Finding, Removing, and Preventing Mold in Your Home

Why should I be concerned about mold problems in my home?

You may be thinking, mold is a part of the natural environment so why should I be concerned? It’s true that mold growing outdoors is not only natural, but it is beneficial to the environment. Mold helps break down organic matter, such as fallen leaves. Ah, the circle of life! But as helpful as mold is in the natural world, it is as equally damaging and dangerous once inside of your home. Mold’s number one job is to break things down so when it is given the opportunity to grow inside your house it wreaks havoc on your home furnishings. Mold can also cause serious health problems. Allergic reactions, asthma attacks, and irritation to the eyes, nose, or throat are all possible symptoms you and your family may experience if your home houses mold.

Where should I check for mold in my home?

Mold can live in any room of your home but moisture is needed for mold spores to grow. Check areas in your home that are prone to moisture, such as bathrooms and basements. Check around areas of your home that have had water leaks in the past. Also check items in your home that are prone to condensation such as pipes, ductwork, windows and the backside of furniture.

Mold can hide behind wallpaper, paneling, drywall, above ceiling tiles, and under carpet. If you smell something moldy in your home, it’s very possible that you have a hidden mold problem. Hidden mold can be tricky because you must be careful not to release a multitude of mold spores as you peel back whatever may be hiding it. In these circumstances, it may be best to call in the experts to check it out for you.

What should I do if I find mold in my home?

If you find mold in your home, you need to remove it as soon as possible. Mold must be removed not just killed because dead mold can still cause health problems. The EPA offers these guidelines for cleaning up mold. However, the EPA suggests that you hire a professional to do the job if the moldy area is more than 10 square feet, you suspect that the mold has contaminated your HVAC system, the mold was caused  by sewage or contaminated water, or you have health concerns. We’d also suggest calling in the professionals if you don’t have the time, energy, or ability to ensure that the mold is completely removed.

How do I prevent mold from returning to my home?

Remember that mold spores cannot grow unless they have moisture. To prevent mold from returning, it is vital that you fix any and all moisture problems in every room of your home. This can be a challenge in moisture-prone areas such as basements and bathrooms. Consider how you can ventilate these rooms better. Running fans or opening windows in these areas may be a good option. Also be sure that the ground outside slopes away from your foundation. This will help prevent moisture from entering your basement.

Always be alert for any water spills or leaks in your home and clean them up as soon as you notice them. If you see condensation on your windows, this could be a sign of high humidity in your home. It may be time to invest in a quality dehumidifying system and insulation for your water pipes. Running your air conditioner in the summer will also help reduce humidity.

Have you ever had a mold problem in your home? Where and how did you find the mold and how did you remove it?