Mold is everywhere! Yeah, you hear it right. But at the same time, you don’t want to see it in your homes. That fact may be partially true if you are up keeping regular maintenance and cleaning of your home. Keep in mind that mold is born where there is the absence of cleanliness. So, the damp surfaces like the area under the sink, window sealants, bathtubs, and showers, etc. For the purpose, you can use a good mold test kit and check the presence of mold in your houses.
Well, most of our concern is to focus on knowing different types of molds you can find in your home. The knowledge will also let you aware of different areas where they can be found. So, you would be more careful from next time regarding those places.
- Stachybotrys or Black Mold
- Prevent Common Molds in First Place
- Mold Testing in your Homes
Are you aware of molds on wooden surfaces? This is the one we are talking about. It generally appears in brown, pink, or black color but gradually becomes dark. So, be careful while touching the suspicious wooden surfaces. The touch may lead to skin, eye, or nail infections. Thus, it’s better not to have direct contact with those areas by your skin.
Acremonium is another toxigenic mold found in systems like cooling coils, humidifiers, window sealants, and drain fans. It’s again a grey, pink, white, or orange-colored mold. Initially, it starts moist and small but slowly turns into a powder. Another essential thing to note is that it is dangerous to health and includes risks like immune system diseases and bone marrow. The inefficiency of brain function may also be caused due to such mold.
You can check its presence alongside black mold or Stachybotrys.
Aspergillus is a kind of common mold found basically in every American home. Being classified as allergenic, this mold is dependent on different species. The thick layer of this mold can be formed over walls in the shape of long-flask pores. Colors may vary based on 185 species of Aspergillus. However, the risk of inhaling this mold is said to be minor who can cause respiratory infections, inflamed lungs, and allergic reactions.
But, there arise serious issues when its several species produce toxic carcinogen called aflatoxins.
Stachybotrys or Black Mold
As the name suggests, this mold is either black or green. And, the texture is kind of slimy with toxigenic classification. Well, you are now wondering about its place of presence. So, if you observe such black or green mold-like substance over damp areas like ducts, walls, or air-condition pipes, it will be most likely a black mold. It is toxigenic because of the creation of toxic compounds like mycotoxins.
Such a compound can cause severe breathing concerns like depression, sinus infection, asthma attacks, fatigue, and so on. Stale smell? It’s a Stachybotrys, then.
White Trichoderma mold is present in the form of green wooly patches. It is another allergenic mold with five sub-species. And, the places where you can find it are damp wallpaper, carpeting, and other similar surfaces. The areas like wet fabrics and moist condensation (HVAC ducts and A/C filters) are also known as the home of such mold.
Penicillium is an indoor mold found in furnishings, insulation, damaged furniture with water, carpeting, and more. The appearance is somewhat bluish-cum-greenish in a velvety texture. Although it’s an allergenic mold also used in the production of various antibiotics. At the same time, the frequency of its spread is substantial. All in all, this velvet-like mold is found in water damaged areas for which you can use a good mold test kit.
It’s again a moisture-loving mold found in various rooms of your home. The mold is present in high moisture areas like condensation or bad water damage. Well, it’s an indoor as well as outdoor mold which can be allergic and infectious to humans. The severely damaged places with this black-colored mold are walls, floors, especially the ones who have experienced floods.
Chaetomium is another cotton-textured mold generally found in water-damaged places. Its basic appearance is white, which gradually becomes dark with time from brown to gray to black. Water-damaged buildings are the homes to this kind of mold. So, you can find it explicitly in the basement, roofs, drywall, and pipes. Remember to watch for a stale kind of smell.
Its common infections include nail and skin.
Alternaria is an allergic mold with mild reactions like watery eyes, cough, hives, itchiness, and so on. It also appears in velvety texture with brown or dark green hairs. At the same time, you can find it in both indoors and outdoors. Again, it’s a home in damp areas like shower, sink, dimly lit, or dark places outside the home. You can also experience health problems like asthma attacks with this kind of mold.
Fusarium is a toxic mold with white, pink, or red color. It spreads very quickly as compared to other molds. You can typically find it in areas like wallpaper, carpet, and other fabrics. Also, make sure to check food for this mold as it can cause severe allergies like damage to the nervous system, and worse or sore throat. Prolonged contact with fusarium can lead to life-threatening conditions such as brain abscess or bone infections.
