What is Mold?
If you live in a damp climate, household mold detection is important! Mold is a rapidly reproducing fungus that feeds on organic matter, that is or has been decomposing. For example, your bread may have been left out for several days. It began to decompose, thus becoming a feast for these microscopic little guys. Golden Rule: don't EAT moldy bread! Mold can create food poisoning and that is something nobody wants!
Fortunately, most molds are common and harmless playing an important role within the ecosystem. However, they can easily thrive in conditions that are above 60 degrees and below 100 degrees; the perfect environment inside your very own home. Mold can be nearly any color - white, orange, green, black, or blue. And it is certainly happy to munch on your unprotected drywall, wood, adhesives, paint, paper, and any surface that is long overdue for a wash! It is most abundant when the surface is damp or constantly wet.
You'll most likely find mold in your high-moisture, unventilated bathroom than in your bedroom. Kitchens and ceilings, where water damage has occurred, can also create mold blooms. If you can see multi-colored patchy spots on your surfaces, chances are you've got mold company!
Common Places for Household Molds to Thrive
- Damp Ceilings
- High-Moisture Bathrooms
- Unventilated Rooms
- Bathroom Tiles and Grout Lines
- Unprotected Drywall & Gypsum Board
- Wood, Paper, and Cardboard
- Damp Basement Walls
- Old Carpeting
- Behind Kitchen Sinks and Cabinets
- Damp Insulation
- And More...
Sources of Household Mold
Since Mold is attracted to moist surfaces, locating the source of your mold should not be too difficult! Simply search for damps areas! For example, if your kitchen cabinet underneath your kitchen sink has mold inside, there is a strong possibility that your kitchen sink is leaking. Sources can include:
- Moisture from Flooding: Homes that have been flooded will contain large amounts of mold deep within the walls and insulation. All walls and insulation should be replaced.
- Leaky Roof: Damaged roofs or roofs that were built improperly can allow moisture to run unchecked into your attic and ceilings. Water will pool on top of your ceiling drywall or tiles, giving mold a perfect place to bloom.
- Humidifier: Although helpful for sleeping and breathing, humidifiers release a lot of moisture dampening everything in a room or area. Constant moisture will create the perfect surface for mold.
- Damp Basement: Basement walls and foundations are notorious for letting moisture from the outside, in. Basement cracks should be repaired. Basement walls should be waterproofed and sealed. You may also want to use a de-humidifier to keep moisture levels low.
- Damp Crawl Spaces: Left unchecked, crawl spaces can build moisture from pooled water or damp ground. Try to have your crawl space sealed, waterproofed, or filled with rocks or sand.
- Plumbing Leaks: Any leak in your plumbing will be a constant source of mold. Check pipes for leaks at every junction. Tighten leaking sections and re-apply piping glue to seal it up.
- Damp Open Windows: In cool, shaded areas moisture can hang around. After a rain, your open windows can remain damp, especially if your window trim soaked in water. Clean and dry these areas.
Essentially, any surface that remains wet for long periods of time even a few days will help mold blossom. Left alone, it will continue to grow causing potential allergies or even serious health conditions. Using proper household mold detection techniques and you'll take care of the source and the mold problem!