Last Updated on June 27, 2023 by Chase Manhattan
The window seals on a car don’t dry off easily. That’s why mold forming around the car window seals is pretty common. Mold does not look good and it spreads to other areas. So, you need to get rid of the mold as soon as possible. Here is a guide on how to remove mold from car window seals.
- Mix dish soap with water.
- Get a toothbrush and a rag.
- Soak the rag in soapy water.
- Wipe the seals thoroughly.
- Dip the toothbrush in soapy water.
- Scrub the seals.
- Rinse with high-pressure water.
Getting rid of the mold is easy enough, you just have to put some effort into it. More so if the mold growth has been there for a while. Follow this step-by-step guide.
Safety Tips for Removing Mold
- Wear Protective Gear: Before starting the cleaning process, ensure you are well-protected. This means you wear protective clothing like rubber gloves, a dust mask, and safety glasses to prevent any direct contact with the mold spores, which can lead to allergic reactions or respiratory issues.
For instance, a pair of protective goggles can prevent mold spores from getting into your eyes, while a mask can prevent inhalation of spores.
- Choose the Right Cleaner: It’s critical to use the right cleaning solution that can effectively get rid of mold. Consider using a mold killer or a mixture of vinegar and water. Avoid using bleach as it can damage the car window seals.
For example, a solution of one-part white vinegar to two parts water can be used to clean mold effectively.
- Ventilation: Ensure the area you are working in is well-ventilated. Use exhaust fans when possible. This will help disperse the mold spores that become airborne during the cleaning process, reducing the chance of them being inhaled or settling elsewhere in your car.
For instance, opening up the car doors and windows can help circulate the air.
- Use a Brush: It’s often necessary to use a small brush to thoroughly clean the mold off the window seals. Be gentle to avoid damaging the seals.
Example: A soft-bristled toothbrush can effectively reach into the nooks and crannies without causing damage.
- Proper Disposal: Dispose of any rags, brushes, or other materials that you’ve used in the cleaning process. Since they’ve come into contact with mold, they can potentially spread it to other areas if not handled correctly.
For instance, place these materials in a sealed bag before throwing them in the trash.
- Follow Up with a Detergent: After removing the mold, clean the area with a mild detergent to remove any remaining mold residue and help prevent future growth.
For example, a mild soap mixed with water can be used for this purpose.
- Regular Inspection and Cleaning: Maintain a regular cleaning schedule to prevent mold growth. Mold tends to thrive in damp and dark environments. Therefore, regular inspection and cleaning can help prevent the reoccurrence of mold.
For instance, check for mold every
Cleaning Mold From Car Window Seals
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If you have ever dealt with mold in your house, you know that getting rid of mold is relatively easy. You just have to eliminate the source of the moisture.
However, it’s not the same with mold in cars. The thing is, in your house, you can use something strong like white vinegar. You can’t use vinegar on your car though.
The rubber seals won’t get damaged regardless of the cleaning solution you are using. The window rubbers are too close to the paint job though. And there’s no way to avoid getting the solution on the paint.
That’s why we are going to be using something mild and safe for car paint, dish soap. The average liquid dish soap you have at home can be effective at getting rid of mold growth.
- Mix dish soap with hot water.
There are is no right ratio for the mixture, so just freeball this. Dish soap shouldn’t damage your paint even if the mixture you make is strong. Also, I prefer mixing in a clean water bucket, so you can soak the toothbrush and the rag. You can put the mixture in a spray bottle though. That way, you just spray the seals.
- Get a clean rag and a toothbrush.
I recommend using a wool rag, something rugged, so it can scrub the mold. This is effective but also not safe. If you are using a towel rag, be careful to not scrub the paint too. If you want to go for something safe, use a soft cloth or a microfiber towel. Use any old toothbrush you can find at home. A nylon brush or a paint brush can be quite effective too.
- Soak the rag in the soapy water and start wiping.
