How to Get Mold Off of a Backpack

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A backpack can look good as new again after it’s cleaned.

During the off-season, backpacks might simply get thrown in a pantry, closet or even somewhere in the basement. When a backpack is left to lie around, especially in a space that is damp, dark and not well ventilated, mold can definitely become an issue. However, when you find mold on a backpack, this does not necessarily mean that you have to toss it and purchase a new one. You might be able to remove the mold and the mold stains.


Step 1

Shake the backpack out outside, well away from your home. This will cause mold spores to spread, so protect yourself with a face mask.

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Step 2

Brush down the backpack with a thick-bristled brush. Stay outside to avoid spreading mold spores inside the house.


Step 3

Create a mixture with 1 qt. of water and 2 tbsp. of either bleach or lemon juice. Be sure to double-check that the fabric of the backpack is colorfast if you use bleach; test the mixture in an inconspicuous spot.

Step 4

Wipe down the backpack thoroughly with this solution using a rough sponge. Scrub vigorously areas that are stained by mold.


Step 5

Rinse the backpack off in a utility tub or with a hose outside.

Step 6

Lay the backpack in the sun to dry. Turn it over frequently so the sun gets to all sides. This will help to eliminate any remaining mold spores.

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