Mold is a part of our natural environment but can become dangerous fast if it gets out of control inside your home.
Outside, mold is actually very beneficial to the ecosystem. It breaks down dead organic material like dead leaves or fallen trees, with regrowth as its end goal. Since the outdoors is so vast in surface area and the air is constantly being filtered, we do not experience such a reaction to mold as we do when it is indoors.
When mold spores begin to grow in a damp place indoors, it has the potential to cause health problems that can be severe. Allergic reactions such as sneezing, coughing, and hay fever-like symptoms are normal when you encounter mold. However, these allergens will become toxic if left untreated or can (in some cases) cause irreversible health conditions.
Do you have mold in your home? Let’s explore some common places that you could check.
Common Places to Look for Mold in a Home
The following are some common places to look out for mold in your home provided by the EPA (United States Environmental Protection Agency).
Since mold feeds off of damp areas, make sure your bathrooms are always properly ventilated. With a running shower, bathtub, toilet, and sink…there is more water in this area of your house than most. If you have a fan, run it during every shower to keep moisture from sitting. If you do not, open a window and let the room air out.
Cold, damp basements are also a common area in which mold can grow. Check walls, ceilings, and along piping for signs of mold growth. A dehumidifier is a great solution when balancing the temperature of a basement, especially during the summer months.
If your home has an attic, it is important to check the ceiling and surrounding walls. Being the first room below your roof, you never know when a small leak could lead to a bigger issue inside. For most, an attic is often used for storage or is rarely ever accessed on a normal basis. This makes it all the more important to check.
Unexpected Places of Mold Growth
Always make sure to keep an eye out for any potential mold growth throughout your home. You may find mold growing in places you never even thought about. It could be under the sink, in a closet, or behind a piece of furniture. Maybe it started growing because a spill behind the dresser was never properly cleaned. Or, that leaky pipe you had a couple of months ago left an untreated water stain, accumulating mold growth as time passed.
Warning Signs of Mold Growth
Here are a couple of things to look out for when searching for mold in your home according to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control & Prevention) :
- Dark spots on floors, walls, and ceilings.
- Musty odor of mildew or dirty water.
- Increase in respiratory or allergy reactions.
- Condensation along windows, pipes, or other surfaces.
Mold Outbreak Prevention
Keep in mind these steps to prevent mold from spreading in your home.
- When spills or leaks occur, act quickly to clean them up. Sitting water can produce all sorts of bad bacteria and mold can be growing after only 48 hours.
- Clean and repair your roof and gutters regularly.
- Keep air conditioning units clean and dry, making sure all connected pipes are secured.
- If possible, keep your humidity levels low. Act quickly to dry any wet surface along the windows…as condensation is a key indicator of high humidity.
- If your home is prone to flooding, make sure the clean-up is thorough. Dry up all moisture and keep the area ventilated through open windows and/or fans.
I have mold in my home, what do I do?
If you find mold in your home, do not panic! There are many ways in which mold can be eradicated efficiently and effectively. Thankfully, ServiceMaster offers plenty of options when it comes to getting rid of mold.
ServiceMaster by Rice is a service that will ensure the protection of your home with mold removal and remediation services. With the latest EPA-registered tools, products, and developed processes, we can detect and remove any mold in your home. If your home is damaged due to mold, we can repair and restore any damages with remediation.
After removal, ServiceMaster by Rice can walk you through the process of continued prevention of mold in your home. We pride ourselves in our mold removal services and want to help you take care of your home before it begins to endanger the health of you and your family.
Have any questions? Give us a call! We would be happy to assist you in the next steps for mold removal and prevention.