April 27th, 2020

The Ultimate Homeowners’ Guide: How to tell if I have Mold

By Nic Cornwell - Owner & Founder

Most of us know what mold looks like…visually. Unfortunately, as many of our clients have discovered, there’s more to mold than meets the eye—literally. Just because you can’t see the telltale fungi that grow from mold—which are known as mycotoxins—it doesn’t mean they’re not there.

Mold can be lurking under the surface: under your carpet, within your walls, and in your basement and attic space.

In this article, we’re going to answer one of the most commonly asked homeowner questions: how to tell if I have mold?

The answer is much more simple than you might expect, so let’s get started.

The Ultimate Homeowners’ Guide: How to tell if I have mold.

It can be easy to spot mold on cheese or bread in our kitchen, but sometimes it’s a little more difficult around other areas of the home.

Here are 2 simple things to look at when you suspect you may have mold.

Your home

This one may be a no-brainer, but bear with us. Understanding your home’s history, and it’s present, can help you figure out the mold risk quickly.

History

Does your home and its surrounding area have a history of flooding, humidity, leaking, or water damage? All these things, if not treated properly early on, can lead to moisture issues later—making your home an ideal breeding ground for mold.

Present

Fast-forwarding to the present, be sure to check your home for leaky plumbing and rusted pipes. Rusted pipes stem from leaks, and leaky plumbing can be responsible for high moisture levels in your bathroom, kitchen, basement, and attic.

Is your home notorious for condensation on the windows or walls? This can seem like a minor inconvenience, but constant damp on and around your windows provides mold with everything it needs to thrive.

Finally, pay attention to any damp smells or musty odors inside your house. Often, we will find visible signs of mold—the fungus itself—long after noticing a strange smell in a specific area.

Your—and your family’s—health

The other part of the mold equation is the health of the people who live there. If you suddenly suffer from ongoing cold symptoms, or have difficulty breathing, the damp in your home could be the culprit.
These symptoms may include:

  • Runny nose
  • Blocked nose
  • Chesty coughs
  • Sore throats
  • Itchy or watery eyes
  • Headache
  • Shortness of breath

It can be easy to ignore these symptoms, but if you are experiencing them in conjunction with a suspected damp problem, it’s important not to discount mold as a potential suspect. One of the most rewarding parts of our job is doing mold remediation work, and hearing later that a client’s recurring cold has disappeared since the work was completed.

Conclusion

If your home suffers from areas of moisture, it is at risk of mold growth. Because mold needs moisture to thrive, the best thing you can do for your home—as an investment and a safe haven for your loved ones—is to ensure it is clean and dry.

Ready to get your home safe and dry? Call Austin’s #1 water restoration experts for a total mold removal service.

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