Why Do Bath Mats Get Moldy?

You might have noticed the growth of mold while cleaning your bath mats which makes you wonder why they get moldy. Mold is a fungus that usually grows and thrives in damp environments especially in the bathroom which is always humid and moist. Mold can spread quickly and it can cause harm to your health. Why does your bath mat get moldy and how can you avoid it? We will find out the answer in this article.

Why do bath mats get moldy? Bath mats can get moldy because of the lingering moisture in the bathroom because of leaky toilets, plumbing pipes, and sinks, lack of ventilation, and damp cellulose materials. The heat and moisture that gets trapped in the bathroom can cause a humid environment which makes it the perfect place for mildew and mold spores to grow.

Mold and mildew can cause health issues and should be prevented. Unfortunately, the bathroom is one of the places in your home that mold can thrive because of the humid environment. In the article below, we will discuss why bath mats get moldy. We will also talk about the different things that you can do to get rid of mold from bath mats and how to prevent it from growing in the first place.

Why do bath mats get moldy
Photo by Mikhail Nilov from Pexels

Are Bath Mats Unsanitary?

When not properly cleaned and maintained, bath mats can be unsanitary. It quickly absorbs grime and gunk. Moreover, mats that are placed in front of the toilet can contain urine and feces particles. Bath mats are also known to gather mold and mildew. Since the bathroom is the place where you take care of your hygiene, make sure that the room is hygienic as well. Keep your bathroom clean and sanitary by regularly cleaning your bath mats.

How Do You Keep Bath Mats from Getting Moldy?

Keep your bath mats from getting moldy by washing them regularly, draping them over the bathtub to keep them dry, and by ventilating the bathroom. One of the common issues that bathrooms face each day is mildew. The environment is humid which makes it the perfect place for mold to thrive. Below are some tips on how to keep bath mats from getting moldy.

Regularly Wash Bath Mats

Wash your bath mats regularly to prevent mold and mildew. It is ideal to wash bath mats twice a month depending on how soiled it gets. If your bath mats experience a lot of traffic, it is best to wash them every week. See to it that you immediately wash bath mats when you notice any spills or stains to keep them from smelling bad.

Drape Over the Tub

If you have a non-slip mat, make sure to drape it over the tub after each shower. Leaving the bath mat on the floor can invite mildew and mold. You can also try changing the mats over the shower curtain rod or a towel rack to keep them dry.

Proper Bathroom Ventilation

Another way that you can do to prevent the growth of mold is to properly ventilate your bathroom. You can run the exhaust fan while you shower and for 30 minutes after the shower. Open the window to let fresh air in and ventilate the room. You can also check out this article that we have written titled, how do you keep bath rugs from getting moldy? We have shared tips and information on how to effectively prevent mold in your mats and in the bathroom.

✅ Video – How to Prevent Mold and Mildew

Angela Brown shared the video below on YouTube. In the video, Angela explains the different types of mild that exist. She also discusses the common causes of molds and how to effectively get rid of them. Watch the video below for more tips and information.

How Often Should You Change a Bathtub Mat?

It is ideal to replace bath mats every two years. Bath mats are durable and when carefully maintained, they are built to last. The quality and use of the mat will determine how long it will last. If you notice any tear or damage in the mat, you do not have to wait for two years to replace it. You can also check out this article titled, do orchids like bathrooms? We have sjared tips and information that you can refer to.

Are Bath Mats Safe?

Bath mats are generally safe to use. However, they also come with a few hazards. There are some instances wherein the edge of the non-slip mat can cause tripping. Aside from that, traditional rubber bath mats are hard to clean especially underneath because of the suction pads that keep them in place. Over time, blackish molds can start to appear which can be a health hazard especially to those with mold allergies. You can also check out this article that discusses if bath mats are dangerous. We have shared possible dangers that can come from bath mats.

How to Wash Bath Mats

For bath mats to last, you need to properly wash them. The first thing that you need to do is to check the care tag for cleaning instructions. Some bath mats can be machine washed while others are for handwashing. How often you wash the mats will have to depend on the number of people that use them and how often it is used. Check out the tips below on how to properly wash and clean bath mats.

