How to Tell if You Have Mold in Your Home?

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Mold can be a nuisance if you have it in your home. You might start smelling something odd or nasty, and it might be making you sick without you even knowing it. Plus, it looks unappealing if it is visible. But it is knowing what to do and doing it immediately that is most important with mold.

The first step should be detecting if you have mold, and then acting swiftly towards eradicating it. Lastly, you should take preventative measures to prevent mold from happening in the first place. There might be several reasons for having mold; one of the most common ones is excess moisture in your air.

Sometimes, mold will be easily detectable by the naked eye; you might see mold spores very quickly. In other cases, it will be hidden, and the only way you will be able to detect it is via a detection kit, or with the help of a professional.

In this article, we will take a look at mold types, how they can be harmful to your health, how to detect it and remove it, and how to prevent it from happening.

Is Mold Dangerous to Your Health?

Mold can have long-lasting effects on the human body and can be especially harmful to children, seniors, pregnant women, and people with pre-existing conditions. Detecting mold in its early stages is crucial for preventing the adverse effects it can have on our health.

Some of the most prominent health organizations in the world have all researched the effects mold can have on human health. WHO and IOM (Institute of Medicine) have both published research that has found the following results:

  • Chest and nasal congestion
  • Coughing and sneezing
  • Sore throat
  • Watering and dry eyes
  • Skin irritation
  • Headaches
  • Respiratory diseases
  • Chronic conditions (cancer, pulmonary bleeding, liver problems)

These are the most common types of mold.

  • Acremonium – a small type of mold that has a delicate powdery appearance. Mostly found in humidifiers and cooling systems. It can cause diseases to bone marrow, immune system, or other organs.
  • Black mold (Stachybotrys chartarum) – perhaps the most common type of fungus that is seen by the naked eye. This type of mold collects in house corners that are usually covered by furniture. It can cause headaches, aches and pains, memory loss, and nose bleeds.
  • Alternaria – also very common and is actually usually confused with black mold. It is often found in showers, bathtubs, or areas where there are high levels of moisture. It causes asthma-like symptoms.
  • Aerobasidium – found behind wallpapers and painted wooden surfaces, and has a yellowy appearance. It causes infections to eye, skin, and nails.
  • Chaetomium – commonly found in water-damaged buildings, and has a cotton-like texture. It is dangerous for people with compromised immune systems.

There are many more types of mold, but these are the most common ones.

What are the Signs of Mold in Your Home?

If you want to detect mold in your home, you might notice some changes in your home or some unusual circumstances. Once you start to see some of these, it is highly likely that mold has developed a lot, and will be very hard to remove.

Some types of mold may be found directly in your home or on your walls, while others will occur in devices such as air conditioners, humidifiers, or even purifiers. Here are the most common telling signs you have mold.

  • Weird or unusual odors from the air conditioner – mold might start to develop in various devices, and you will begin to notice it most if it grows in air conditioners or appliances that regulate air within your household.
  • Your wallpaper will start peeling off – one of the most common types of mold is the one that collects behind the wallpaper, and it will start peeling off if there is mold. You will see a yellowy kind of fungus.
  • There will be black patterns on your wall or between your tiles – this is the most common indicator of mold. It might make sense to check behind your furniture, where mold is likely to occur, as well as between your bathroom tiles or shower tiles.
  • You might start feeling sick – constant headaches, runny nose or blocked nose, an overall feeling of illness, and a cold that won’t go away. These are all possible physical effects that mold can have on you and your body.
  • Your asthma symptoms or allergy symptoms will become worse.

How to Detect Mold in Your Home?

Detecting mold is crucial before you start removing it. Here are some of the best ways to detect it.

Self-inspection

The easiest thing that you should try first is to detect mold yourself. Check your walls, even behind the furniture, have a thorough check-up in your bathroom, between the tiles, behind wallpapers, and other places where mold is prevalent.

If you start to notice the symptoms we discussed above, then you should start looking for mold.

With a Mold Detection Kit

One of the best and most effective ways is to use a mold detection kit. We recommend this mold detection kit:

This kit is straightforward to use, as it comes with instructions on how to use it to detect mold. It will identify three mold types, and it works on all surfaces.

Seek Professional Help

If you are unable to detect mold yourself or with a testing kit, then professional help might be the only choice. You can contact your local professional that will help you detect mold and remove it.

How to Remove Mold from Your Home?

Removing mold is relatively simple, although it can be hard to detect it. Here is how to remove it.

  • Use a mask to combat mold.
  • Remove moldy equipment, including carpets or furniture
  • Scrub the mold from the walls until it is completely gone. In some cases, you might even need to open up moldy walls to fix it completely.
  • With conditioners and similar devices, replace filters and remove moldy insulation that is found mainly in conditioners. Consult a professional if unsure.
  • Lastly, clean everything up and repair it.

Conclusion

Mold can be a significant problem that you will need to address sooner rather than later. If you want to avoid the problems it can cause, you will need to combat it as quickly as possible.

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