Should I Throw Away Moldy Dishes? No. Here’s How To Clean Moldy Dishes

No, you don’t have to throw moldy dishes out. To clean moldy dishes, mix bleach and water in a spray bottle. Spray the mixture onto the dishes and wipe it off with a soft dish towel. Wash in soapy water, rinse and allow to dry. 

should i throw away moldy dishes

What Exactly is Mold Anyway?

Contrary to popular belief (mine especially), mold is a fungus. It grows in the form of multicellular filaments called hyphae. The growth of these filaments is seen as a faint discoloration on the surface of your dish. They appear harmless, like cute colored cotton balls but can be quite hazardous given a chance. 

Molds are found in dark, damp areas with inadequate ventilation because all they need to thrive is a certain amount of moisture. Kitchens and bathrooms, in particular, appear to be their favorite spots for obvious reasons. Molds grow from spores. When some of these spores land on moist food or other damp surfaces, they develop into molds.

The Destructive Potential of Molds

Molds are classified based on their shapes and mode of formation. They vary in their destructive potential. Some are biodegrading organisms, while others are capable of causing diseases. The biodegrading abilities of the former are useful in keeping balance in the ecosystem but destructive when they find themselves in your home and start degrading your dishes. They are especially hazardous because it makes ingesting them way more effortless, which can be life-threatening. 

The very toxic kinds of mold are those that produce mycotoxins. Exposure to this compound can cause neurological problems and death. People with mold allergies can experience symptoms like sore throat, watery eyes, and respiratory problems when exposed to mold. Thankfully, as long as you clean the dishes thoroughly with some scrubbing and wash the mold off,  you can use them without any problems.

How To Prevent Having Moldy Dishes

All molds need to survive and thrive is moisture. Here are ways to prevent having moldy dishes:

  • Mold may develop in plant soil, so don’t keep too many indoor plants.
  • Keep your home dry and moist places such as shower walls and doors well-ventilated.
  • Wet clothes should not be left in the washing machine.
  • Fix any leaks or seepage both inside and outside the house.
  • Install exhaust fans in the kitchen and bathrooms.
  • Spray mold-killing treatments on shower curtains and bathroom tiles regularly.
  • In basements and other house sections where mold thrives, use dehumidifiers and air conditioners, especially in hot, humid conditions.

How to Clean Moldy Dishes

Method 1: Using bleach solution

  • Mix bleach and water in a ratio of about 1 to 800 to prepare the solution. This means a quarter teaspoon of bleach would be enough for one quart of water.   
  • Pour in a spray bottle or a big bowl for soaking. 
  • If you are spraying, do so liberally on your dishes and just let them sit for some minutes. Wipe them off with a soft dish towel and rewash them with warm soapy water to eliminate any lingering remains of the cleaning solution.  
  • If you’re soaking your moldy dish in the solution, leave it to soak in it till you are satisfied. After this, wipe the dish down with a clean dish towel and rewash them thoroughly, 
  • Finally, leave them to dry.

Method 2: Use a hydrogen peroxide solution

  • Pour 3 percent hydrogen peroxide into a spray bottle to make this solution. 
  • If there is a lot to clean up or a few days’ worth of mold growth on the dishes, let the hydrogen peroxide lie on them for approximately 15 minutes before rinsing them with warm water and cleaning as usual.
  • Air-dry the dishes before storage.

Method 3: Use a baking soda mix

  • Combine a quarter spoonful of baking soda with a spray bottle almost full of water (about 16 oz) and shake vigorously until completely dissolved. 
  • Spray on your moldy dishes and allow them to rest for roughly 10 minutes.
  • Clean your dishes well using a scrubbing brush.
  • If you’re unsure whether the mold has been eliminated, repeat steps 1 – 3.
  • After you’ve thoroughly cleaned away all of the molds on your dishes, remember to wash them as usual.
  • Dry the dishes before storage.

Method 4: Using white vinegar on your moldy dishes

  • Pour the white vinegar into a bowl and soak your dishes, or pour it into a spray bottle without diluting it.
  • Spray over your dishes. 
  • Wash your dishes as usual after you’re confident that the mold has been eliminated. 
  • Allow the vinegar to soak for an hour if you have a more complicated mold build-up on your dishes. After the timer has expired, scrape your dishes with a scrubbing brush to remove any remaining stains or fungus.
  • Dry thoroughly before storage.

Vinegar’s moderate acid destroys 82 percent of known molds and can help prevent subsequent outbreaks. It is also the cheapest method, and it is more effective when undiluted.

Method 5: Using Borax to get rid of the mold

Borax is well-known for cleaning bathrooms and many stains, so it’s worth mentioning here. Here’s how you use it to get rid of mold:

  • Pour a cup of Borax into warm water. 
  • Place the dishes into the mixture.
  • Using a sponge, scrub the mold off the dishes.
  • Take the dishes out and wash them with your usual dishwashing soap. 
  • Rinse the dishes and leave them out to dry.

FAQs About Moldy Dishes

Does boiling Water get rid of mold?

A temperature of 60 to 70 degrees Celsius kills the majority of mold. As a result, boiling is usually sufficient to destroy mold.

Why do dishes get moldy in the dishwasher?

The dishwasher is almost always moist due to the function it performs. This makes it a suitable place for mold to develop. Leaving your dishes in there for a long time is one of the things that makes them moldy.

What does mold do to your health?

Bodily contact with mold spores or inhalation can lead to sneezing, sinus infections, and skin rash. Toxic mold also produces mycotoxins that can lead to neurological problems when inhaled. Mold can cause diseases like sinusitis, pneumonitis, and mold-induced asthma.

Scroll to Top