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About 10 weeks ago my boiler sprang a leak causing damage to the airing cupboard walls. I reported it to my social landlord, who after numerous false starts (another story) sent a plumber out last week to replace it.

I've spent most of the weekend trying to clean the walls - they are badly damaged with a lot of black mould spores all over the walls. 

I've also had damage to my personal property which was stored in the airing cupboard. 

 

Really what I'm asking is twofold:

1) Has anyone any experience cleaning the walls of mould and damp. I've scoured the internet for help, but the advice seems to be contradictory. This weekend I used white vinegar, which although mildly helpful has not removed the unsightly black marks, or the smell of damp - which seems to have gotten worse. (Although I wore PPE, my eyes are sore and itchy - but I'll get some stuff from the chemist.)

 

2) Has anyone any advice re approaching my landlord about getting their property (walls etc) upto habitable standard. I have approached them - but all they can offer is someone to paint the airing cupboard. To be fair - the airing cupboard wasn't decorated to begin with, or advice about budgeting. They added this offer of budgeting because I said although I've written off the damaged personal possessions (which to be fair are irreplaceable), I thought it fair that I ask for help in the cost of drying out the walls.

 

Thanks in advance

Edited by Mister M

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Perhaps not a solution to the problems, but for other in the similar situations:

 

Landlords should all have building insurance which would include damage to walls and ceilings by water. Can costs be reclaimed this way?

Large tenancy operators will encourage the purchase of contents insurance and offer schemes.

For example Sheffield Council can arrange a tenants' home contents insurance scheme which insures against accidental damage, fire, theft, flooding/escape of water from £1.50 pw for £9000 for your property.

 

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Once the walls dry out it should be possible to kill the mould with a spray, it won't remove it physically, but it stops it spreading or producing spores.  You could paint over it then (or let the landlord do it).

 

Your contents insurance should cover the personal damage if you had appropriate insurance.

https://www.diy.com/departments/hg-mould-remover-spray-500-ml/136829_BQ.prd

 

Something like that.  You can find it in supermarkets as well.

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Cillit Bang black mould remover is good at removing black mould...

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The major issue is the drying out, in all likelihood.  Even with a dehumidifier on hire, which I would have thought your landlord's insurance should pay for, 10 weeks of walls being saturated could take weeks to dry out.  After a flood the major delay in getting people back into their homes is the weeks of drying the building out.

 

There's no point in trying to get rid of the mould before it's all dried out, but once it's dry any mould remover should do the trick.

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Thank you.

In a way that's quite reassuring, because I really don't want to tackle the black mould. I must be very sensitive to it, as I said -  all day today my nose and eyes have been streaming.

The landlord has been in touch about an hour ago and said that he will hurry along the people who will attempt to fix it. Though as you say it could be weeks or months before the repair people attempt to tackle it, due to the wetness. 

 

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So the boiler has been fixed or is it still leaking??

 

The wall will slowly dry, run the heating and make sure the area is well ventilated.

If you can get your hands on a proper dehumidifier that will speed things up.

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