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How to Prevent Mould On Wood Pallets?

January 18, 2023

Wooden pallets are incredibly versatile and robust, but because they are made out of organic material, they are at risk of contamination by bacteria, pests, and fungi if they are not properly treated or cared for. Mould is a common type of fungi that flourishes in damp, dark, poorly ventilated environments and can cause serious damage to your pallets or contamination of your goods if left undetected or untreated.  So how do you prevent your wooden pallets from becoming mouldy? Follow these five simple steps to keep your pallets in optimum condition.


  1. Keep pallets out of the rain

Moisture is absolutely essential to mould growth, so the number one thing you can do to prevent your pallets from becoming mouldy is simply to keep them as dry as possible. Although pallets are designed to withstand some exposure to water, it is better to avoid exposing them to rain if possible. If you do need to transport pallets in the rain, make sure you cover them in plastic to minimise the moisture they absorb.


2. Don’t keep pallets in a truck or trailer for extended periods

While storing pallets in a truck or trailer is usually unavoidable during transportation, it’s important to ensure they are unpacked into a proper storage facility as quickly as possible upon arrival. Trucks and trailers are usually warm, dark, and humid, making them the perfect environment for mould to grow and flourish.


3. Store pallets off the ground

Elevating your pallets off the ground prevents mould growth in two ways. Firstly, it encourages better ventilation and airflow and secondly, it safeguards against the possibility of the pallets absorbing water or moisture off the ground.


4. Store pallets in dry, well-lit, well-ventilated location

If you’re storing your pallets outdoors, they should be completely covered, elevated, and thoughtfully positioned in order to maximise airflow. For indoor storage or warehousing, pallets should be placed in a well-lit area close to doors, windows, or other sources of ventilation. 


5. Leave spaces between pallets 

If you’re stacking rows of pallets side-by-side, make sure you leave a decent space between them to allow the air to flow more freely. 


How to treat mould

While following these steps should prevent mould from occurring in the first place, if you have pallets that are already mouldy, you can try to salvage them, although in some cases the damage may be irreversible. If you’d like to try to treat mouldy pallets you can follow these two steps.


  1. Pressure wash

Use a pressure washer to remove all traces of visible mould from your pallets.


2. Dry

You can dry out pallets either using a kiln or by placing them in the direct sun. In order to eradicate mould your pallets must be dried to a moisture content of less than 19%.


3. Implement mould prevention strategies

If the above steps worked to get rid of the mould on your pallets, then you’ve got another chance to get your pallet storage right. Make sure you follow the five tips above to keep your pallets mould free.


Cooperage Pallet mould repairs

If you’ve got old, damaged or mouldy pallets, why not speak to the experts in pallet assessment and repairs? Cooperage Pallets can assess the condition of your pallets and perform any repairs required to get them back up to scratch. We can also advise you on how to store and maintain your pallets so that you get the most out of your investment. 


Contact us today to speak to our pallet experts or to request a quote.