Learning how to remove molds from leather couches should be in every owner’s “to-do” list. Stains and scratches can ruin the apprearance of your lovely leather couch. They don’t look good and are sometimes uncomfortable to sit on. However, there is nothing more unpleasant than the appearance of molds in your beloved leather couch. They are unsightly and their presence could pose a risk to the health of everyone at home.
The moment you notice that molds are starting to appear in your leather couch, clean it right away. Unless your couch is made of cheese, it is never okay to have a moldy chair. Don’t compromise the health of your family.
Mold or Mildew?
The sooner you remove the molds, the better…Or remove the mildew?
Wait– Mold or Mildew?
Before reading the directions on how to take it off your leather sofa, learn the difference between the two terms that people very often interchange.
According to the US Environmental Protection Agency:
“Mildew refers to certain kinds of mold or fungus…often used generically to refer to mold growth, usually with a flat growth habit.
Molds include all species of microscopic fungi…can thrive on any organic matter, including clothing, leather,…Mildew often lives on…places where moisture levels are high.”
It’s not exactly wrong to call mold “mildew” and vice-versa. However, it is the molds that usually thrive on leather. Therefore, “mold” is more acceptable as the term to use in this situation.
When it comes to molds, simple dusting or wiping off dirt is not enough to keep leather clean. Its presence demands more specific actions.
These are non-toxic ways on how to remove molds from your leather sofa.
But first, remember:
- Avoid the spread of mold spores and allergens at home, especially when you’re working on the leather couch. Take it outside for cleaning. Good ventilation is necessary. However, keep it away from the curb, though. Better not let others mistake it as free pre-loved furniture.
- Wearing face masks and gloves may also be necessary to protect you from allergens while you clean.
- If you have allergies, it is important that you take your medication first before starting work on your couch.
- Work on the removable cushions, too.
- Be ready with, at least, two pieces of clean cloth to wipe off any remaining mold. However, you may need more cloth to use in order to avoid spreading the mold. Stop only when the mold is completely gone.
- Always test mixtures or solutions first on certain inconspicuous parts of the leather to check if the upholstery will react negatively to them. If it doesn’t, then proceed.
- It’s important that after wiping off the molds, you let your furniture dry in a warm, well-ventilated place. Set up a fan or electric heater if you have to.
How to Remove Molds
1. Leave the furniture to sit under the sun. Direct sunlight is a natural mold-killer as mold thrives in damp, dark areas. Be careful not to leave the chair under the sun for too long, though because it can get very dry and be prone to cracks and scratches.
2. Scrub molds off with a soft nylon brush from top to bottom. Vacuum every corner or crevice after, making sure to rid of any residue. Vacuum especially if you can’t take the chair outside.
Remember to wash off mold from the brush. Empty the vacuum cleaner as well and replace the bag too. Wash thoroughly the interior if it’s a bagless vacuum, then dry under the sun. Also, sweep the streets to remove mold particles, for everyone’s safety.
3. Spray white vinegar on the leather. It’s good that you can fix the problem with something that’s commonly found in the kitchen. Pour a little white vinegar into a spray bottle. A 1:1 ratio is always ideal. Then go for the kill. Spray directly on the mold and let the acidic factor do its work. This does not only kill molds but can help prevent their growth as well.
4. Spray the leather with a saddle soap solution. Just mix a little saddle soap with water in a spray bottle. You can use a mild detergent as an alternative. Apply the same way white vinegar is applied (see #3). Again, clean off residue with two or more pieces of clean cloth.
5. Use germicidal soap. A small amount mixed with water in a bucket often does the trick. Create thick suds and using a clean, slightly damp cloth, apply them to the affected areas. With another clean damp cloth, make sure to wipe away excess suds.
6. Use denatured alcohol. Following a 1:1 ratio, mix the alcohol with water. Dip a soft cloth into the solution but don’t let it drip. Keep it damp. Wipe away the mold with it.
7. Finally, apply a clean label mold inhibitor. They are chemical preservatives added to foods like baked goods. As the term suggests, it inhibits mold growth to lengthen shelf-life. Ask your manufacturer how to do this on your leather.
Better than an Ounce of Cure (Or Vinegar!)
It is always better to prevent a bad situation rather than fix it when it’s already there. There are several ways to prevent mold from growing on your leather again.
Molds stay in areas that are humid, with poor ventilation, or with leaks. Therefore,…
- as mentioned, place it in a warm, well-ventilated area. Make sure it gets a good amount of sunlight too.
- allow air circulation. Keep doors and windows open when cooking or taking a bath, for instance.
- use a dehumidifier if the couch, or your home itself, is in an area where humidity is high. Remove moisture.
- lastly, fix plumbing leaks.
Don’t let mold ruin your leather couch. More importantly, don’t let it cause any health problems in the family. Do these simple mold removal and prevention tips so you won’t have to deal with a moldy situation ever again.