As a busy homeowner, the last thing you’ll want to worry about this year is a surprise mold invasion. This toxic life form can come out of nowhere and pose major risks to your family’s health and wellbeing. It can also relieve you of thousands of dollars.
The worst part is, residential mold isn’t always visible. It has a knack for growing between walls, under floorboards, and in other hard-to-reach places. Most visible mold growth does not represent the true extent of the colony, either. So without professional help, it’s difficult to know exactly how extensive your mold problem is.
This “invisible” aspect of residential mold is one of the most worrisome things for today’s homeowner. How are you supposed to address a mold problem if you don’t know it’s there? Fortunately, there are a number of handy tips to help you recognize invisible mold growth—and what to do if you suspect it.
1. Sharpen your sense of smell
You may be able to detect the smell of mold even if you can’t see it. An infestation growing out of sight is likely to emit a noticeable odor, at least in certain areas of the house. If you’ve been noticing a musty fragrance in your home, mold might be the reason. The bottom line: Your sense of smell is a very good ally when dealing with invisible mold.
2. Check your humidity levels
Mold grows best in conditions of high humidity. If you live in an area where humidity is high during certain seasons, there’s more than one reason to run your cooling system. Modern air conditioners also pull humidity from your indoor air, making it more difficult for mold to grow. A dedicated dehumidifier is also an option.
3. Take note of water damage
Remember when your basement flooded last year? Of course you do—the cleanup was a tough job. But the water itself may not have been the only issue. Water damage events often leave mold problems in their wake. That’s why many homeowners who have sustained water damage will bring in a professional to make sure there’s no mold around.
4. Know your home’s age and construction
Some modern homes are constructed with drywall, insulation, and other building materials that are designed to be more mold-resistant than traditional versions of the same materials. If your home is more than ten years old, however, this probably doesn’t apply to you. Whatever the case, knowing your home’s age and what materials were used to build it can help you stay on top of invisible mold risks.
5. Have a professional inspection
Rather than play a lot of guessing games, many homeowners choose the safest and most direct route: professional mold inspection. As long as you deal with an experience, licensed and fully qualified company, your mold situation will no longer be unknown. The pros have special tools and techniques, including infrared technology, to help them find invisible mold and determine the true extent of the colony. Hopefully the inspection turns up nothing—but if mold is found, you’ll be able to put a dependable, professional strategy in place to protect your property.
Remember—mold isn’t always visible, but there are ways of knowing it’s there, even if you can’t see it.
Good luck in your mold detection efforts! Please leave your comments below!