Thoroughly wipe away any surface mold. Get inside the seals. Clean the seals on the sides of the window, the ones on the top, and the ones on the bottom. The best way to do this is to put a finger through the rag. And wipe with that finger. Use your nails for those hard to get rid of parts. Open your doors, and cover every inch of the rubber seals. Remember, don’t scrub here, just wipe. Check the rubber seals on the top of the windshield too. Mould & mildew can form there too.
- Dip the toothbrush and start scrubbing.
Now that you have gotten rid of the surface mold, you can start scrubbing. Cover the same areas. Be thorough. Scrub and apply as much pressure as needed. Don’t be afraid to repeat this step 2 more times. The brush should be able to reach those places you couldn’t reach with your finger.
- Rinse with a garden hose.
Rinsing is really important here. The pieces of mold you scrubbed can still be dangerous. So, you want to get rid of those too. We do that with a garden hose that can handle high-pressure water. High-pressure is recommended. That’s why you can also use a pressure washer if you have one.
- Wipe the seals with a dry clean cloth.
You don’t want to leave the seals moist, mold may appear again. Also, we are going to be treating the rubber to prevent mold growth. This is best done when the seals are dry.
- Treat with a vinyl conditioner.
This step is optional, I highly recommend it though. If mold formed once, it’s going to grow again. You need to prevent that. To do that, we use a vinyl conditioner. There are plenty of products you can use here. I recommend Torque Trim Gel. Just spray the window seals and wipe them away with a clean microfiber cloth.
There you go, you should have no mold anymore. Follow the guide thoroughly. Repeat Steps 1-6 if needed.
Why Does Mold Form On My Car Window Seals
The most important thing in mold elimination is finding out why it’s there in the first place. Mold can’t grow without moisture. So, why are my car window seals moist?
Moisture can come from various sources. For instance, the seals can trap water when the car is washed. When it rains. In cold temperatures, when the cold air reaches hot air from the car, condensation occurs. This is why it’s recommended to use a car cover during winter.
All of these cases should not lead to mold growth if the car is dried completely. For instance, if you park your car in a shade after it had rained, the trapped moisture in the seals can’t evaporate.
It’s the same for every example. So, mold forms when there is moisture trapped in the window seals. Usually, the moisture evaporates out in the sun, but it stays there when there’s no sunlight.
Another reason why your car window seals may get mold is the lack of washing. You should regularly wash your car, this minimizes any type of damage that may occur.
Is Mold Dangerous For You
I know some of you may be freaked about the mold you have been inhaling for a while. Don’t panic though. There are a lot of types of mold, the most common one is green mould.
Only black mold is dangerous for humans. However, people with asthma or allergies can have problems with every type of mold. This is why it’s best to deal with it as soon as possible, as prolonged exposure to mold spores can lead to more issues down the line – for sensitive parties.
How To Prevent Mold From Growing On Car Window Seals
- Don’t park your car in a shade or in a garage after raining or after washing.
- Don’t store your car in a garage that has mold.
- Don’t use car covers without breathable fabric.
- When wet, park your car in direct sunlight.
- Use vinyl cleaners on the seals, and use vinyl & rubber conditioner.
- Regularly wash your car.
- Remove the mold as soon as you notice it, don’t let it grow too much.
The reality is, once you get mold, it’s hard to get rid of it. Not that you won’t be able to clean it off. But most likely, the mold will appear again. That’s why you need to figure out what you were doing wrong. And, always add a conditioner to the rubber seals, a hydrophobic conditioner.
Related Questions And Other FAQs
Is Vaseline Good For Rubber Seals
It depends on the type of vaseline you are using. Petroleum-based products can damage and degrade the rubber. Use Vaseline on the rubber seals only if does not contain petroleum.
Can You Use WD-40 On Rubber Door Seals
Yes, you can use WD-40 on any type of rubber seal, including car window seals. WD-40 is a multi-purpose product that can be used as a lubricant and a rust dissolvent.
Does WD40 Kill Moss?
WD40 will not kill moss, but it can help you remove it from window sills. Since moss develops in areas with excess moisture, WD40 helps to prevent it from coming back in the future. Otherwise, moss growing on window seals can be a sign of moisture inside the car which can later develop into mold.