For the most part, winter is at its end, and it’s time for spring! Spring is such a beautiful season because of the warm weather, the beautiful flowers that sprout up, and the fresh air. While there are so many beautiful things to celebrate about spring, there can be some drawbacks to the season. Here in the Carolinas, we can still experience a lot of rainfall and cool temperatures, and this season particularly makes our homes more susceptible to the growth of mold. So what can you do about it?
Before we go into some tips for dealing with mold, let’s take a step back and revisit what mold really is. Mold is actually pretty natural. It’s a type of fungus that grows in moist conditions. In your home mold can present itself as slimy black spots, fuzzy white patches, or as a slick orange film. Mold isn’t necessarily dangerous but can irritate your skin, eyes, and respiratory system. If you are allergic to mold though, then its presence can really become a problem. Spring can be the worst season for mold growth, especially in areas with lots of rainfall. If there are moisture and humidity, the likelihood that there will also be mold is pretty high.
So how can you tell if you have mold?
SSF: See, Smell or Feel.
See - Mold spores can be visible, but when you have visible mold, it’s usually an indication that you have a big problem that you might need professionals to solve.
Smell - If you notice a musty odor or a damp smell, you might have mold. If there are areas in your home that get flooded often from rainfall (doors, attic, basement, roof, etc), are often exposed to moisture (bathroom, tile), or where appliances leak (behind/under a fridge, washing machine), these might be sources of mold.
Feel - Mold isn’t usually visible but since it is airborne, you might be able to feel it. If you experience flu-like symptoms for a prolonged period, you have difficulty breathing or respiratory issues, or you experience headaches you may have mold.
So I have mold, what should I do?
As previously stated, mold isn’t always dangerous so you shouldn’t start worrying about tearing out the walls quite yet. If it’s a really small area (less than 10 square feet) you could probably treat it on your own. Mold can usually be removed with a solution of chlorine bleach and water. There are other products that kill mold, but remember that if you’re tackling mold on your own, you should ensure the room is well ventilated and that your eyes and hands are protected (by wearing goggles and gloves).
Mold on certain fabrics and in certain quantities are best handled by the professionals, especially since some types of mold are toxic. If you have mold allergies, or a compromised respiratory system (asthma, bronchitis, etc), no matter the size of the mold, you should avoid it and let the professionals handle it. We highly suggest letting the professionals handle your mold project because if mold has gotten to the point where it’s visible or you can smell it, then it might’ve already penetrated your carpet/floors, drywall, or other hard-to-reach areas.
When dealing with mold it's best to let a trained certified expert that understands how to properly remove and remediate it. Ultimately the goal is to remove it, not just cover it up. If mold is not properly removed it can contaminate other areas of your home and lead to a much larger project as well as cause serious health problems. Simply spraying a product or painting over it is not going to eliminate the problem. If you notice mold in your home this spring, we encourage you to reach out to the professionals at H2O Drying Solutions.