Tell us if this sounds familiar: The first thing your kids do when you put them in the bathtub is grab their toys and put them directly in their mouths. Initially, you might not think that this is much of a problem—until you see your son squeezing his yellow duck and notice mold lurking inside the toy.
Why Mold Matters
Mold can cause respiratory problems, allergies and other health problems if it’s not contained. And while mold affects people of all ages, it can wreak havoc on those with weak immune systems such as children. So if you see bath toy mold, kill it on first sight.
Luckily, you don’t have to always toss the toys in the garbage bin once you see some greenish black spots. Here’s how to clean bath toys and make sure your child’s bath is good, “clean” fun.
Plug the Holes
Many bath toys, especially ones that squirt water or squeak, have holes in the bottom which can be a target for water to enter and mold to grow. Place a dab of hot glue on these toys before placing them in the bath and you’ll create a water-proof seal on the toy.
Boil the Toys
If you didn’t get a chance to seal your child’s toys and want to make sure they’re safe, take the toys and boil them in hot water and squeeze out any of the “yuck” from the insides with some tongs. Let them cool and dry thoroughly.
Bleach the Mold
Simply allow the toys to soak in a bleach bath overnight. To make, mix ¾ cup of bleach with 1 gallon of water. Rinse toys with water multiple times then allow to air-dry. The bleach will evaporate and all you’ll be left with are clean toys!
Pour the Vinegar
If you don’t want to use bleach, vinegar is an excellent alternative. Mix together 1 gallon of water with ½ cup of white vinegar and let the toys soak in this solution for about an hour. Give them a scrub once the mold is loose and then let them dry. If they still smell like vinegar, just do a simple rise and dry before placing them back in the toy bin.
Stick in the Wash
Running bath toys through the dishwasher also sanitizes and kills any gunk or mold that may be growing on both the inside and out. It seems like an overly simple method, but it gets the job done.
Proper Bath Toy Storage
To prevent mold from forming in the first place, create a healthy environment for storing your child’s bath toys. Consider investing in a tray or rack that will allow the water to drain from the toys, leaving them close to an open window for proper ventilation or using fans and vents to disperse leftover steam from the bath. Anything that dries the toys out will help prevent mold from forming.
Even if you know all the ins and outs of how to clean baby bath toys, sometimes that gunk still won’t go away. When that happens, simply throw them out. It’s better for your kids to play with new toys than anything that can get them sick.
And for your own health, if you want a sparkling clean bathroom free of mold and grime, count on The Maids. With over three decades in the business, we know how to get bathrooms, bedrooms and kitchens clean and healthy. Call us at 1-800-THE-MAIDS today!