Read the Care Tags

Make sure that you read the care tags of the bath mats before washing. This way, you can tell what the mat is made of, the cleaning solutions that you need to use, and how to properly wash it. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when washing.

Shake Out Mats

Before washing, shake out the mats to remove excess debris. This will remove hair, dirt, dust, and other debris that got stuck into the bath mat. If the rubber mat comes with a rubber backing, you can rub it down using a microfiber cloth to get rid of excess dust and gunk. You can use a vacuum to make the task easier.

Put it in the Washer

Most bath mats are washing machine-friendly. Wash them in a warm or cold setting. The cold setting will prevent the color of the mat from running and fading. On the other hand, the warm setting can help kill bacteria. Do not use hot water for mats with rubber backing because it can melt the plastic. Individually wash bath mats to avoid overloading the washing machine.

Hand Dry or Place in a Dryer

Bath mats with rubber backing should not be put in a dryer because the heat can melt the plastic. It is best to hang them dry in an area that is exposed to sunlight and air. Drying under the sun can help remove odors. If you cannot dry outside, you can hang the bath mat over the bathtub or shower rod curtain. Bath mats without rubber backing can be dried using the dryer.

How Do You Disinfect a Bath Mat?

When disinfecting the mat, make sure to read and follow the care tag. Use disinfectants that are allowed in the care tag. You can create your disinfectant at home using products that you can easily find in your kitchen. Mix one cup of white vinegar and two tablespoons of dawn in one cup of water. Pour the mixture into a spray bottle and use it to spray the strains in the mat. Carefully scrub the mat to avoid damaging the fabric. We have also shared this article that discusses if you should put a rug in front of the toilet. Check out the article for more information about the topic.

How do I Get My Bath Mats White Again?

To maintain the whiteness of your bath mats, you can use oxygen-based bleach. Soak the mat in the bleach solution. To create the solution, add one teaspoon of bleach into a gallon of water. When using the washing machine, add laundry detergent with some water.

Can You Machine Wash Bath Mats?

Most bath mats are safe to wash in a washing machine. On the other hand, if they are made from plastic or have a rubber backing, do not put them in the washing machine, Exposure to heat from the washer can cause the plastic and rubber to melt. Make sure to check the care tag of the bath mat before washing to determine if they are washing machine friendly or are only meant for handwashing.

Can You Wash Bath Mats with Clothes?

Do not wash bath mats with clothes. Take note that bath mats are dirtier and can contaminate your clothes. These mats are placed on the floor and exposed to all kinds of germs and particles so it is not ideal to wash them with clothes.

How do You Clean a Rubber Bath Mat without Bleaching?

If you do not want to use bleach to clean rubber mats, you can make your cleaning solution. A good alternative is to use one cup of white vinegar and one cup of water. Use the mixture to scrub the mat. You can also fill a basin or tub with equal parts of water and vinegar for soaking larger mats.

Why do Bath Mats Turn Yellow?

The reason why bath mats go yellow is the bacteria called Serratia marcescens. This type of bacteria usually thrives in moist environments. While it is not harmful, it can be difficult to remove. You can use bleach to get rid of the yellow stains. Create an equal part of water and bleach solution and soak the yellow parts of the bath mat with it.

Is Vinegar or Bleach Better for Killing Mold?

Vinegar is better than bleach when it comes to killing mold. When you use bleach, the background level of mold spores will remain after the application. Take note that bleach will only kill the surface mold and not those that are hiding underneath the mat. This means that the mold will eventually grow back.


In this article, we have discussed why bath mats get moldy. We have found out that the humid and moist environment of the bathroom is the main reason why bath mats get moldy. Molds can cause health problems especially those with mold allergies. Hence, mold prevention should be done. We have also shared some tips on how to effectively prevent mold which includes regularly washing bath mats and proper bathroom ventilation. We hope that the information that we have shared has helped you learn more about the causes of molds on bath mats. You can follow the tips above on how to prevent mold from growing. Thank you for reading!

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