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Caulking nightmares!

Hi ladies,

There's nothing I hate more than mold that slowly starts to grow in the caulking of a shower.  I'm a clean freak and religiously clean the entire condo, especially the bathroom, at least once per week.  I even use a toothbrush on the caulking to prevent mold but to no avail.  Water still seems to find it's way in there or behind there and creates mold.  How can I prevent this or better yet, get rid of what's already started to grow?  Am I doomed to re-caulking every few years?  

Re: Caulking nightmares!

  • It sounds like mold is behind the caulking.    Rip out all the caulking with a special tool (hardware stores have these).  Scrub everything with bleach and let dry for 48 hours.  Yes. 48 hours.  If you have a mold smell after 48 hours, the mold is in the walls and you will need to rip out and redo the bath. 

    If there is no mold smell, you have gotten it all and can re caulk from scratch.  Allow the caulk to set for two hours longer than recommended.  This should prevent water from getting underneath.  

    If you can keep the bathroom relatively dry (decent bathroom fan will do this), you should not have any future problems.   

    Most bathrooms need this treatment every 15 to 20 years. It is not difficult just time consuming. 

  • Yep, I was afraid of that.  Our condo is only 5 years old but I guess it needs to be done.  Thanks for the tips.
  • We have the same issue in our apt.  I can't reno the bathroom, because we don't own this, so I continue to recaulk.

    No solutions but I feel your pain.

  • imageMagdala9:

    It sounds like mold is behind the caulking.    Rip out all the caulking with a special tool (hardware stores have these).  Scrub everything with bleach and let dry for 48 hours.  Yes. 48 hours.  If you have a mold smell after 48 hours, the mold is in the walls and you will need to rip out and redo the bath. 

    If there is no mold smell, you have gotten it all and can re caulk from scratch.  Allow the caulk to set for two hours longer than recommended.  This should prevent water from getting underneath.  

    If you can keep the bathroom relatively dry (decent bathroom fan will do this), you should not have any future problems.   

    Most bathrooms need this treatment every 15 to 20 years. It is not difficult just time consuming. 

    This exactly. I re-caulked in apartments we used to rent because I am like you... I can't stand moldy caulking. Drying off the caulk with a dry towel after showering seems to help keep the mold at bay as well.

    Pregnancy Ticker
    My domestic adventures blog.
  • I fold up a paper towel into a 1-2 inch strip, then line the caulk with them and cover with bleach. The paper towel holds the bleach on the caulk so that it can really work (as opposed to just dripping off). It still won't fix the problem if there's mold behind the caulk, but its a good way to get rid of existing mold on the outside. GL! 
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