Mold spores can be found all over the place, both inside and outside. It takes a good environment for them to grow, though. Mold spores need moisture to grow, which is why the most common causes of mold growth in your home all have to do with humidity or water (which is, of course, everywhere in your home). Most mold in your home isn’t dangerous, but toxic mold is one type that could cause health problems. When you know how and why mold grows, you can lessen the chances that it will grow in your home.
This is how it works: Molds and mildew start growing in 24 to 48 hours after they get wet. Darkness and warm temperatures help the mold grow even more quickly. The food source for all kinds of mold is found in a wide range of materials found in your home, from paper to wood to insulation to drywall to carpet and upholstery. This includes black mold. It doesn’t stop until you do something about the mold in your home.
1. Home Roof Leaks
Even if your roof is new, you’re likely to have water leak from the roof. Some of the things that could cause your roof to leak are worn shingles, leaky flashing, and rotten decking. Rain seeps into the roof, where it can get stuck and create moist conditions that are ideal for mold to grow.
Also, water can get into the attic through the roof and soak insulation and the ceiling of the room below. This makes it more likely for mold to grow. People don’t always know if their roof is leaky until water comes through the ceiling. This means that mold can grow unnoticed for a long time, which makes the mold problem even worse. The best way to avoid mold from a leaky roof is to make sure that all of your shingles, flashing, and decking are in good shape, and to check them after a big storm.
2. Leaks Inside Your Home
There are a lot of leaks in your indoor plumbing that can cause water damage and even mold to grow. They can happen anywhere along your plumbing pipes. When pipes leak inside walls or in unfinished areas, like the crawl space, you might not notice. If your home has hidden plumbing leaks, you might not know you have a problem until the mold has grown to a large size.
The most likely thing you can’t do is stop every plumbing leak in your home, but you can do regular checks around your house to look for them before they get worse, which could lead to a lot of mold. Make sure to look for things like wet drywall, pools of water on the floor, and peeling paint in your home.
3. Poor Home Ventilation
When you don’t have enough ventilation in your home, moisture from everyday things like showering and cooking builds up inside. This can make your home smell bad. There is a good chance that mold will grow in a place with stagnant, wet, warm air. To reduce the risk of mold growth and improve indoor air quality, you should open windows and doors to let more air in.
Ventilation is better when you use exhaust fans in your kitchen and bathroom (and yes, this means running it every single time you take a shower or a bath). Because those areas are naturally more humid, running an exhaust fan that vents outside helps remove the extra moisture from the room. Another way to improve ventilation is to open the windows. This lets more moisture and air out, and it also lets more air move through.
4. Mold Growth From Flooding
Whether the water comes from outside or inside, your home can be damaged by floods (like from a hot water heater or a washing machine). Floodwaters can get into everything in your house and cause mold to grow quickly and all over. There is a chance that after a flood, there will be a lot of mold growing because mold grows quickly and floods take time to clean up.
Even if the flood damage isn’t that bad, you might have to tear down drywall, flooring, and other materials anyway because of the water damage. If you don’t clean and dry everything that can be saved properly, it could grow mold.
Getting backflow valves and moving your hot water heater to higher ground can make your home more safe in the event of a flood. This won’t completely stop the damage, but it can stop it from causing a lot of damage.
5. Persistent High Humidity
Normal humidity levels in a home are between 30% and 50%. Mold and mildew can grow all over your house if there is too much moisture in the air. Because of this, why is there so much humidity in the home? Cooking, showers, humidifiers, and plants are just a few of the ways you can get your water. A lot of condensation will likely form on your toilet tanks, as well as on other things that are dry, if your humidity levels are high. ) Are you not sure what your humidity levels are? A hygrometer is a simple tool that tells you how much humidity is in the air. A lot of times, there is a problem with high humidity in every room of the house, but sometimes only a small part.
If your home has a lot of humidity, you can use a dehumidifier in addition to exhaust fans in the kitchen and bathrooms to help dry things out and cut down on the risk of mold.
6. Dampness in the Basement
Everyone who has a basement knows that mold can grow in damp places. Moisture that seeps through concrete walls and a lack of ventilation make it perfect for mold to grow. When you finish a basement that has a lot of moisture problems, the spores have lots of places to grow. This can make the mold problem even worse (making it crucial to check for moisture issues before you start to renovate). There can be moisture behind your drywall, under carpet, and in other places where mold grows over time in finished basements. This can lead to mold.
The best way to fix moisture problems in the basement and stop mold from growing is to fix lawns that aren’t level. This can cause water to flow toward your home’s foundation and make it more likely that water will get into the basement. You should also check to see if the gutters are blocked. This can cause water to run down near the foundation and into your basement, which can damage your home.
7. Too Much Condensation
When warm air meets cold surfaces, you get condensation. It happens a lot on windows, especially when there’s a big difference in temperature between inside and outside. When heated indoor air meets a cold, leaky window in the winter, condensation can form. This can cause mold to grow on the window sills and trim. Cold concrete floors and metal pipes are also places where condensation can build up. If condensation happens a lot, the moisture can cause mold to grow in the places where it happens.
Make sure your windows are insulated and that your exhaust fans are running when you cook or shower to stop condensation from building up.
Insulation helps you keep your home at the right temperature, and poor insulation can lead to mold problems in the long run. Ice dams (also called icicles) can form on the roof deck if there is not enough insulation in the attic. This can happen in cold, snowy places. Ice dams are often the cause of roof leaks and water getting into the attic, which increases the risk of mold in the home. Insulation inside walls can get wet if there are holes in the siding or other parts of the outside. If any insulation is moldy, you’ll need to get rid of it and add the right amount of insulation to keep mold from growing.
9. HVAC System Problems
Having problems with your heating and air-conditioning system can cause a lot of moisture to build up all over your house. The system’s ductwork is dark and often wet, which makes it ideal for mold to grow. Trapped dust and other debris can make the problem even worse, because they can hold moisture and mold spores. It can happen if there is not enough insulation on the ductwork or if there is not enough sealing around the duct joints.
An air conditioning unit that’s too big for your home can also make your home too humid. When it’s working right, a well-sized air conditioner helps to remove humidity from the air. When it’s too big, the AC shuts off and starts up a lot instead of running for longer periods of time. People say this means that the unit doesn’t run long enough to get rid of all the humidity.
If your home has mold because of your HVAC system, get help from a professional to figure out what the best way to fix it is. This could be re-sizing an air conditioning unit for your home’s size, or it could be cleaning your air ducts to remove mold.
10. Wet Clothing Piles
People who put wet clothes in a laundry hamper or pile them on the floor can make them moldy quickly. This is because putting wet clothes in a laundry hamper or on the floor doesn’t allow them to dry. Mold spores can grow in the clothes, and the mold can spread to the floor or any other surface the clothes touch. Mold will not grow on clothes if you let them dry completely before putting them in a hamper or washing them right away.