Mold is often the bane of a homeowner’s existence. It can be extremely hazardous, and can cause many adverse health issues if someone is exposed to it for too long. Unfortunately, many people do not understand exactly what mold is, what should be done to prevent it from entering your home, and how to go about toxic mold cleanup. Here is everything that you need to know about this harmful substance.
What is mold?
Mold is a form of fungus — there are over 3,000 species! — that grows and thrives in moist environments. Some mold can be especially toxic and can cause many health hazards if inhaled. Mold loves to be wherever water is, and will start to grow after just 24 to 58 hours in a moist environment.
Inspecting for mold
It doesn’t always take a professional to check your home for mold. Some signs that there is mold in your house include:
- A funky odor. If a room or area of your home smells moldy, investigate until you find the source.
- Signs of water problems, like wet stains or surface abnormalities on your walls and ceilings
- Water leaks or condensation. If you have recently experienced a flood, be on the lookout for signs of mold development.
- Lastly, visible signs of mold growth require immediate attention. Especially if you see black mold — typically seen on carpets, ceilings, walls, even insulation — it may be toxic mold. This type of mold is incredibly dangerous, so contact a professional right away. Don’t attempt to deal with it yourself.
Inspecting for mold can also impact your health. Here are some toxic mold symptoms to watch out for :
- Consistent coughing and sneezing
- Eye irritation
- Chronic fatigue
How to prevent mold
To prevent mold from growing in your home, you will need to ensure your house stays as dry as possible. Considering 98% of basements will suffer from water damage in their lifetime, here are some tips to keep your home as dry as you can:
1. Keep your gutters clean. If they are overloaded with dirt and debris, then the water will have nowhere to go and will seep down your walls and pool at the foundation of the house.
2. Keep your roof properly insulated. Ice, snow, and rain can all make their way into the roof and cause cracks and holes in your ceilings.
3. Slope your landscaping away from the foundation of your house. This way the water will flow away from your home, and not into it!
4. Invest in a basement waterproofing membrane. These are installed by basement waterproofing specialists and will ensure that the water stays where it belongs — outside!
Waterproofing your entire home is crucial to limit mold growth. Contact a mold inspecting specialist today if you have any other questions!