Imagine this – in your favorite room of the house, for instance your kitchen or bathroom or bedroom, there is a strange musty smell emanating from the space. You do not know where it is originating from, it is not enough to make you feel nauseous, but it is quite the unpleasant odor – and you cannot ignore it either no matter how hard you try.
This is the infamous mold, and its presence is enough to cause hazards to your home and health. There are many things you should know about it, but if the situation is dire you should call mold inspection company that covers these areas to discern the problem.
The classes of mold hazards
Did you know that not all types of mold fall under the same class in terms of their hazard levels? And yes, mold is not all the same, as there are different types of mold and your remediation strategy or the one that your preferred mold remediation professional uses will depend on its type.
There are 3 hazard classes for mold – B, A, and C.
- Class A molds – these are the most dangerous, and exposure to them usually results in coughing, headaches, severity in allergic reactions, fever, and even cancer in certain cases.
- Class B molds – are not as harmful as class A, but it can still produce allergic reactions for some people. Generally, these reactions become stronger the more you are exposed to them, as they can cause respiratory inflation issues such as breathing problems and asthma.
- Class C molds – are not hazardous to your health, and do not lead to allergic reactions. However, they still remain a problem to the beauty of your home, since they destroy wood, drywall, and paint. When they infest your home, it ruins the value of your home especially when you want to sell it.
Most of the mold in your home will be in the class B of mold – but regardless of the specific class, you need to take care of them as soon as you can locate them or signs that they are present.
The growth process of mold
Before you decide to call in a professional mold remediation team to take care of the mess that is mold growing in your home, it is important to know the growth stages and how it reproduces.
You need to note though that mold is present everywhere in the air. It does its reproduction process through the means of spores, which re airborne particles – they are microscopic though, so it is not easy to locate them. The spores will only land on materials that give them the conditions they need, also called substrates – and these are what give rise to the mold colonies.
The most important condition that molds need to thrive is a food source. This can be anything really, ranging from cotton, foods, drywall, or wood. The other conditions they require are oxygen and moisture. Note that mold cannot grow properly under ultraviolet light, so they tend to colonize darker areas of the house. The final condition they require is warmth, because cold will make the spores dormant.
As long as these conditions are in place, mold can begin to grow within 24 to 48 hours.
Where do they grow?
The thing with mold is that it can grow anywhere, as long the conditions that we have mentioned above are present. Other than that, mold tends to grow on surfaces that are organic and porous – with the most vulnerable materials being drywall, wood, as well as paper.
If mold takes root in any surface, it is nearly impossible to eliminate it entirely. Therefore, if you see mold present on these surfaces, you must remove them entirely and replace them.
In addition to that, you can also find mold growing in concrete and tiles. However, since these are inorganic surfaces, the mold is not growing on them directly. The usual case is that there is some organic material present to allow them to grow on these surfaces, such as dead skin or dust. Because they are not growing directly on the material, these are much easier to clean off – you can even use a damp cloth to wipe them off, or use a mold killer solution in garden and home stores that can help.
The basement is the riskiest place
Since we know the conditions that mold needs to thrive and grow, it is time to turn your attention to the most problematic place in the home – the basement. If you have a mold inspection team coming over, they will likely ask you about this area, as they are trouble spots for many of the mold and fungi problems in a house.
Since it is underground, it does not get enough direct sunlight, and the basement tends to have poor ventilation – so the air is moist and stale. Moreover, it is the lowest point of the house, so water always tends to flow to it when there is flooding or leaking present.
All these circumstances combine and make the basement the best breeding ground for these organisms. Due to this, it is very important to check the basement on a regular basis if you want to maintain the health of your home.
What are the signs of mold infestations?
- Strange smells that cannot be easily explained, and they tend to be musty
- Wallpapers peeling off – wallpapers are always a very good food source for mold, and it eventually forms bubbles, starts to crack, and even peels off when they begin to take root
- Spots that are dark – there are different colors of mold. If you notice that a surface has discolored or dark spots, these are probably infested areas
- Recent water damages – mold needs water to grow, so make sure you call in mold inspection services if you have experienced recent flooding.
- Health problems – its presence worsens health reactions – including cold symptoms that refuse to go away, asthma attacks, or allergic reactions.
Mold is a very common issue, but it is also one that you can prevent if you have sufficient knowledge about it. It is important to educate yourself on how it develops, so that you can control the problem – and if it is already present, calling in professional mold remediation services to resolve the issue.