to open their shower curtains after showering to allow the tub area to air out. Also if tenants leave bottles, cans, soap dishes on the tub surface, mold accumulates in those corners. --75.11.xx.xx

bathroom mold (by Dee Ann [WI]) Posted on: Apr 23, 2022 8:34 AM

*leave it on, not lease it on --75.11.xx.xx

bathroom mold (by Busy [WI]) Posted on: Apr 23, 2022 1:51 PM

DeeAnn, I'm pretty sure you need to have a fan or bathroom window is my understanding. Though I think in some states a fan is required even with a window. And, yeah, no single Mom in Milwaukee wants to shower with a window open. Nuh-uh...nope...nada... ( Reminds me, need to add reflective window film to one of my bathroom windows. Tenant taped a square of cardboard over lower portion of window. She's got a creepy neighbor.)

I hadn't thought about lighter colors making a difference on mold, but that makes sense. I haven't tried any of the mold resistant paints, given all of the hullabaloo over lead paint; I was wondering if the additives that make it mold-resistant might turn out to be @#$&! in ten or fifteen years, and now I've used it on my house. ( OK, I admit, that is a bit paranoid thinking. ) But, maybe I should give it a go in my one bathroom with four people in the household. My tenant did notice that there doesn't seem to be getting new mold/ mildew spots lately, and I sealed and insulated over the bathroom over a month ago. Maybe I'll add paint that to my summer to-do list, lol!

bathroom mold (by Jim [OH]) Posted on: Apr 23, 2022 5:14 PM

Install a bathroom exhaust fan right away and wire it right onto the light switch so that both work at the same time. I would have the mold remediated professionally to eliminate any huge rear end damages when they vacate due to illness from mold. Yeah, they'll probably try claiming it as causing them illnesses.

In Ohio, an operating window still negates the requirement for a power vented exhauster. I still have put in fans in my units.

You're a good Landlord Tony. Having said that, no more annual inspections. Do semi annual inspections and automatically change smoke/CO detector batteries, plus check the toilet flappers for leaking away your water. Always look under all sinks for possible leaks.

When you don't like what you see in how a tenant is taking care of the property that you have entrusted to them, make the inspections quarterly. Tell the tenant you're getting a better insurance rate with quarterly inspections. Cite the tenant in writing for being a hoarder, slob, too loud, receiving neighbor complaints. The list is endless.

Tony is in charge!

bathroom mold (by del [MD]) Posted on: Apr 23, 2022 10:14 PM

I have fixed two mildewed bathrooms with Zinsser Perma White primer. The instructions on the can say it can be applied over existing mold and mildew. One coat of primer and problem solved. The primer is bright white and can be used without a topcoat. Cost about 35 bucks a gallon and no regrowth after a year.

bathroom mold (by mike [CA]) Posted on: May 6, 2022 9:45 PM

the tenant has allowed a mold farm to grow and they are now dictating the remedy? oh hell no! if they were OCD the mold would not be there. an open window and door should be plenty but a fan is a good idea. grout cleans up well when the pros do it and zinsser primer is a good idea for the painted surfaces.

this is a tenant i'd toss in a few months after the mold matter is in the rearview --75.80.xx.xx

bathroom mold (by Still Learning [NH]) Posted on: May 7, 2022 7:46 AM

I think you mean to say mildew. Our local code enforcement person attended our local landlord meeting a few years ago and specifically said itís mildew due to tenantís poor cleaning habits. Last one I had like that my electrician went to replace the bath fan and found the flapper taped shut. That same building has had bird nests and holes in the old flexible style hoses. Itís not always the tenant, but in your case it sounds like it.

Click Here to send this discussion to a friend
Report discussion to Webmaster

Subject: RE: bathroom mold
Your Name:
Your State:

bathroom mold
Would you like to be notified via email when somebody replies to this thread?
If so, you must include your valid email address here. Do not add your address more than once per thread/subject. By entering your email address here, you agree to receive notification from every time anyone replies to "this" thread. You will receive response notifications for up to one week following the original post. Your email address will not be visible to readers.
Email Address: