Mold is sneaky. It hides in dark places and has a ravenous appetite. It can be harmful to your health and property and can be difficult to remove. While you may be focused on mold prevention in your basement, it’s important to recognize that it can grow in just about any other place in your home.
There are over 100,000 different species of this living organism called fungus. Each has different characterizing features and varying toxicity. All, however, require moisture to grow and organic matter to derive energy. If your skin is crawling thinking about what might be lurking behind your walls or under your carpeting, you should do an inspection. Obviously, mold prevention is preferred, but you’ll want to be sure your home is spore-free first.
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Professionals are available to perform a comprehensive mold inspection and identification process, but unless you have already discovered a major mold problem, you can perform the initial investigation yourself. Be sure to protect your eyes, nose and skin from spore exposure by using goggles, a mask/respirator and gloves.
Before you begin, think about any past water leaks or floods your home has experienced. As mold thrives in dark, damp places, it’s important to recall where leaks originated. This is where you should start. Look for visible signs of mold growth or damp, musty odors. Remember what moldy bread smells like, and let your nose guide you.
Next, search rooms where family allergies seem worse. A whopping 10-20% of people worldwide have a sensitivity to mold spores, so it’s possible someone in your family may be experiencing symptoms. Congestion, wheezing, asthma, eye irritation or skin rashes could be exacerbated by exposure.
Carefully check near pipes, sinks and other typical water sources. Kitchens, bathrooms and laundry rooms, where moisture accumulates with condensation and humidity, can breed mold. While you may not see a big, furry black spot on your wall, look for water damaged materials that are warping or bulging. Cracked or peeling paint, stains, discoloration and even small dots of mold growth can signal a larger colony nearby.
Read more about mold prevention at improvenet.com