A lot of people are disgusted by mold, due to the fact that it’s smelly and not very appealing. But its stench and appearance should be the least of your problems. A much bigger one revolves around its negative impact on your health.
And that’s something that not many people are aware of and unfortunately, do not take it seriously until it’s too late. Keep in mind that mold is a cunning thing that can easily find its way into your household.
For example, poor moisture management can oftentimes cause numerous problems. Therefore, it’s of huge importance to get yourself familiar with it and get your facts straight so you can prevent it from ruining your health.
How Crawl Space Mold Can Negatively Affect Your Health
Top Signs Of Crawl Space Mold
You may not be aware that mold has “infested” your house and you may not be quite sure what an infestation looks like. If that’s the case, then you should take a look at these signs below so you can recognize whether it’s inside or not.
- Black or greenish spots on insulation and walls
- Water stains on baseboards
- Unpleasant smell and stench
- Crawl space wood rot
- Warped wooden floors
- Itchy eyes, runny nose, or cough
Some mold may look black, but that’s not really black mold. So what are you going to do if you notice any of these signs? You should immediately contact a crawl space mold removal company so they can eliminate it from your household. Besides removing it, they will also be able to determine what type of mold you have inside your home. That’s why it’s essential to hire these experts.
Why Should You Worry About Crawlspace Mold?
One of the best places for it to grow is for sure in your crawl space because it doesn’t need sunlight to grow. In fact, the only thing it really needs is moisture. As mentioned above, it can negatively impact your health, causing things like coughing, eye irritation, wheezing, skin irritation, etc.
These conditions aren’t generally too dangerous, however, they can also cause some more serious conditions, such as obstructive lung disease which has been linked to extended exposure to mold or any other damp place.
What makes this whole thing even more shocking is the fact that you do not need to go into your basement in order to be exposed to it. By virtue of the Stack effect, the air from your crawl space can easily find its way into the space you live in and circulate.
Back in 2007, 2010, and 2011, the Institute of Medicine found evidence that showcased how indoor mold and damp spaces are linked to respiratory illnesses. And to make things worse, mold is something that can easily be overlooked because it isn’t residing in the most obvious places.
Furthermore, your crawl space is the most susceptible area of your household to mold growth. This just goes to show that you can find mold in practically every crawl space, but you won’t easily notice it since you do not spend too much time out there.
What Else Needs To Be Said?
Mistakes You Should Avoid If You Want To Prevent It
If you want to keep it out, then there are several steps that you can do to accomplish that. First and foremost, do not make the same mistake as other people make, believing that your crawl space doesn’t negatively affect the quality of indoor air. Besides that, you should avoid doing the following:
- Not repairing all potential sources of moisture inside the crawl space in order to keep it dry.
- Leaky and loose gutters dripping near the house’s foundation coupled with downspouts that are near the foundation.
- Trying to decrease moisture levels by putting ventilation. Killing crawl space mold, but forgetting to remove it to prevent the spread of spores.
- Thinking that a plastic vapor barrier is enough to control moisture. Remember that condensation can still happen on walls, pipes, and ducts. Moreover, the ground must be completely dry and all moisture sources are supposed to be eliminated.
- Blocking soffit vents when installing insulation
- Not cleaning the HVAC ducts on a regular basis to get rid of allergens and mold that colonize this area.
What Kinds Of Mold Should You Be Concerned About?
Bear in mind that a vented or open crawl space can attract various sorts of mold, but on the bright side, not all of them are dangerous. Your biggest concern should certainly be black mold due to the fact that it releases mold spores.
Along with releasing spores, it causes mycotoxins as well. Namely, it triggers allergies and also worsens existing respiratory issues. Keep in mind that even the tiniest exposure to it can be very harmful to your health.
Consequently, you should take things seriously. And then we have white mold which isn’t as invasive as the black one, however, it still has the potential to worsen or cause allergies. It usually resembles mushrooms.
And last, but definitely not least is the yellow mold. Even though this one doesn’t negatively impact your health, it can still ruin the underlying infrastructure of your house, particularly supporting beams and wooden joists.
Why Is Your Crawl Space Susceptible To Mold?
As aforementioned, mold generally thrives in places that are moist and dark. It isn’t too thrilled about the sunlight. The spores can easily enter any space and stay there if there are enough organic materials that will help them survive.
But as mentioned above, moisture is the main cause of mold growth. But the question is, how does it get into the crawl space?
- Penetrating Damp – it is moisture that made its way into the crawl space
- Rising damp – it refers to the moisture that goes upwards from the ground
Now that we provided you with some useful and informative information when it comes to crawling space mold, we honestly hope that you will take the necessary steps to prevent it or get rid of it. Health must always come first!