Friday, June 11, 2010

Saying No to Mildew

Mildew: remove it before it spreads
by Alan Eggleston, writer, editor, bookseller

If you clean out the garage or basement and run into forgotten books, look them over for mildew and other forms of fungi. Fungi like warm, moist climates and will continue to grow unless removed. And if you move contaminated books in with clean books, the fungi won't hesitate to move to the new food source (books = paper = organic matter = food) and multiply there under the right conditions.

According to, you can battle mildew in a couple of different ways. One is to remove the books from the environment -- a cool, dry place is best. Books like a humidity level of 60% or less best. If the room is warm, turn on an air conditioner. If it's damp, turn on a dehumidifier. Another is to apply a dry cleaning pad to the affected area. If the mildew is just beginning, you can also try using a hair blower set on low.

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