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Home mold presents serious health hazards to you and your family. However, it is not hard to prevent mold once you know what exactly is mold, how to identify it, and what are the techniques you can utilize to prevent it.

So What is Mold?

Mold is a type of fungus that grows from spores and is essential for the breakdown of dead plant and animal matter. Mold spores are usually inactive, but they will become active if humidity levels exceeds70% or if the temperature goes above 65 degrees. Mold exists everywhere in the environment, it may be found indoors and outdoors. Mold is often found in damp or wet areas, this why it is so common in places such as the basement and bathroom and outdoor in grass and hay. People come in touch with mold every day. Mold is what causes food to spoil, wood to rot, and paper to smell musty.

How to Identify Mold?

Mold is the black growth you often see on wet window sills. If you store paper or fabrics in a damp place you might get the musty smell that is caused by the action of molds. Active mold growth is slimy and is usually green, black, orange or purple. When the inactive mold is dry and looks like a powder. It is usually white when dry. In its early phases, molds may look like a web while when in full bloom it looks like a miniature bush. Even when molds are unseen, wet spots or dampness can indicate a problem and molds will eventually follow. If you suspect that a spot is moldy, you can perform a simple test to find out if the spot is really mold. Touch the suspected spot with a small drop of bleach and see if the stain loses its color or disappears. If it does, it may be mold. If there is no change, it is probably not mold. Another good way to tell if mold is present is an odor. Mold usually has a musty smell that can indicate the presence of molds even if they are invisible.

Defining Moldy Areas

There are 3 common terms used to define a moldy area:

Extensive: A mold area is defined extensively if there is a single area of mold that is larger than 32square feet. If there are less than three patches of mold, each smaller than 10 square feet, is considered a “small” area mold. The definition of moderate area is given if there are more than three patches but each patch is smaller than 10 square feet or if there is on the patch, larger than 10 square feet but smaller than 32 square feet

 

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