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Moldy drywall behind dishwasher

Hi! We are doing a kitchen remodel. When we pulled out the old dishwasher, sink and cabinets we found mold on the drywall. The worst area was about 2' by 2' behind the dishwasher. There are also smaller sections along the 6' of drywall adjacent to that where the sink was, mostly along the bottom. The drywall is still solid - no buckling or squishiness anywhere. My contractor told us to clean it w a bleach solution, and if it still bothered me we can paint it with Kilz. My concern is that there is mold in the insulation. My contractor says the mold isn't that bad, and I shouldn't worry about. Should I trust my contractor, or should I insist on tearing out the drywall? It's a 1967 house. Thanks!

Re: Moldy drywall behind dishwasher

It's your call. If you know this contractor well and trust his judgement, you can do what he recommend. Keep in mind, that in most easy mold situation it would be enough. However if you have real concerns, cut the bad drywall out and install new, after inspecting what's behind it.

If I were doing total remodel, especially if I were to remove the cabinets, the old drywall would go, mold or not, because after so many years it smells. If your new cabinets have a backing, there would be no need to finish the new drywall behind the new cabinets.

A. Spruce
Re: Moldy drywall behind dishwasher

I would also add that it depends on the severity of the mold/mildew. If it is heavy, the whole wall is nearly black, then the drywall needs to go, there is probably something wrong inside the wall. If it is only light and spotty, then it is likely caused by the humidity of the dishwasher and it is only on the surface, not inside the wall. This leaves a whole lot of gray area for interpretation, returning us to DJ's comments about whether or not you trust your contractor's opinion/judgement. If you do, bleach the wall, prime it with Kilz if you wish, and be done with it. If you don't, open up the wall for a look, then repair the wall as necessary.

Re: Moldy drywall behind dishwasher

Original Poster:
I would tear it all out and put in new. What is the actual cost of doing it, as opposed to doing it over. Sheetrock is approx $10 per sheet, and blue wood is approx $1 linear foot.

Ask yourself these questions: How much money would it cost to have to tear it all back out again, and then install what should have been installed to begin with?

How much would you pay to keep your family or yourself safe?

You may just find something else hiding the wall that needs attention. Something that may keep your house from burning down, like a frayed wire.

Handy Andy in Mt Airy

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