Your home should be your sanctuary, but this can be difficult if you have a mold problem. One in five people is allergic to the mold that they find growing in their home.
Molds grow in dark, damp places, such as basements, closets, and bathrooms. They spread through air vents, windows, and doors and can cause various health problems.
Knowing the signs of mold is the first step toward fixing your mold problems. Here are the top fifteen indications your home needs basement mold removal so you can keep your family healthy.
Mold and Homes
Mold is a type of fungus that grows in the right conditions. There are countless types of mold, and most aren’t harmful to humans.
When mold spores find a damp place to live, they can quickly reproduce and root into the wet area. When this happens, the mold needs removal, or it can cause home and health issues.
Basements are ideal for multiplying mold because of their dark, damp qualities. The constant temperature of a basement makes it the perfect place for mold to breed.
1. Musty Air
One of the first signs that you have a mold problem is the smell in your basement. Mold can take on a very earthy or musty smell. Many people describe the scent as smelling like wet wood.
Mold can often start inside of a wall where you can’t see it. Don’t ignore the musty smell as it can be the first indication something is wrong.
2. You Can See Mold
Basements aren’t known for being brightly lit. If you are on the lookout for mold, grab a work light and shine it over every nook and cranny.
Mold takes on many different forms. Look for tiny black speckles or any area that looks burned. Sometimes mold will make your basement look unusually dirty.
3. Find Areas Known to Have Mold
Certain places in your basement will be more prone to mold growth than others. If you think you have a mold problem, start by checking near any pipes. Drainage lines and sewer pipes should be the first place you check.
Check out the dryer vents if you have a laundry room in the basement. Check for leaks around any sump pumps too.
4. Peeling Paint
The paint on your walls can be very revealing when identifying a basement mold issue. If you see bubbling or peeling paint, you have moisture in your wall. That dampness equals the perfect place for mold to grow.
5. Black Spots
If you see black spots in your basement, it’s time to call the professionals. You’ll notice that black mold spores are small and condensed. Black mold can cause many health problems, making it important to remedy it quickly.
6. Your Basement Is Damp
Mold loves a damp environment, which is the condition of most basements. Many times, small cracks in a foundation bring water into a basement. This water creates the conditions that mold loves.
Condensation is another feature that most basements have. The cooler temperatures in a basement cause water droplets to form. These droplets build up on walls, pipes, and windows and encourage mold to grow.
8. Your Allergies Are Ticking Up
Have you noticed that your eyes are itch and red all the time? If you feel like your allergies won’t go away, it could be because of a mold problem. Mold can also cause sneezing, itching, and tightness of the chest.
9. Water Leaks
A water leak creates a prime environment for mold to thrive. Leaks can be tricky because they can sometimes happen inside a wall or under a floor. If you find any water damage in your home, you need to get it fixed to stop mold from overtaking the area.
If you have had a recent leak, a restoration company can help you get the area dry again. It’s worth it to call a service like this to keep your home from getting a future mold problem.
10. Recent Flooding
Leaks aren’t the only water issues that can cause mold. Any recent flooding event can cause flood damage that encourages mold to form also.
Standing water of any kind promotes mold growth. Even a small amount of standing water can grow mold. Be vigilant about cleaning any spills or small leaks to keep mold from forming.
11. Ventilation Issues
Poor ventilation keeps moisture from evaporating in a room. Many basements fall into this category, which keeps them damp and susceptible to mold growth.
12. You Have Other Health Issues
Mold can cause serious health issues if it is not taken care of. Some of the scarier symptoms involve the brain. If you find you can’t concentrate, remember things, or are dizzy, you could blame mold.
If you find yourself with any of these symptoms, take note of when they are happening. If they occur when you are home, it could be a severe mold problem.
13. Mold Test With Bleach
Do you find yourself thinking that you have a mold issue in your basement? If so, you can test a spot using bleach.
In a glass container, mix one-part bleach with ten parts water. Dip a cotton swab into the bleach mixture and rub it over the area you think has the mold on it. If the spot does have mold, it will change to a lighter color.
14. Mold Test With a Screwdriver
Mold can live in the walls, so you must check these areas thoroughly. If you think you have mold in your basement, grab a screwdriver and push it into your drywall. If it goes in without much effort, you have a mold problem.
15. Mold Testing With Professionals
For an in-depth mold search, call the professionals in. They can use cameras to look around inside a wall to see if mold exists. Professionals can also help with mold removal if they find a problem in your basement.
How to Treat Basement Mold
When you find mold in your basement, it’s essential to act fast. If you have a small problem, you can take several steps to mitigate the issue.
Prepare Your Area
First, make sure to keep air moving in the area with mold. A box fan is a great tool to use during this step.
Grab plastic and tape around the area with mold in it. Turn off any heating, ventilation, or air conditioning systems. This step will keep mold from traveling to other areas of your home.
Dry the Area
The area with the suspected mold is most likely damp or wet. Use a vacuum made for water removal to suck up as much water as possible.
Turn your dehumidifier up and add a heater to help dry the space out. Keep a fan going in your basement until the area shows no signs of dampness.
Use Mold Remover
Grab a mold remover and start spraying the area. Use a sponge and work it into the spot to fully saturate it.
Clean the Mold
Let the mold remover dry. The mold will now be dead, but the discoloration won’t go away.
You can paint over the discoloration using latex paint. Another option is to clean the mold discoloration. Use hot water, dish soap, and a scrub brush to lift the discoloration off of the floor.
Your final step is to prevent mold from growing in the area again. Add a dehumidifier to your basement to keep the site dry. Make sure any pipes or vents have a solid seal.
Prevent mold by taking a step outside. Upgrade your gutters and make sure they aren’t responsible for basement water. Make it a habit to check your basement for any leaks or signs of moisture.
Hire a Professional
Some mold issues are too extensive to fix by yourself. In these cases, the best way to get your basement back to normal is to hire a mold remediation Denver professional. A professional team can remove the mold in your basement altogether.
Know When It’s Time for Basement Mold Removal by Identifying These Signs
Mold spores are always circulating in the air but aren’t a problem until they have a place to land and grow. The basement of your home is the perfect mold environment, so you have to be extra watchful for signs of mold.
Catching mold early is the key to limiting the damage it can do. When in doubt, call in a professional for your basement mold removal to keep mold from becoming an even bigger problem.
Once you’ve remedied the mold in your basement, you’ll want to move on to other house projects. Check out our home blogs for inspiration today!