How to Remove Mold from Wood Floors

A bucket of cleaning supplies.
  • 1-2 hours
  • Beginner
  • 50-300
What You'll Need
Mild soap
Trisodium phosphate
Scrub brush
Long handled scrub brush
Shop vac
Power washer

You must remove mold from wooden floors before it becomes a big problem. If you leave it, or if there’s already mold on the wood floors of a house you’ve just bought, you might have real difficulties getting rid of it. It’s not a complex procedure to remove mold but it does require quite a lot of hard work. It’s also a process that needs time to work effectively so don’t try to hurry it.

Step 1 - Scrub

Start by mixing detergent with water. You will need to get on your knees with a scrub brush to remove mold. Where the mold is very recent, this should enable you to remove it all. Where it’s ingrained, you’ll only be able to remove the very top layer.

Step 2 - Use Bleach

Next, you need to wash the floor with a bleach solution. The ratio should be 10 parts of water to 1 part bleach to remove mold effectively. For every 2 gallons of water, add ¼ cup trisodium phosphate to the water. Having washed the floor with this solution, scrub using a firm hand scrubbing brush to remove mold. This should serve to penetrate further into the mold.

Step 3 - Scrub Again

If the previous steps haven't worked, scrub again with a higher strength mixture of 4 parts water to 1 part bleach. However, this time you should use a long-handled scrub brush which will give you greater leverage.

Be aware that this will almost certainly discolor the wood. At this stage, however, you’ll need to stain and refinish the wood anyway because the mold is so deep in the wood.

Step 4 - Use a Power Washer

If the mold has been on the floor for a long time, it will have penetrated the wood deeply. You will need to use a power washer on the floor to remove the mold. Only apply a small amount of the water mixture at a time and use a shop vac to remove the water immediately. When you’ve finished, allow the wood to dry completely. This could be overnight although it might possibly take longer depending on the temperature and climate conditions in your area.

Step 5 - Prevent Mold from Returning

To prevent the mold returning, you need to apply a solution of bleach in water at a ratio of 10 parts water to 1 part bleach before adding ¼ cup trisodium phosphate. Allow it to soak into the wood and allow it to dry completely.

Step 6 - Sand and Finish

Once the wood is completely dry, use a fine grit sandpaper (about 200 grit) over the area that has been affected with mold as well as any other nearby areas that are discolored. Sand until smooth. After, use a tack cloth to remove all the grit.

Apply stain to the floor and allow it to dry. You’ll need to ensure the stain is the same color as the rest of the floor. Finally, apply a good polyurethane finish to the wood. This will prevent any further spills seeping into the wood and remove the necessity to tackle mold problems again.