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WWhat Are The First Signs Of Black Mold In Your Home?
At the first signs of black mold in your home, you are likely to feel stress, anxiety, and concern for those who live and work in the space.
But how do you know if there is mold in your home? Your first indication that there is a mold issue in your home is when you begin to see or smell it.
Black mold tends to have a strong, musty smell, and of course, it displays a trademark black color.
Mold must have a water source for growth, so any damp, humid areas of the home are often susceptible and places to search for large mold infestations.
The real issue is that mold can hide in dark and small places. There are very few materials in your home that can’t hide some mold growth after water exposure.
The areas that are especially susceptible to mold infestation are carpets, wood doors, baseboards, drywall, and wallpaper.
In fact, any area that is water permeable can allow the spread of a mold colony. This is why it is recommended that you contact professional mold mitigation and restoration experts like those at HRS in the Phoenix and Denver areas.
A mold removal professional can identify the cause and clean the mold to ensure the health and safety of your loved ones.
What Is Black Mold?
Black mold is the common name for a certain type of mold called “Stachybotrys” that are thought to be particularly harmful to a person’s health.
It is typically a greenish-black color with a flat or fuzzy texture. It can grow on material with a high cellulose content, such as fiberboard, gypsum board, and paper.
Like all molds, black mold growth occurs when there is moisture present.
What Causes Black Mold?
Like all types of mold, black mold grows when there is a water intrusion in a space and a host material such as wood or paper. It must also be in a humid and dark space to thrive.
The key to its growth is moisture, and as long as it continues to exist, mold continues to grow and spread.
Is Black Mold Dangerous Or Toxic?
Though black mold has a reputation for being toxic, it has not been shown to be any more dangerous than other types of molds according to reports from the CDC and others.
Mold in general can be dangerous to individuals who have been exposed to it and who are sensitive to its spores.
The extent of health-related issues can vary depending on the sensitivity of the individual, the size of the mold infestation, and the time spent inhaling the spores.
Symptoms Of Black Mold Exposure
There are several symptoms that people can suffer after being exposed to a mold infestation. They vary in degree as conditions of the exposure change.
For many people, exposure to black mold (or other types of fungus) can result in cold or asthma-like symptoms such as coughing, wheezing, and headaches.
In other cases where the exposure is more severe or the individual is more sensitive, illnesses can be long-term and more devastating.
These symptoms can include psychiatric issues, brain damage, joint pain, and loss of mobility in some people.
Early Signs Of Black Mold In Your Home
Identifying mold growth typically happens after a water breach. This may be a leak, a flood, or even simply a condensation that is allowed to remain.
As water is a necessary ingredient for mold growth, discovering this type of breach is an indication that you may also find mold thriving in your home.
Some of the signs of black mold in your house may be a musty smell, dark-colored tile grout, and warped drywall.
In many cases, homeowners are able to easily identify the obvious places where mold has spread. The issue comes in the more hidden spaces that require professional assistance to identify and properly dry, disinfect, and restore.
Your Air Conditioning Or Heating Unit Smells Weird
One sign of a potential mold growth issue is when a musty smell begins. You might identify this smell in your air conditioner, especially if the condenser has begun to leak and moisture allows mold to thrive.
The Grout Between Your Shower Tiles Is Dark
A common place to see mold beginning to grow is on the grout between the tiles on your bath or kitchen. Though in some cases this can be easily remedied by a homeowner, in others it can be a sign of an underlying mold spread happening behind tiling.
Your Wallpaper Is Peeling
Moist, peeling wallpaper is an ideal location for mold to thrive. Like all types of mold, black mold spreads when it is able to attach to a host like paper or wallboard, and is able to remain moist.
A plus for the mold colony is that the peeling paper provides ample cover for it to avoid the drying effects of sunlight.
Drywall is a porous material made of paper and wood products. Because these materials can hold moisture so well, they’re perfect hosts for mold colonies.
As water is absorbed, the drywall will expand and warp, allowing mold to not only grow on the surface of the boards but also inside.
In many cases, wallboard must be replaced after a water event as its ability to absorb can limit the effectiveness of drying techniques.
You Feel Like You Have A Cold That Won’t Go Away
Commonly, those who are exposed to mold in a home experience some level of health-related symptoms. For most these are similar to those felt with the common cold. Coughs, wheezing and headaches are typical.
Dark Colored Spots On Your Walls
A key indication of mold growth is discovering discoloration on your walls. In many cases, this change of color first comes when the walls are wet. However, as mold grows, the size of the colony may lead to it being seen as a color change on walls. In either case, it is best to investigate the cause of the discoloration quickly.
Worsening Asthma Symptoms
It is common for those who are exposed to mold to feel some degree of health issues. For those who suffer from chronic issues such as asthma, the effects of exposure can be even more severe.
For some suffering from asthma, their symptoms may be exacerbated causing serious, sometimes dangerous illnesses.
You Feel Itchy
Exposure to mold of any kind, including black mold, can lead to a range of symptoms, including itchy eyes and skin. Like seasonal allergies, mold spores that are inhaled can irritate the nasal passages of those breathing them in as a result of exposure. This irritation can lead to an itchy feeling as your body works to fight off the invading spores.
Often the first sign that there may be mold growing is the distinct musty smell emitted by the growing mold colony.
This earthy, wet scent can also be a sign that there has been a water breach. It is best to complete a mold inspection using a professional that is certified in this area to ensure that you can not only stop water from intruding but end mold growth.
Like mold, rust requires moisture to form. Rust forms on metallic surfaces and causes corrosion. Mold on other hand easily grows in areas such as the basement or bathrooms. Professional mold inspectors are able to complete an analysis to tell you if the suspected rust is actually a red form of mold.
What To Do If You Find Black Mold
Finding black mold, or any type of mold, in your home is stressful to be certain. It causes a homeowner immediate concern about the health and safety of those who live in the affected space.
Alleviating this stress is one of the best reasons to contact professional mold removal service experts like those at HRS as soon as the discovery is made.
Our team of trained and certified technicians can perform a mold inspection, stop the water from entering your home, and begin the process of returning it to its pre-damaged state quickly.
Why Choose HRS Disaster Restoration?
HRS Disaster Restoration employs the best technicians in the industry. Our trained and certified team is able to assist you, the homeowner, in bringing your home back to its pre-damaged condition in the quickest and safest fashion.
Using the latest technology, we are able to provide water and mold damage restoration in Phoenix and Denver. Our technicians stop water from coming in and identify hidden mold colonies, limiting the chance that mold would return to your home.
Protecting the health and safety of your loved ones is our highest priority and our team is ready to help as soon as you suspect mold is growing in your home.
Contact HRS Disaster Restoration Today!
It is no secret that mold and water can do great damage to a home. To avoid the worst of results after an emergency like these, reach out to our certified team to help bring your home back to life.
Specializing in disasters like mold, water, fire, and trauma – we have a combined two decades of experience in helping homeowners just like you.
IICRC stands for the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification. Formed nearly 40 years ago, it is a non-profit organization that establishes globally recognized standards for the cleaning and restoration industry, as well as providing certifications, journeyman and master designation, and education.
By choosing a firm with IICRC certified team members, you are assured the cleaning professionals have undergone rigorous training and will handle your disaster restoration with the highest standard of care.
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