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Top 5 Signs You May Have a Mold Problem
Sunday, July 24, 2016

Mold stinks, literally and figuratively. While a few small spots here and there may not seem like much, they are actually signs that serious structural rot and potential respiratory problems are escalating right inside your home.

What is Mold & Why Is It Such a Big Deal?

In scientific terms, mold is a multicellular (eukaryotic) fungus. It requires three things to live: moisture, organic material and the right temperature. In the right (or wrong) conditions, your home provides all three. Unaddressed leaks, inadequate ventilation and/or increased humidity levels provide moisture, structural materials provide organic material and comfortable indoor temperatures are just right for mold.

As mold feeds on structural components, they decay and can cause widespread damage that is costly to repair. Plus, the more mold there is, the more reproductive spores it releases. Mold spores can cause allergies and serious respiratory problems. According to the CDC, chronic exposure to mold spores can cause:
  • Nasal stuffiness
  • Eye irritation
  • Wheezing
  • Skin irritation
  • Minor/major asthma attacks
  • Chronic respiratory irritation
Since mold spores are microscopic, and are found just about everywhere, they’re impossible to eradicate. Thus, the best thing you can do to eliminate mold exposure is to maintain a dry, well-ventilated home. 5 Signs Your House Might Have Mold
  1. Leaks or moisture problems. Have you experienced a recent leak or do you see evidence of water leaks in walls, ceilings, around windows or doors, or up in the attic? Are your windows prone to condensation? All of these are signs that moisture/humidity levels may be sufficient for harboring mold.
  2. Visible moldy patches. You may even see visible evidence of mold on areas of your wall and/or ceiling. They will appear grey, black, green or blue-ish in color. Typically mold patches are round or spotty looking, although not always.
  3. Musty smell. Ever smelled a moldy piece of bread? Remember that musty smell near the showers in the high school locker room? That scent is a sure sign mold is lurking somewhere nearby. It’s most common in basements, attics, bathrooms, laundry rooms and underneath the kitchen sink since these areas have ready access to moisture and are more prone to mold growth. Old carpet and carpet pads can also harbor mold. In truth, mold can grow just about anywhere if conditions are right.
  4. Allergies or respiratory problems. This one seems rather ambiguous since allergies are caused by so many things. However, respiratory sensitivity to mold will diminish when you’re away from the source and flare up around mold. So, if respiratory problems seem to clear up when occupants are at school or at work, and become worse when they’re return home again, mold may be the culprit.
  5. It tests positive for mold. You can purchase a simple mold testing kit at a local hardware store. Use the kit to test air samples and specific surfaces, send it into the manufacturer and you’ll receive results in a matter of days.
It’s Easy to Control/Prevent Mold

If you have a mold infestation and/or mold has caused serious damage, it must be cleaned and moisture problems must be fixed or mold will come back. Click Here for more information about mold eradication.

You can prevent mold by:
  • Addressing leak/moisture problems immediately.
  • Installing efficient HVAC equipment that integrates humidity control.
  • Replacing outdated windows.
  • Sealing cracks in/on exterior walls, roof lines, chimney, door/window frames and any exterior electrical/plumbing penetrations.
  • Using adequate whole-home ventilation, specifically in the kitchen, bathrooms, laundry room and basement.
  • Drying and cleaning thoroughly after a flood or major leak.
Suspect mold damage may have gotten the best of your home? Schedule an inspection with Midwest Property Pros.


 

 

 

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