Mysterious Mold: How to Identify Types of Mold in Your Home
Identifying the type of mold you have in your home is essential to your health and for the safeguarding of your house. Determining the mold type and hazard can help you deem whether mold removal can be tackled as a simple DIY project, or if it requires the help of mold removal experts who are trained to deal with these types of hazards in your home.
Some mold varieties may be easy to clean at home, however, molds that are dangerous to your health are usually more difficult to remove and require the proper equipment and expertise. Let’s take a look at some of the most common types of mold and how to identify them in your home.
Alternaria is a mold that is commonly found in showers or bathtubs and can spread quickly. It has a velvety texture, resembling dark green and brown hairs. Alternaria is classified as an allergenic mold and can cause asthma-type symptoms in humans and animals. Due to where it’s typically found, this type of mold may also indicate a sign of water damage and therefore should be removed quickly.
Acremonium is a mold that turns to powder and can be white, pink, gray, or orange. It is mainly found in small, moist areas of your home such as in humidifiers or drain pans (i.e. washing machines). Although this type of mold is usually small in size, it can be extremely dangerous. Due to its toxicity levels, it has been linked to immune diseases. Unfortunately, this strain has also been found to grow can near black mold. It’s best to call in professional help if you find this type of mold growing in your home.
Fusarium is commonly found and spread on food. It’s usually red, white, or pink in color. This type of mold can be easily cleaned up (i.e. tossing food and sanitizing the area), but if not removed properly, can cause allergic reactions. If spot this mold on food, it should be removed from your home immediately.
Penicillium can be found on decaying vegetation, dried food, spices, fresh fruit, vegetables, compost, or wood. You may also find this particular mold where there is water damage in the home, commonly on mattresses or on wallpaper. It has a velvety texture that is blue-green in color. Penicillium can spread and move quickly through the air in your home.
Aspergillus is a common mold found in homes that includes hundreds of different species. It can form in layers along walls, ceilings, HVAC units, and crawl spaces. It is one of the common indoor molds that can cause health problems from the mycotoxins it gives off. Aspergillus can grow in human tissue, and is therefore dangerous and needs to be removed from homes as soon as possible. To identify this in your home, aspergillus is usually black on top and white or yellow-sh underneath the growth.
Mucor is a rarer form of mold that is found in thick patches and appears white. It is usually found on damp carpets or near AC units. This type of mold is not only
hazardous to your health, but it can also cause damage to your home. Mucor should be handled with care and needs to be removed as soon as possible.
Aureobasidium is a mold that can appear pink, brown, or black as it becomes darker as it ages. It is commonly found on wooden surfaces. This type of mold can lead to infections of the eye, skin, or nails when you touch it. Since it requires such extreme caution to remove, it’s best left to the professionals.
Chaetomium has a cotton-like texture and musty odor that is usually found where there is severe water damage. The color gets darker with time starting out as a white or gray color and ending in black. Like aureobasidium, this is mold that should not be touched as it can cause serious infections to the skin, nails, and eyes.
Trichoderma is a white mold with furry green patches and is mainly found in wet areas where condensation tends to build up (think HVAC filters!). Although mostly non-pathogenic, some subspecies of this type of mold produce mycotoxins that could lead to respiratory issues. Because of this, it’s best to have a professional assess the damage.
Stachybotrys is the most dangerous type of mold, also known as the dreaded ‘black mold.’ Black mold is usually found in areas that have been damp for extended periods of time. This mold is slimy and either a very dark green or black in color and has been linked to very serious health issues. You should never attempt to remove this mold, as it should only be removed by professionals.
When in doubt, call a mold removal expert!
Although several of the molds mentioned can be removed by the homeowner reasonably safely, most of these molds will need the help of a professional for removal. Contact Dry Kings today to help you identify, assess and remove any dangerous mold from your home. This will give you the peace of mind that your home and family are safe from hazardous and harmful mold.