How to Remove Mold from Bare Wood

Mold grows on porous, organic materials when exposed to sufficient moisture. It is particularly fond of bare wood and must be dealt with promptly to increase the chance of successfully eradicating it. To keep mold from growing back, remove its source of moisture.

Mold grows best in moist environments with little or no airflow.

Step 1

Put on rubber gloves, protective goggles, a respirator and old clothing that can be discarded or immediately laundered.  This will protect you from airborne mold particles, which can be harmful if inhaled.

Step 2

Dampen the moldy area to reduce the number of airborne mold particles.  Saturate the mold by spraying it with plain water in a plastic spray bottle.

Step 3

Scrub the area on the wood where the mold is.  Use a wet, stiff-bristled brush and scrub in small circles to remove as much mold as possible.

Step 4

Remove any mold spores left after scrubbing with a stiff-bristled brush by sanding with medium-grade sandpaper.  Sand in the direction of the wood grain until the discoloration from the mold spores is no longer evident.

Step 5

Disinfect the bare wood with a solution of 1 1/2 cups of bleach to 1 gallon of water.  Apply the solution by spraying it on with a plastic spray bottle or wiping it on with a clean cloth saturated with the solution.

Step 6

Allow the disinfectant solution to air-dry on the bare wood; do not wipe it off with a cloth or towel. 

Things You Will Need

  • Rubber gloves
  • Protective eye goggles
  • Protective mouth and nose particulate respirator
  • Old clothing
  • Stiff-bristled brush
  • Chlorine bleach
  • Medium grade sandpaper
  • Plastic spray bottle
  • Clean clothes


  • Mold spores and particles are dangerous when breathed in. Always protect yourself against exposure to them with a particulate respirator that is specifically designed to filter out mold spores.

About the Author

Sharon Sweeny has a college degree in general studies and worked as an administrative and legal assistant for 20 years before becoming a professional writer in 2008. She specializes in writing about home improvement, self-sufficient lifestyles and gardening.

Photo Credits

  • mold on petrified wood image by MAXFX from Fotolia.com