How do I know if I have a mold issue?
Mold can seem scary to homeowners, but the truth is we all have some level of mold in our homes. It’s when the growth presents a health risk or potential to damage property that we should be concerned about. Mold is in the air all around us. It is a type of fungi that grows outdoors and inside. It likes to grow in dark, humid spaces, so you’re likely to find some in your bathroom or basement.
So how do you know if your mold is an issue? Let’s look at some signs that indicate you should contact a mold removal specialist right away.
Signs you have a mold issue
There are a few ways to determine if you have mold growing in your home and need to have it investigated and removed. Here is how you can tell if you have a mold issue.
1. See the mold growth
Mold can come in different colours and even textures, and if you can see it, you should contact a mold specialist. Unfortunately, mold usually grows quietly in spaces where we can’t see it. When you start to see it on walls and ceilings, there is usually a substantial growth behind that area. You won’t be able to scrub it away using traditional cleaning methods. Mold can be stubborn and difficult to remove. It’s best to call in a professional mold removalist who has the tools and know-how to tackle it.
2. Ongoing illness
If you’ve been feeling run down and like you’re constantly dealing with a cold or flu virus, it could actually be mold behind your walls making you sick. The best method to determine if mold is the cause of your symptoms, take a trip away from home for a few days. If you find your symptoms disappear and reappear when you return home, there could be something lurking behind your walls that is the cause. Contact a mold removal specialist to investigate your home. They’ll know just where to look to see if you have a mold issue.
3. Smell or odour
Mold spores can move around your home, and when they do, you’ll notice a damp or musty smell. Contact a mold specialist if you’ve noticed a smell and you don’t know where it is coming from. They should be able to tell you pretty quickly if there is mold growing in your home.
4. Mold history
Is your home more prone to mold problems? Have you had a mold growth before? Consider the history of your home and whether there has been any recent water damage like flooding, a burst pipe, or snow seeping into your basement. If there has been any additional water in your home, it’s always a good idea to contact a mold removal professional. Even if you don’t think mold has had a chance to grow, it’s better to have it investigated. If you let it go too long, the damage will be more extensive.
5. High moisture in your home
Another risk factor for mold growth in your home is the level of moisture or humidity. This can be an issue if there is a lack of ventilation in some areas of your home. Most problematic is if your bathroom or kitchen doesn’t have a fan or window that allows the moisture to escape. The humidity will simply build and create an environment where mold can grow In this situation.
6. Onset of allergies
If you or a loved one have recently started suffering from allergy-like symptoms, mold could be the underlying factor. These symptoms include:
- Itchy throat
- Runny noise
- Sinus pain or headaches
- Trouble breathing
- Watery, itchy eyes or skin
Mold can cause serious health problems. If you or anyone else in the home have been suffering from these types of symptoms, it’s important to call a mold specialist. They can do an investigation of your home and determine if mold is growing in your home.
Tips for preventing mold growth
Whether or not your home is a high risk for mold growth, there are some steps you can take to reduce the risk of an infestation, including:
Adjust the humidity in your home
If you already know that your home has a higher than normal humidity rate, you’ll need to find ways to counter it. Some ways you can do this would be to install ceiling fans in different rooms of your home, open windows during the day to allow moisture to escape and perform regular maintenance on your HVAC system.
Use mold resistant materials
Whenever you do a renovation or project in your home, use mold-resistant materials to give you an added layer of protection. It can cost a little more than other materials, but it will save you money in the long run.
Use a dehumidifier
Buying a portable dehumidifier allows you to move it around to the rooms that need it most. You may find that moisture builds in your basement during the winter months. Still another part of your home holds excess humidity during spring or summer. Dehumidifiers come in different sizes and shapes, and they can offer extra features such as energy efficiency or less noise. You’ll be able to find one that works for your home and your budget.
One of the best ways to protect your home against mold growth is to have a regular inspection done by a mold removal professional. This is particularly important if you’ve had a history of mold growth in your home. A mold inspection can also help identify parts of your home that put it more at risk for mold growth, such as poor plumbing, foundation drainage issues, holes or cracks in your basement walls, etc.
If you’re concerned or confused about whether mold is an issue for you, contact FIRESTONE Restoration. We take our customer service very seriously and would be happy to help ease your mind.