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Hey guys, so my Dads old 88 (The red one) has been sitting for about the last 4 years and the poor thing is a mess.

I estimate the relative humidity inside the truck to be about 80% at times.... and the ENTIRE interior has become damp, and MOLDY!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I think I even spotted a softball sized lump of mole in the crack by the center console?? :whiteflag

Anyone got experience with mold removal and cleanup? I'm thinking I'll probably remove all the seats so I can walk/crawl around in there.... Maybe I'd be better off replacing the carpet entirely?

The seats will need a serious scrubbing, they're pretty bad. Even the red seatbelts are stained green

Should be fun...
 

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House of Windsor 4ever!
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First, you need to dry it out; if there's enough moisture to grow mold and mushrooms (yes, it's a type of mushroom), there's enough to rust the interior steel. Go buy a bag of dolomite lime (also known as Quicklime), put it in the back of the truck, cut slits in the bag and leave in there for the foreseeable future. Keep the windows and vent closed, and it'll dry that interior in from one to 4 weeks, depending on moisture content. Once dried, you can do the cleaning; I used carpet cleaner on the carpet and seats, and 409 on the other surfaces.
 

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Id be pulling everything. Carpet gets pressure washed, seat covers in the washer, spray some tilex on The seat foam and interior surfaces to kill mold then hose it down. Remove all the interior panels and remove all the padding behind them. No I've never used tilex like that but Id want to use some kind of cleaner that kills mold.
 

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I tried to specialize in odor removal when I was detailing. Unfortunately it is a losing battle. Smells tend to come back no matter what type of cleaner, enzyme oxygen scrubbers bleach odor bombs etc. Honesty, I gave up even doing it, too many failures and too time consuming. Felt horrible for customers who paid me to have the stink come back time and time again. Mold was the worst, that chit is hardy, survives in all the cracks and crevices. I have seen one thing work well at another shop fairly recently, the machine starts at 500 bucks...

Airzone XT series Ozone machine, xt2000 or xt4000 or xt6000. Will kill any living organism and the spores. Will go anywhere O2 goes, so maybe you still need to toss the seats because it may not get to the middle of the foam, dunno on that. It takes a bit of time, run it for 4 days to a week if you get the started model, treat the rubber parts with armor all first. Works great in closed environments like cars if it is kept running, you can run it in the trunk as well, again for like 3 days or so. Try other stuff first, but know this is an option down the line if it keeps coming back.
 

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House of Windsor 4ever!
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And then there's the dead pig in a Corvette:

 

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If I were you I would air it out for a few days, a few dry days. Then get a good respirator strapped on to you face and gut that whole interior. Not only is the smell likely to never go away but it's unhealthy to breathe in all those mold spores.
Then after you get the interior ripped out. Spray every surface with a bleach/water solution. I supose you should cover the important parts such as the dash. But I really would spray everything. You can do just a light spray on the windows/trim and other sensitive areas. But a good spray on the body is a good idea. You don't need to drench it just enough to get the surface good and wet.
When I do mold/mitigation jobs (I'm a GC) we do a 50/50 bleach water mix. But that might be a little strong for a vehicle since none of the surfaces need to/will soak up any of the fluid. So you should be fine with a 30-40/60-70 bleach water mix.

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the suggestions everyone, I'm gonna wait until the weather warms up a bit so I can actually use that natural sunshine to heat and dry things out... but I'll throw in some of that quicklime to start soaking up the excess moisture... This should be fun
 

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as already stated, I would take the seats and carpet out, take a pressure washer to the carpet, ive even taken a washer to my seats before in my last new cummins (my work dog had the runs all over the back seat) just don't get too close with a pressure washer, it cut a rip in it. I would then get some potent cleaner, and over do it in all the cracks and crevases along with wiping down all the surfaces you can reach. Since you have everything apart, In my last ford, I took some of the regular expandable foam and sprayed it into all the double walled interior to deaden the sound.
 

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I also have a mold issue in my bronco. rear tailgate was leaking into the cab. anyhow the mold seemed most present on the passenger seat, backs of both seats, steering wheel and some of the plastic trim/door panels. Ive removed the seats, carpet to prep the floor and get the tailgate area sealed up. Ive wiped down the steering wheel with Clorox wipes, same with the door panels. The headliner in the cab and fiberglass area appear in good order although I will probably hit them up with some sort of antibacterial spray or like mentioned throw a bag of Lime to assist in the drying process.

once leak is handled i'll be going with new peel/seal and vinyl flooring. keep us posted on your progress.
 

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aka: kemicalburns
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I found in the back area below the carpet some significant cracks in the seam sealer. I suspect this was also a way for additional moisture to get into the cab.

I got my seats cleaned up good. spent an entire day out in the sun as well to help dry and kill anything further.

Hows your progress?
 
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