Green mold forming on the window seals of your car can give it a weathered and unkempt appearance. Not only this but over time the mold can break down the integrity of the rubber, allowing water into the vehicle.
So, how can you stop mold from forming on the rubber seals of your vehicle? Is it dangerous and what’s the best cleaning method? In this article, we answer these questions and more, so keep reading.
To remove mold from the rubber seals around your car’s windows, make a paste using baking soda and water. Spread the paste onto the seals and leave to dry. The alkaline environment the baking soda creates will kill the mold to the root level. Once dried, wipe away to remove powder and mold residue.
Why are the rubber seals of your car moldy?
The rubber seals on the outside of your vehicle can become the ideal location for mold to grow. This is a result of organic matter providing a source of nutrients and water molecules left from rain giving mold the moisture levels it needs. Should the car be parked in an area with an ambient temperature between 60-80 degrees Fahrenheit, you have the perfect environment for mold to grow.
Once established, the spores it releases are able to spread across the entirety of the vehicle.
Is it mold, moss, or algae?
Green mold can grow on the rubber seals of a vehicle as we have already discussed, but so can algae. So how can you tell what you are dealing with to make sure you tackle it in the most efficient way?
The main difference between green mold and algae is that mold is a form of fungus, and algae and moss are types of plants.
Mold also must have a food source to survive, whereas algae and mosses can use photosynthesis, and so, require sunlight to live. As mold feeds off organic material, it can happily survive without natural sunlight.
An important aspect to consider is that algae and mosses growing on the rubber seals of a vehicle may be unsightly, but would not cause any health problems, whereas, as discussed, mold and its spores certainly can.
You can identify whether you are dealing with mold, moss, or algae by simply looking more closely at it.
Green algae usually have a slimy appearance, and can often come with an unpleasant smell, whereas mosses are made up of dense green clumps of tiny leaves. Green mold on the other hand can come in powdery or velvety textures.
Make sure you are definitely dealing with mold before you begin trying to remove it, as the methods in this article are intended to help remove mold only.
Is green mold on a car window seal dangerous?
Unfortunately, green mold found growing anywhere on a car can indeed be hazardous to humans.
The most common strains of mold that sometimes have a green appearance as Aspergillus, Penicillium, and Cladosporium. All three of these strains have the ability to produce mycotoxins, which if inhaled or ingested in large quantities can cause a number of health complaints, including:
- Runny nose
- Breathing difficulties
- Skin irritation
It is for these reasons that any mold found on or around the seals of your car should be removed as soon as it is spotted. As the spores can be released upon the mold being disturbed, it is important to wear the correct safety equipment whenever trying to remove it yourself. For instance, a breathing mask, goggles, and rubber gloves.
How to get mold off a car window seal
You may think that simply washing your vehicle will be enough to remove the mold, however, mold can be stubborn, especially if it has been able to become deeply established into the rubber. Even if you were to clean the mold with detergent, the roots of the mold may still remain and begin to regrow. It is for this reason that you need to ensure the mold is all the way dead.
In most cases, I would suggest using white distilled vinegar to kill mold and its spores, however, the acidity of the vinegar is strong enough to damage the rubber l, causing cracking and perishing.
Instead, I would suggest using a combination of baking soda and detergent to ensure the seals are cleaned thoroughly with the mold being killed at its root.
To clean and remove mold from the rubber seals of a vehicle, use the following steps:
Step 1. Use baking soda paste on the seals
Create a paste using a tablespoon of baking soda to a few drops of water. Spread the paste over the affected areas and leave it to dry.
Step 2. Remove the powder and mold residue
Once the baking soda paste has dried, the mold underneath will be dead. After this point, you can wipe away any of the powder and mold residues with a damp cloth.
Step 3. Clean the seals with detergent
To get a thorough clean of the seals of your vehicle after removing the mold, you can use a solution of detergent and warm water.
Dip a cloth or sponge into the detergent solution and work into the seals to ensure all mold and powder residue is removed.
For particularly stubborn areas, you can use a toothbrush to gently scrub the area. Be careful not to stub too hard, as this could damage the rubber.
Step 4. Dry the seals
Remember that mold grows on seals as a result of moisture and organic matter. Organic matter can come from dust landing on the vehicle, which there is nothing we can do about.
What we can influence, are the moisture levels, so make sure that once you have cleaned the seals, you dry them completely with a dry cloth.
How to keep mold from growing on car window seals?
The easiest way to prevent mold from growing on the rubber seals of your vehicle is to make sure they stay as dry and clean as possible. This means washing the car once every few weeks and paying attention to the seals to see if any dirt or grime has accumulated.
If possible, keep your car covered either in a garage or with a fabric cover to protect it from rain. This should help to keep the moisture levels low enough to prevent mold growth. Beware that if your garage has a humidity level greater than 55% for long enough, mold can still begin to grow, so make sure it is kept as dry as possible.
Mold growing on the rubber seals of your vehicle can cause cracking and perishing if left long enough. This can lead to water entering the rest of the vehicle, which in turn can allow further mold growth deeper in the vehicle.
Fortunately, the mold can be easily killed, removed, and prevented with just a few simple steps provided above.