Have you ever walked into the tack room only to find your tack covered in a yellowish-green mildew? Mildew can quickly grow on tack when there is extra humidity in the air, or when the tack sits unused for a period of time. These tips can help you to get rid of tack mildew.
Clean Your Tack
The best way to get rid of mildew and to prevent it from returning is to clean your tack thoroughly and regularly. Ideally, you should clean your tack after every use, though that isn’t always practical. Cleaning your tack every 3 to 4 days can help to prevent mildew buildup.
If your tack has mildew on it already, then start by wiping the mildew off with a soft cloth. Then, thoroughly clean your tack. Avoid getting your tack too wet during the cleaning process, and let your tack thoroughly dry before you put it back in the tack room. Make sure that you clean your tack outside of the tack room so that you don’t set the mold spores loose inside the room.
Get Rid of Humidity
Humidity allows mildew to grow more quickly. Putting a dehumidifier in your tack room during the summer months can help to reduce the amount of moisture in the room, inhibiting mildew growth. Be sure to empty the dehumidifier regularly.
If installing a dehumidifier isn’t possible, then consider using the disposable dehumidifier bags and packets available for home use.
Install a Window
Mildew grows in dark areas. If your tack room doesn’t yet have a window or two, consider installing some. If there are already windows, then make sure to leave the shades up to allow as much sunlight into the room as possible.
Leave Saddle Pads Outside
Draping a wet saddle pad over your saddle to dry is a common practice, but it actually introduces extra moisture to your tack room. Leave saddle pads outside of your tack room to dry. If you spot mildew on the saddle pads or saddle covers in your tack room, then they will all need to be washed. To truly rid the room of mildew, clean everything at once, wipe down the room’s walls, and air out the room before returning your items to the tack room.
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Fighting mildew takes some vigilance, but it’s an important step in keeping your tack in good condition.