Mucor is an allergenic mold in gray or white color with thick patches. Mucor builds their homes in air conditioning units, damp carpets, HVAC ducts, and other moist places. The risks exposing to this mold include flu-like or asthma symptoms. If it goes severe, you can have fungal infections like mucormycosis, which can damage your nose, eyes, lungs, sinuses, and brain.
Prevent Common Molds in First Place
“Prevention is better than cure.”
Let’s apply this famous saying in the prevention of molds also. As we have observed that molds usually occurs in damp or wet surfaces that are not regularly dried or cleaned. Using a mold remover can only work if you follow daily cleaning practices inside as well as outside your home.
So, do your best and fix any leakage of pipes, if it exists. Also, remember to dry out wet areas regularly and clean wooden floors, carpeting, and floors. Buying an old home? Check throughout for any growing mold problem. Well, you can also use proper cleaning products like air purifiers for efficient clean-up.
Some air purifiers come with advanced technology, which is excellent at removing spores of mold. It purifies the air and prevents further contamination of the home.
Mold Testing in your Homes
Given below are some specifications on simple mold testing in your homes. Kindly observe each point to consider different places of molds and how to test whether they are mold or just dirt.
Differentiate between dirt and mold
There’s a simple formula to distinguish between dirt and mold. Well, most of the time, mold is unmistakable, but you can confuse between large growths of dirt and mold. To test for the presence of mold in a particular, take 1 part bleach per 16 parts water. If it’s coming out of the surface or dabbing of bleach becomes gradually light over the area, it is most likely mold.
Take help of a screwdriver
You can simply take a screwdriver or other sharp tool and hit the suspected area. If it comes out as crushing, most probably, it’s a mold where rot has taken place. It is most likely another kind of mold except mildew. Generally, this is because mildew is not that harmful to your home’s structure.
Are there any plumbing leaks?
Become a reasonable observer and check for any such plumbing leaks in your house. Remember, we have to keep our house away from damp surfaces. So, it’s more than essential to check for plumbing leaks because mold near water pipes, icemaker lines, waste lines, and other plumbing fixtures is significantly harmful.
It’s not that leak is always present near mold. You can also check for leaks at some distance further away from actual mold presence. Once you are successful in finding the leak, go and fix it!
Maybe your duct is not insulated correctly which can cause harmful molds in the pipe section. Moist and warm air condenses that further forms water over ducts. Then, it carries cold air through cold or attic space. So, if your duct is under condensation, it means there is some vapor barrier missing or improper insulation. Eventually, water saturates via insulation, and mold spores and drywall take birth.
Distinguish Mold and Mildew
Different types of mildew and molds are present, for which you have to find two things in common. The first point is that it digests most of the organic world around itself. The second point is that they require moisture, so little digestive enzymes can even go to work. Molds are neither plants nor animals. They are simple microorganisms containing spores and enzymes. They also reside within the fungi kingdom.
Check for outside leaks
If you see for mold on exterior ceiling or walls, check for if any leak is present there. After observing the reference point as the door for the presence of the moldy area, find a suspected spot on ceiling or wall. Carefully inspect roof flashing, nearby vents, window wells, decks, and anywhere on the wood where it is rotting. Look for downspouts and slopes of ground emptying next to the wall. If the area around it gets moistened or too wet into the slab or foundation, it’s an area of persistent dampness.
Make sure to install flashing while you’re fixing the leak properly.
So, it’s all on different types of molds you can find in-home plus usage of mold remover. Well, we have typically discussed various ways of mold testing in your home. Make sure to keep your house away from dampness. Do not keep any space or area in your house too wet to consider. For a quick-fix solution, if you don’t have any kind of remover, simply use water and soap.
At last, we must say, don’t get scared! It’s not a ghost or stuff like that. You just need to be more alert on saving yourself from such harmful microorganisms.
James has been working with lot’s of power tool brands like Husqvarna, Makita and WORX for over 12 years. With his passion for power tools and gardening he is helping both consumers and businesses with his expertise. He now runs the editorial team at HomeGearExpert and loves to support local charities in his spare time.