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Old 10-23-2012, 06:58 PM   #1
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how do i kill mild mildew?

so we pulled back the wall where there had been some water staining, and surprise, it looked really fantastic! brand new, it was amazing. the staining was all surface. the only thing was that there was some mildew in the supports/joists but not significant enough to remove the pieces in most places, im very ho. on the 4 corners midway down the camper there is very mild mildew but an active leak in the bathroom corner. we believe the water is coming through a hole in the sealant. we are removing all pieces that are soft with significant mildew and replacing them.

is there a spray or something i can use to kill the mold in places where there is mild mildew on wood, no active leaks and where we don't want to remove the supports?
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Old 10-23-2012, 07:07 PM   #2
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btw, this is a 85 sunline 1350. i couldn't believe how good it looked inside the walls. really brand new. just wanted to say it again, since the posts about 'tearing inside the walls' usually ends with more more more mildew and that's what i was expecting.
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Old 10-23-2012, 08:17 PM   #3
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I do not know what you are looking at as to how bad the mold is.

I have used this product once the wood is mostly dry to stop and kill any fungus from turning into dry rot later on.

CPES™-Wood based epoxy products to repair and resist wood rot.

These folks deal in wood restoration. If you call them they may be able to tell you how to get rid of the mold to then use their CPES to make sure rot and dry rot does not start later on once you sale up the wall.

Heads up, if you do use this product you have to use a respirator. You can buy them with the correct filter cartridges for this type of product direct from Rot Dr. I did buy one of theirs and it was a high end one not too bad in price. Having used enough pesticide respirators from years ago, the ones they offer are good. The stink in the camper will go away after a few days of being aired out. I have never smelt it since the application time so it does go away.

Hope this helps and good luck.

John
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Old 10-24-2012, 05:44 PM   #4
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I did some searching and found an interesting article... It's titled "Chemotherapy for rot"

The page is hosted on angelfire.com and they are notorius for popup windows... The link is HERE but I'll post the text of the article below...

Chemotherapy for Rot
Once rot gets a toehold in wood it is difficult to cure completely -- it is like a cancer. Digging out the rotted wood will still leave spores and water in the sound wood. After you fill in the cavity with something like epoxy, the rot continues to flourish underneath. Products promoted to make rotted wood sound and stop rot penetrate only until they meet water, with which they do not mix. Under the solid repair rotting goes on. With one exception (more later), the commercial products sold to treat dry wood to prevent rot are completely ineffective against established rot in wet wood because they are dissolved in petroleum solvents and oil and water do not mix.


There are two commonly available inexpensive materials that will kill rot in wood and prevent its recurrence. First, there are borates (borax-boric acid mixtures) which have an established record in preventing rot in new wood and in killing rot organisms and wood-destroying insects in infested wood. Second, there is ethylene glycol, most readily available as auto antifreeze-coolant. Glycol is toxic to the whole spectrum of organisms from staphylococcus bacteria to mammals. All of the published material on its effectiveness against wood-destroying fungi and insects that I am aware of is the result of my investigations over the past 15 years.
Both borate solutions and glycol penetrate dry and wet wood well
because they are water-soluble; in fact, penetration by glycol is especially helped by its extreme hygroscopicity -- its strong attraction for water. For both, the fact that they are water-soluble means they are not permanent solutions to rot in wood that is continually exposed to water-below the waterline and in ground-where they will eventually be extracted-dissolved out.
I first was interested in glycol as a wood-stabilizing agent, where it is in many ways superior to polyethylene glycol (PEG), and it was during this work that I realized the useful effect of glycol on organisms, though I was pretty dense in interpreting the first experiment. The ladies immerse the stems of greenery such as magnolia branches in glycerin to keep them green. Glycol is very similar to glycerin in all its physical properties and much cheaper, so I stuck a magnolia branch in antifreeze. The next day it was brown. After the third attempt I tumbled to the fact that the glycol was killing the greenery. This was the reason that glycol never replaced glycerin in applications such as a humectant for tobacco and an ingredient of cosmetics and pharmaceutical ointments, though it had all the desirable physical properties.


