How to Clean a Moldy Leather Baseball Glove

If I asked a baseball player what equipment he loves and cares for the most, 9 out of 10 times, he would point to his gloves. As weird as it may seem to an onlooker, it’s a proven fact that most players form a special bond with their baseball gloves.

Because of the nature of baseball gloves, they demand a lot of time and attention from the player. You need to break them in, clean them after each game, condition them from time to time, and also store them a certain way if you want to make them last. And after putting in so much work behind it, it’s natural to form this connection with your glove.

But the thing is, accidents do happen. And if you suddenly wake up one day and see that your baseball glove has a mold problem, it would no doubt infuriate you. Mold is a big problem, and you need to clean it right away if you want your baseball glove to survive the next couple of games.

Cleaning mold and mildew from a baseball glove require a bit more extra work, though. You can’t go about it the way you would normally clean your glove. To get rid of mold, you would need to use a solution of rubbing alcohol and water.

In this article, I will talk more about the subject and help you figure out how you can remove the mold from your leather baseball glove instead of tossing it in the garbage. Let me show you how.

How to Remove Mold from Leather Baseball Glove

You may already know this but for those that don’t know – mold and mildew are basically a form of fungi. They can develop in damp areas, and once they spread, it can be pretty hard to eliminate them. And since they spread through spores, their spread can be difficult to contain, to say the least.

How to Remove Mold from Leather Baseball Glove
Image Credit: McCarthy

That is why you should clean it the moment you notice it in your baseball glove. This is another good reason why you should never store your wet baseball glove before drying it properly. To remove the mold, you first need to clean the glove and condition it with a glove conditioner.

To clean the mold, I like to make a solution of 1 cup of rubbing alcohol and 1 cup of water. This solution is pretty effective at clearing up mold, but applying it directly to your glove can damage the leather. So, what are your options here?

Well, you should always apply the solution indirectly, which in this case means dipping a clean cloth in it and squeezing it to remove any excess. Then gently rub the cloth over the entirety of the glove, not just the affected areas.

The reason is that the spores from mold are undetectable, and by cleaning the entire surface, you will also be cleaning any spores that might have been left behind.

But you are not done just yet. After removing the mold, you need to dry the glove. Storing your glove in this condition can leave it damp, which can lead to another mold infestation. I like to dry it in front of a cooling fan, but you can also keep it in a well-ventilated room overnight.

However, make sure you don’t expose the glove to direct sunlight. The UV rays from the Sun can cause the leather to crack. And that is a clear indication that your baseball glove will not last any longer.

Once the glove is dried, use your favorite leather conditioner. Start from the palm area of the glove and work your way outward toward the finger. Make sure you use a gentle circular motion to work the conditioner into the leather properly.

Here are a couple of things that you might want to remember about using a leather conditioner –

  • Don’t apply too much conditioner in one coat. Instead, it’s better to go with multiple coats after the previous coating dries.
  • Make sure you are using a sports-approved baseball glove conditioner or a proven alternative glove oil. You do not want to use oils that can over-soften the leather.

How to Prevent Mold on a Leather Baseball Glove

The trick to preventing mold from ever becoming a problem in your leather baseball glove is to practice proper storage. You see, mold can form only under certain conditions. And as long as you understand and can prevent these conditions, you should not have to deal with them.

How to Prevent Mold on a Leather Baseball Glove

The first thing you need to remember is to dry your wet baseball glove. If you decide to store it in the locker after the game, the trapped air in the locker, combined with the moisture in the glove, can cause mold to start forming.

After each game, you should also wipe your glove before you store it. You also want to avoid keeping it in the equipment bag for a long time if you can. Trapped air can lead to humidity, which can, in turn, lead to mold infestations.

So, long story short – don’t take the easy way out when you plan on putting away your glove. Make sure you know how to store your baseball glove the right way if you want to prevent mold infestations.

The Bottom Line

I know things can seem dire if you notice mold growing in your leather baseball glove. But you can take solace in the fact that it doesn’t have to mean the end for your glove. There are definitely ways you can fix the issue.

But going forward, you need to be extra careful in how you take care of your baseball glove. I hope my article could help you remove mold from your baseball glove and restore it to its peak condition. Cheers!

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