For a guitar player, one of the most essential skills to learn is how to clean molds off a guitar. Maintenance skills like removing molds is very important to prolong your guitar’s lifespan.
As one of the most played musical instruments in the world, the guitar also has one of the longest-expected lifespans. Even with a cheap acoustic guitar, it can still be used for an estimated ten years, while a possible 20-30 year lifespan for cheap electric guitars.
Just imagine how long you can use premium guitars when it is given regular maintenance. Nowadays, many guitars are sold-off in an auction that ages from fifty to sixty years, or even more than that.
For a guitar to last for a very long time, taking a great care of it is the only answer, which includes removing molds as they can possibly build up in your guitar as time goes on.
How to Remove Mold From An Electric Guitar?
If molds are already starting to build up in your electric guitar, then you have to treat them quickly to avoid long-term issues with your guitar.
Before treating it, first, you have to assess the situation. Molds could also grow in other areas of your electric guitar and not just in one place. You should also take a look if there are molds in your guitar strap and guitar hard case or gig bag, as it can also easily affect other parts of your electric guitar.
Spend much time making sure to locate the areas where molds are having a build-up in your electric guitar so that you can save time cleaning your guitar.
Applying vinegar is one of the most effective and cheapest ways to remove molds from an electric guitar.
To remove molds in your electric guitar, get a clean rag and pour a small amount of vinegar on it. You do not really need to soak the rag in the vinegar, but you really need to make sure that a bit of vinegar will transfer to the mold on the guitar.
Apply some pressure in the molded area and use the cloth to scrub the molds away. After some time, you will definitely see some improvements as molds will start to disappear after a bit of scrubbing.
If there are still remaining stubborn molds in your guitar, you can still pour another amount of vinegar in a separate clean rag and scrub it a little harder. If you have removed all molds in your electric guitar, then the next would be to prevent it from ever happening again.
How to Remove Mold From An Acoustic Guitar?
Aside from vinegar, you can also use alcohol in removing molds from either an electric or acoustic guitar. With the same method, pour alcohol into a clean rag and rub it in parts where molds have a build-up in your guitar. Scrub it until all the molds are removed from the acoustic guitar.
Another way to remove the molds in your acoustic guitar, especially inside the body where it is difficult to locate where the molds are having a build-up, is to use grains of rice or barley.
Pour a cup of rice into the sound hole of your acoustic guitar and cover it securely. After covering the sound hole, shake the guitar as hard as you can and as long as you can. You will really need to shake it for a long time to make sure that the molds will be removed as they will mix with the grains.
After shaking the acoustic guitar, you will need to remove the grains, preferably by vacuuming them or by any means necessary to remove the grains from the guitar’s body altogether. After the procedure, there will be an expected musty smell from the residual of the molds, but this can also be removed.
To remove the musty smell, pour a heavy dose of baking soda to absorb the smell. Just like the grains, you also need to shake the guitar body with the baking soda inside and let it rest for a couple of days. After, use a vacuum to remove the baking soda inside the guitar’s body. This will also remove the musty smell from the molds.
Why is there mold on my guitar?
Mold sometimes can be difficult to control or even prevent as it depends whether you know the possible reasons why it has started to build up or why it has since started in the first place.
The first reason could be mold spores. Mold spores are everywhere, and if given the proper conditions, they will really multiply easily. You can only try not to create the perfect environment for them to grow exponentially, but there is no way to eliminate them.
The second could be food. Mold like organic materials, and when it comes to guitar, it really has plenty of organic material that the mold can grow on. If it is not removed or cleaned, it will just continue to feed and grow.
The third would be temperature. Although mold grows in hot weather, it can also grow in cold conditions as well, even as some people found mold in their freezers.
The last would be humidity, as it is one of the leading causes of mold growth. Mold usually loves when things are slightly wet, and if you play your guitar for a long time and your hands are starting to sweat, moisture can be left in your guitar when you put it away.
Put the guitar inside the case with some moisture left in there, and the mold will love this condition. If there is a higher humidity than the average in your area, you will have to be extra careful not to expose the molds to moisture.
How To Prevent Mold From Your Guitar?
If there is a way on how to clean molds off a guitar, there are also ways to prevent it.
The first is to always clean your guitar after using it. Wipe it with a clean cloth before putting it back in its gig bag or hard case. In this way, the moisture that was left from your sweaty hands will be cleaned from your guitar.
The second would be your proper storage. A guitar should always be stored in its gig bag or hard case when it is not used and avoid being left in the open without any covers. In cases where you are experiencing a lot of damp weather in your area, it is recommended that you use a dehumidifier where you store your guitar.
All in all, it is safe to say that mold build-up can be very bad for your guitar as it leaves stains on it. It can also be bad for your health because you are also more exposed to the molds every time you use your guitar, and these can cause throat irritation, eye irritation, coughing, and wheezing.
Learning how to clean molds off a guitar is always an essential skill in order to preserve your guitar into its ultimate condition.