I had two 2" thick slabs of a 14" diameter hickory tree that had just been cut. I treated one with antifreeze and left one untreated. I was looking at wood stabilization, not rot prevention. After about six months stored inside my shop the untreated control was not only cracked apart, but it was sporting a great fungal growth, while the treated slab was clean. The local history museum wanted to exhibit two "turpentine trees", longleaf pines that had many years ago been gashed to harvest the sap that made everything from turpentine to pine tar. The trees delivered to us after cutting were infested with various beetles and had some fungal growth. I treated them with antifreeze outside under a plastic tarpaulin every few days for three weeks. They were then free of insects and fungus and have remained so after being moved inside and installed in an exhibit over four years ago.


I took three pieces from a rotting dock float that were covered with a
heavy growth of fungus, lichens, etc. I treated one with antifreeze painted on with a brush, the second with a water solution containing 23% borates (as B2O3), and left the third untreated as a control. They were left exposed outdoors and were rained on the first night. By the next morning the growth on the antifreeze-treated piece was definitely browning and the borate-treated piece showed slight browning. After two months exposure to the weather the growth was dead on the antifreezeand borate-treated pieces and flourishing on the control. I have a simple flat-bottomed skiff built of plywood and white pine, which has little resistance to rot. After ten years some rot developed in one of the frames. It may have begun in the exposed end grain. It consumed the side frame, part of the bottom frame, and part of a seat brace fastened to the side frame. The plywood gusset joining the side frame to the bottom frame was not attacked. I excised the rotted wood, saturated all with ethylene glycol antifreeze to kill all the rot organisms, and there has been
no further deterioration in four more years afloat with wet bilges. I have not replaced any pieces, as I am building another boat that can replace it; that is more fun, anyway.


I have a 60+-year old case of the fungus infection known as "athlete's foot". Many years ago it infected the toenails extensively. The whole thing was pretty grotesque. My dermatologist and druggist both assured me there is no known cure. About six years ago I started using antifreeze applied under the nails with a medicine dropper about every five days. The professionals are technically right. I have not completely cured it, but the nails have grown out pink and thinned almost to the ends and I never have any trouble with blistering, peeling, or itching between the toes as I had had for six decades. No drug company is going to have any interest in this because the information has been in the public domain for so long that there is no opportunity for any proprietary advantage.
The various wood-rotting organisms cannot be anywhere near as tough. There are two types of borate products commercially available for treating wood-solid sodium octaborate for making solutions in water (Tim-BorŽ and Ship-BorŽ) and a 40% solution of sodium octaborate in ethylene glycol (BoracareŽ). Their equivalents and more concentrated solutions can be easily prepared from borax, boric acid, and antifreeze at much lower cost. Keith Lawrence, editor of Boatbuilder offered to sell me advertising if I wanted to go in the business, but I might run afoul of patents (preparation for individual use is not prohibited), I would have to get EPA registration, and I could not deliver products anywhere near as cheaply as they can be made from raw materials available at your supermarket, drugstore, and discount store.


Glycol by itself has one big advantage over solutions of borates in either water or glycol. Glycol penetrates rapidly through all paint, varnish, and oil finishes (except epoxy and polyurethanes) without lifting or damaging those finishes in any way. You can treat all of the wood of your boat without removing any finish. The dyes in glycol antifreeze are so weak that they do not discolor even white woods. Once bare wood has been treated with glycol or the borate solutions and become dry to the touch it can be finished or glued. IN THE YEARS SINCE I FIRST WROTE THIS ARTICLE, MY EXPERIENCE HAS BEEN THAT GLYCOL BY ITSELF IS GENERALLY THE BEST TREATMENT FOR KILLING ROT. Gougeon'sresearch has shown that borate solutions weaken epoxy joints in the treated wood. If a borate solution leaves white residues on the surface, it will have to be washed off with water and the surface allowed to dry.

