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Soap Scum vs. Mold vs. Mildew — How To Tell the Difference

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Wondering What Those Stains Are in Your Home?

We hear these terms passed around a lot, especially when it comes to keeping our homes clean. But what’s the difference between soap scum, mold, and mildew?

Well, the major difference is that soap scum is a mineral composition, and mold/mildew are organic, living organisms. This important distinction impacts how each invasive element spreads and can be treated.

Read on for more about the differences between soap scum, mold, and mildew so you can prevent excessive buildup in your home.

How To Identify Soap Scum

Soap scum is the result of mixing soap with hard water. Water hardness is judged by the mineral composition, with the higher hardness being classified as excess levels of magnesium and calcium.

Hard water causes many issues, but the addition of soap creates a white substance that we know as soap scum. You’ll often see this in your bathroom left behind on fixtures, countertops, showers, and more.

Installing a water softener is a great way to keep soap scum from building up in your tub and shower. Call Ostrom for water softener installation in the Roanoke area.

What Mold Looks Like & How To Clean It

Mold can be a huge problem in the home because it can pose health risks when at certain levels, especially for those who are allergic. Mold is a live fungus that’s usually black or green.

According to the EPA, it’s nearly impossible to achieve a mold-free environment, as it’s always circulating in the air. However, reducing humidity and moisture is the best way to prevent mold growth.

Mold, in small amounts, can be safely cleaned and removed with household cleaners. For more pervasive issues, a professional mold remediation service may be required.

What Mildew Looks Like vs. Mold

Mildew, another fungus, can be thought of as mold’s cousin since it shares some of the same properties.

The major difference between mold and mildew is that mildew is white. Mildew, like mold, is attracted to warm, moist areas. As such, your bathroom is the ideal environment for mold and mildew growth.

Treating Every Customer With Honesty & Fairness

At Ostrom Electrical Plumbing Heating & Air Conditioning, we aim to give every customer the best experience possible.

We offer a wide array of plumbing services, so call us today at (540) 685-4040 to learn more.

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