The number one fact we must remember is that toxic mold grows from moisture. Before starting off with any form of mold remediation, it is crucially important to figure out the common places for moisture in your home. How do you start searching for at home? There is a quick checklist that we have jotted down in order to help our readers to tackle this problem. Every home suffers from damp and moisture places. Dealing with them in a timely manner should be on your top priority.
The ideal environment for mold to grow is where there are heat and humidity. These ideal conditions are prime for our Kansas City metro area, especially at the height of our summers. Toxic mold can grow in all kinds of locations and types of surfaces.
Have you ever considered how the problem of dampness occurs in a home? There are three main reasons behind it, including;
- Moisture cannot escape from the home
- Water is getting inside the home in the form of seepage
- Moist storage inside the wall cracks – unable to escape and thus cause moisture/mold
Point to be noted: Mold usually feeds on moisture or elements that contain bacteria, such as; starch, sugar content in gypsum board, wooden boards and cupboards along with wallpaper glues, etc. However, there is also a possibility that mold can appear and grow on carpets, clothes, and areas with excessive dust.
There are few categories of paints that hold the tendency for molds to grow on them. Similarly, when these paints are used on basement walls or in places with high humidity it can become a potential host for molds. Toxic mold grows behind paint when there is prolonged exposure to humidity and lack of proper ventilation. Thick, multiple layers of paint or painted wallpaper is the most predominant cause of mold behind wall paint. In our industry, we see many apartments, rental properties and flipped properties that have painted over mold. Within a few short months, the mold starts seeping through with a vengeance. This is why we recommend a professional mold inspection with every real estate transaction.
Does your bathroom smell dusty, damp or musty? If so, make sure to inspect the walls behind your bathroom mirrors and cabinets. All too common we find toxic mold grows rapidly in these locations due to trapped moisture. Either the bathroom has not been properly ventilated or installed ventilation utilized during and after showers to remove the humidity in the room. In addition, bathrooms are prone to plumbing leaks, overflows, and splashes all of which can cause mold damage over time.
Another common area to look for molds is on your carpet’s tack strips. We see moldy tack strips a lot! Moldy tack strips give you a clear indication of where water damage has been occurring. Behind baseboards is the #1 area we find mold. Often we see homeowners and businesses remove visible water after a plumbing or foundation leak, with little to no regard to the water that is trapped behind baseboards and drywall. All too common, we are called in months after a water damage event has occurred only to pull back baseboard and find tons of mold growing behind it and the drywall it’s attached to.
It is common for dust to accumulate in these places, and if the moisture and condensation are added during the rainy season, you have all the conditions for mold growth. Remember to clean the dust and the other particles that accumulate, and open the windows to let the air circulate. Also, we see windows that are improperly insulated or caulked that have significant air gaps that allow humidity and moisture from outside elements to penetrate.
Clothes dryers that have been improperly vented or the vent has been accidentally knocked off, cause a big problem with moisture and mold developing behind them. The moist condition of the air and the lint all produce a perfect breeding ground for mold if not properly exhausted to the exterior of the property. Under refrigerations is another common place we find mold. Your refrigerator has a drip tray designed to catch condensation from the appliance, where water and food particles can get collected. If not properly cleaned on an annual basis this creates an opportunity for the mold to grow. Hands down our number one appliance that creates mold is dishwashers. All too common we see behind and under dishwashers a significant amount of mold and water damage, with the number one cause being slow leaks in the water line connected to the dishwasher!
Remember, mold does not always grow in the most obvious places. If you are concerned that you may have a mold problem, simply call and speak with one of our mold professionals about setting up a free no-obligation estimate at 816-287-4107.