If you decide you need to treat with both glycol and borates, this is my preferred process to treat rot. Once you find soft wood or other evidence of rot, soak it with antifreeze even if you cannot do anything else at the moment. Paint it on or spray it on with a coarse spray. Avoid fine mistlike spraying because it increases the likelihood that you will breathe in unhealthy amounts of glycol. Put it on surfaces well away from the really damaged wood, too. Use glycol lavishly on the suspect wood, which will readily absorb 10-20% of its weight of antifreeze. Next dig out wood that is rotted enough to be weak. Add more glycol to wet the exposed wood thoroughly. Then add the 25% borate solution of the recipe below so long as it will soak in in no more than 2-3 hours. Then fill in the void with epoxy putty and/or a piece of sound treated wood as required. The reasons I use borates at all are: 1) it is a belt-andsuspenders approach to a virulent attack, and 2) over a long period glycol will evaporate from the wood; especially, in areas exposed directly to the sun and the high temperatures that result.


If there is any question about water extracting the glycol or the borates, you can retreat periodically with glycol on any surface, painted or bare, and with borate solutions on bare wood.
Glycol's toxicity to humans is low enough that it has to be deliberately ingested (about a half cup for a 150 lb. human); many millions of gallons are used annually with few precautions and without incident. It should not be left where children or pets can get at it, as smaller doses would harm them, and they may be attracted by its reported sweet taste that I have confirmed by accident. The lethal dose of borates is smaller than of glycol, but the bitter taste makes accidental consumption less likely. BORATE WOOD PRESERVATIVES: COMMERCIAL AND HOME-BREWED
Tim-BorŽ: Solid sodium octaborate; dissolves in water to make approx. a 10% solution containing 6.6% borate (B2O3); about $3/lb. plus shipping.

Ship-BorŽ: Same as Tim-BorŽ; $19.95/lb. plus $2 shipping.
Bora-CareŽ: 40% solution of sodium octaborate in ethylene glycol; 27% borate content; $70/gal. plus shipping.
Home-Brew Water Solution of Borates:
All percentages for this recipe and the others here are percentages by weight. Based on U.S. Navy spec. of 60% borax-40% boric acid (this ratio gives the maximum solubility of borates in water); 65% water, 20% borax, 15% boric acid; 15.8% borates; borax costs 54 cents/lb. (supermarket), boric acid costs about $4/lb. in drug stores (sometimes boric acid roach poison, 99% boric acid, is cheaper in discount stores); equiv. to Tim-BorŽ or Ship-BorŽ at 30 cents/lb. To make this solution mix the required quantities and heat until dissolved. The boric acid, in particular, dissolves slowly. This solution is stable (no crystals) overnight in a refrigerator (40°F.), so can be used at temperatures at least as low as 40°F.

Home-Brew Glycol Solution of Borates:
This is equivalent to Bora-CareŽ diluted with an equal volume of glycol to make it fluid enough to use handily; 50% glycol antifreeze, 28% borax, 22% boric acid. To make a stable solution you mix the ingredients and heat till boiling gently. Boil off water until a candy thermometer shows 260°F. This removes most of the water of crystallization in the borax. This solution is stable at 40°F and has a borate content of 26%. With antifreeze at $6/gal. and borax and boric acid prices as above, this is equivalent to Bora-CareŽ at about $15/gal.
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Old 10-25-2012, 03:47 PM   #5
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Very interesting.
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Old 11-13-2012, 08:50 AM   #6
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Good post EMD. That's what I have been reading today. To sum it up, the easiest thing to do is get Glycol Based antifreeze all over the area. It will penetrate in and even through most paints and sealers. I am going to use a Syring to inject into suspect areas. Supposedly, it kills any thing organic and keeps killing them. It takes a while to work and you still hae to dry the area out completely before resealing or using a penetrating epoxy to harden it up.
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