Removing Mold and Mildew from Books?

Category Mold
Books that have been in damp or humid storage or those that have suffered water damage may begin to grow mold and mildew. This page offers some suggestions for removing mold and mildew from books.


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July 21, 2017

Is using a microwave oven for ten seconds to wipe out mold from my books harmless to the book and the oven?


July 21, 20170 found this helpful
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i have read similar articles that state this works but it is not true. Damage to the books - yes.
Read this article before trying and then decide.

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July 23, 20170 found this helpful
Best Answer

i recently read that the way microwaves raelly work is by altering the molecular structure of water, which is not really the same thing as other heating methods, so there's lots of things that they are not suited for


i would first try just leaving the books in the sun, or in your locked car in the hot day. Granted this will warp your book a bit but the microwave would, too

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How do I get rid of possible mold and mildew in stored items? Nothing can just be thrown in the washing machine. The items include books, photos and frames, odds and ends, but nothing fabric.


July 10, 20201 found this helpful

For Mole on books removal - - And for photos , air out and take a clean cotton clothe and wipe inward - out removing mold build up and stains.

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July 10, 20200 found this helpful

Thank you, Ana

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July 11, 20200 found this helpful

Mold can be dangerous and should not be done inside the home or in a closed area unless you have a HEPA system in your home. The best way to do this and to clean all your items that have mold on them is to take them outside on a sunny day. When working with book you don't want to fade the covers and the sun can do this so work in a shady area. I would suggest that you wear a face mask when working with mold so that you are not breathing it in. This can be very dangerous.


To start cleaning the books use a "magnetic" wiping cloth such as Swifter Sweeper Dry Sweeping Cloth, un-scented but be careful to avoid using wipes that are themselves dampened with a chemical, cleaner, or perfume because this can damage your books. If you have some tough stains on the book cover you can take a little ethyl alcohol and dampen your cleaning cloth. Do not make it too wet because this can cause the ink to run on the pages. You will need to wipe down all the books and get rid of the mold on them.

You can follow the same procedure for your other items that have mold on them. If the item does not have ink then it is possible to use a little more ethyl alcohol on them to get the mold off of these items.

As for your photos it is best to freeze them, air dry them, or use an UV light to kill the mold on them. Then use a soft brush such as an old tooth brush or even a soft brissle shoe brush to brush the mold off the photos. You can also use a soft cloth to clean them with. But when you are done the cloth needs to be washed in warm water and bleach in order to clean it. Again do not do this in your home unless you have a HEPA filter. Wait for a nice sunny day and work outside when cleaning these items.

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October 18, 2010

How do I clean mildew on the outside and inside of books which have been stored?

By joanie marie from the shores of Lake Michigan

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