Does salt kill mold?

Does salt kill mold?
Does salt kill mold?

Yes, salt does kill mold! You can’t just sprinkle some salt over mold growth though. We’ll show you how to do it correctly and also reveal some interesting facts about salt and mold.

Topics Covered

  • What does salt do to mold?
  • What you should know
  • How to kill mold with table salt
  • What about other types of salt?
  • Can salt grow mold?
  • Is table salt antibacterial?
  • Conclusion

What does salt do to mold?

Salt has a dehydrating effect on organisms due to its osmotic properties. When salt comes into contact with mold, it draws all of the moisture out of the mold cells through osmosis. This dehydration process hinders the mold’s ability to survive and reproduce.

What you should know about killing mold with salt

Salt Concentration: The concentration of salt necessary to effectively inhibit mold growth can differ depending on the mold species. While certain molds may be sensitive to relatively low concentrations of salt, others may require significantly higher levels for any noticeable impact.

Growth Stage: The effectiveness of salt can also depend on the stage of mold growth. Salt may have a greater impact on mold spores or early growth stages when the mold is more vulnerable. However, as mold matures and develops protective structures, they may become more resistant to salt’s effects.

Environmental Factors: Environmental conditions such as temperature, humidity, and the substrate on which the mold is growing can also influence the efficacy of salt against different mold varieties. Some types of mold thrive in specific temperature and humidity ranges, and the presence of salt may not significantly affect their growth under such optimal conditions.

The Severity of The Outbreak: Remember that while salt can help inhibit mold growth, it may not be sufficient to address severe mold infestations. If you’re dealing with extensive mold or recurring issues, it’s advisable to seek professional assistance in mold remediation to ensure effective and thorough treatment.

How to kill mold with salt

As mentioned, you can’t just sprinkle some salt over mold. You will first have to make a saltwater solution.

Step 1: Put one cup of water into an easy-to-use spray bottle. Add 3 teaspoons of table salt and shake the bottle thoroughly.

Feel free to add a few more teaspoons of salt because the more salt there is, the better the dehydrating effect will be.

Step 2: Spray the saltwater solution directly onto the mold until it is completely soaked. Let it sit for an hour.

Step 3: Spray the saltwater solution directly onto the mold until it is completely soaked. Let it sit for an hour.

Step 3: Re-soak the mold and scrape/wash it off with a mild detergent.

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What about other types of salt?

Epsom Salt: Epsom salt, also known as magnesium sulfate, is primarily used for its therapeutic and relaxing properties in baths. While Epsom salt can help soothe skin and muscles, it does not have significant mold-killing properties. Its composition and osmotic properties differ from regular table salt (sodium chloride), which is more commonly associated with mold inhibitory effects.

Himalayan Salt: Himalayan salt, or pink salt, is a type of rock salt that is often used as a culinary ingredient and as a decorative element in salt lamps. While Himalayan salt has been associated with various health benefits, including air purification, its direct effectiveness in killing mold is limited.

The hygroscopic properties of Himalayan salt may help absorb moisture from the air, reducing humidity levels and potentially creating a less favorable environment for mold growth. However, it’s important to note that this effect is likely to be minimal and may not entirely eliminate mold issues.

Can salt grow mold?

Salt itself does not provide a suitable environment for mold growth. Mold requires organic matter, such as cellulose or other organic materials, along with moisture and suitable temperature conditions, to thrive and reproduce. Therefore, salt, being an inorganic mineral, does not provide the necessary nutrients for mold growth.

However, it’s important to note that if salt becomes contaminated with organic matter that already contains mold spores, such as food or other organic substances, mold growth can occur on the salt. In such cases, it is not the salt itself that is promoting mold growth, but rather the presence of organic matter serving as a nutrient source for the mold.

To prevent mold growth on salt or any other surfaces, it is essential to store items in dry conditions, control humidity levels, and ensure proper ventilation. Regularly inspecting and cleaning areas prone to moisture or organic material accumulation can help mitigate the risk of mold growth.

Is table salt antibacterial?

Yes, table salt does have some antibacterial properties, although its effectiveness may be limited compared to other specialized antibacterial agents. Here’s an overview of how table salt can exhibit antibacterial properties:

Osmotic Effect: Salt has an osmotic effect on bacteria, similar to its impact on other organisms. When bacteria comes into contact with a concentrated salt solution, the salt draws water out of the bacterial cells through osmosis. This dehydration process can hinder bacterial growth and survival to a large extent.

Preservation: Salt has been historically used as a food preservative due to its ability to inhibit bacterial growth. The high salt concentration creates an environment that is less favorable for bacterial proliferation, reducing the risk of food spoilage and microbial contamination.

External Disinfection: Saltwater solutions, such as saline solutions, can be used for external wound care and as a mouth rinse. The saline solution helps cleanse the affected area, reducing the bacterial load and promoting healing.

It’s important to note that while salt can exhibit some antibacterial properties, it may not be as potent or broad-spectrum as dedicated antibacterial agents. Additionally, its effectiveness can be influenced by factors such as the type of bacteria, concentration of salt, and the specific application method.


In conclusion, salt can inhibit mold growth by dehydrating mold cells through osmosis. However, the concentration of salt needed and the effectiveness can vary depending on the mold species and its growth stage.

Environmental factors also play a role. For severe mold infestations, professional assistance is recommended. Epsom salt and Himalayan salt have limited mold-killing properties compared to regular table salt. It’s important to understand the limitations of using salt and consider alternative solutions for severe mold issues.

Further reading

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