Menu Close

How Long Does Mold Take to Grow From Water Damage?

Water damage such as leakages can always occur. At times, calamities and hurricanes such as flooding are possible in places around the coastal lines. When these do happen, they leave behind a trail of water, which if not addressed early enough, may cause massive structural damage. In the same way, mold growth will be imminent and this is very risky for your health. In the indoors, mold is likely to start growing within 24 and 48 hours since this area is poorly ventilated, compared to the outdoors. Even so, mold growth in the same areas will be at different rates depending on the type of surface it is growing. However, mold spores should be visible within the first 48hours. This article looks at the amount of time it takes for mold to grow from water damage on different surfaces.

  • Hidden Surfaces

After water damage has occurred, for example, flooding, and the water has not been dried off immediately, it will find its way into the hidden surfaces. Since these areas are hard to reach and there is warmth all over, mold growth will start almost immediately. For the mold spores to start showing, they must be growing on softer surfaces like carpets and drywall. If this happens, spores should be visible within 24 hours. Such hidden areas could be behind the drywall, corners below the bathroom and kitchen sinks, underfloor and behind and below a toilet seat that rests on the bathroom floor.

  • Softer Surfaces

Mold growth will take place at a higher rate on softer surfaces like drywall, wood, and fabrics. This is because mold is a living microorganism and it finds better support base on softer surfaces than on hard ones. The ripple effect is that such soft surfaces like wood and drywall will start rotting if the water is not dried early enough. The worst-case scenario is that this might cause massive structural damage after the mold has been in place for a few months.

  • Rough Surfaces 

Mold takes longer to grow on hard surfaces like concrete and tile grout. After there has been water damage in the house, mold spores will start manifesting on hard surfaces after 2-3 weeks. Mold growing in such areas is even more risky since remediation will be harder than other surfaces. To avoid mold growth in such areas after water damage, dry off all the water and ventilate effectively, otherwise, you will spend a fortune to remediate such areas.

  • Attic 

When water damage has happened and the water is not dried completely, it will be heated by the warmth in the house and because hot air rises, it will find its way into the attic, where there are even higher temperatures, due to proximity to the roof. The situation worsens if the insulation in the attic is faulty. Mold will start growing on the ceiling or the rafters almost immediately, within 24 hours after the damage. Since the attic is usually the least visited areas in the house, mold growth may reach extreme levels until it is too late and you have to replace the whole structure.

  • Wet and Warm Areas

These areas are the most likely to be affected by mold growth after water damage because warmth and humidity are perfect conditions for mold to thrive. Such areas include the bathroom and inside kitchen lower cabinetry. With this mind, consider drying such areas with a vacuum cleaner that is HEPA enabled since this will ventilate these areas to the optimum best.

  • Open Areas

Even in the event of water damage and all the water has not been dried off the surface, open areas such as the kitchen and living room will be the last place for mold spores to manifest. Because they are well aerated and ventilated, chances of warmth building up are minimal. Since mold thrives in humid and warm conditions, signs for mold growth will take around 1 month to manifest. However, in rare cases, mold spores can be present if they are transferred from other areas of the house.

During the aftermath of water damage is the most opportune time for mold growth because of the presence of high levels of moisture. Therefore, you should act quickly to dry all the water completely. However, this may not be enough, as you must install a good functioning air purifier, conditioner, and ventilator. You should even keep your windows open for some time after drying the water. If this does not work, then it is time to call in professional cleaning services and be sure to vet the best by checking their customer reviews and ratings.

Related Posts