Mold, Moisture, Your Home and Health
Mold can be found almost anywhere on any surface. All it requires is moisture. Mold is part of the natural process of breaking down dead organic matter such as fallen leaves so it is very helpful in the outdoors. When it comes inside our homes however, there is a problem. Molds take hold and spread by tiny spores that they put off into the air. That air travels both outdoors and indoors and when it lands on a wet surface it can grow.
Molds can cause many health problems for individuals when they encounter it. They produce allergens, irritants, and sometimes toxins. Exposure to mold either through inhalation or if it touches the skin can cause irritation and reactions in the nose, throat, eyes, and skin. Mold allergies are common and symptoms of an allergic reaction can be sudden or delayed. Asthma attacks can also be triggered in those that have asthma and are also allergic to mold.
In order to keep molds out of your home, you need to combat moisture. Moisture in the home can come from many different sources but can be remediated. These sources can include water damage from a burst pipe or flooding, leaks from the roof or plumbing, spills that are not dried, condensation from improper or failing insulation or venting, poor grading that allows rain water to pool at or enter the foundation, or high humidity inside the home. If you find mold inside your home it is important to deal with it immediately but properly.
In some cases it is possible to deal with the mold on your own, for instance if it is out in the open and less than about 10 square feet. Insure you protect yourself from contact with mold spores with rubber gloves, non vented googles, and an N95 respirator. If the affected area is larger or you suspect there is hidden mold inside the walls or under wallpaper it is important to have the entire area inspected by a certified professional and bring in a professional to clean. The most important step in cleaning up mold is ensuring that the source of moisture is located and fixed.
If you are worried about mold or moisture in your home contact Active Home Inspection Services today.
If you would like to know more about mold and moisture or find tips for dealing with moisture in your home, more information can be found at InterNACHI.