Spy with your little eye: how to find mould in your home

December 23, 2014

Home owners should be aware of potential mould growing in their homes and wreaking havoc. Here are some helpful tips of where to look and what to do if you find mould.

Spy with your little eye: how to find mould in your home

Mould a hidden but deadly home defect that can cause mould allergies with symptoms ranging from sinus congestion to hair loss. A home inspection for mold infestations should be undertaken by all homeowners. Here are some helpful tips of where to look and what to do if you find mold.

What is mould?

Mould is a fungus that grows from the absorption of oxygen and carbon from organic materials. However, mould grows inside of the home as well. Basically, mould can develop in any condition as long as there is moisture. In homes, its build-up is prevalent in areas such as walls, ceiling, windows, floor, furniture, insulation, air ducts clothes and the basement. In these situations, it develops from high moisture content caused by water leaks or organic debris becoming a food source.

Where there is moisture there is mould

Some methods for detecting mould require homeowners to look for areas in the home that are high in moisture. For moisture to build up, there has to be humidity. Indoor humidity fluctuates a lot more than outdoor. Therefore, places like under the sink or in the basement are key areas that are high in moisture.

Places to check for it

The relationship between mould and moisture is key to looking for areas where there is mould damage. Therefore, areas in the home that have been recently water damaged is a good place to start. A water damaged area that isn’t cleaned properly will typically have a mould problem when left for a long period of time. Also, look for things like damaged pipes to see if there is any mould build-up around it.

Another good spot to check are ceilings and wall cavities. Spaces above the ceiling are hotspots for mould build-up. They are closed off areas that are susceptible to moisture build-up because piping behind walls tend to drip and leak.

Most homes have cooling and heating systems that cause fluctuations in moisture and humidity. Air ducts are places where you might likely find mould. The combination of cool and hot air condenses moisture on the cooling coils and builds up on the drain pans where it can form.

What to do about it?

When you detect mould, remove it immediately by simply cleaning the affected area. However, this doesn’t ensure its permanent removal. You must check the area every few days to make sure your clean-up was successful. If it's still present, you must clean it more thoroughly. Also, there is the option to hire a professional to do a home evaluation if the problem is very severe.

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