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Getting Rid of Mold in the Air

Getting Rid of Mold in the Air

May 27th 2024

There are many things that can pollute the air you breathe. Outdoors, you are exposed to pollutants from vehicles, manufacturing plants, smokers, viruses and bacteria that could come from your environment. But what about indoors?

You might think indoor air is not affected by chemicals and other pollutants, but there are other things that can lower the quality of your indoor air, and one of them is mold. Mold is a common indoor air pollutant, as it can grow almost anywhere and on almost any surface given the right conditions.. This means that the places where we live and the facilities where we work can be contaminated.

Mold poses potential health hazards to humans, as mold spores  can float in the air and affect our lungs, nasal cavities, eyes, and skin. Some molds also produce toxic byproducts called mycotoxins that can cause whole-body symptoms and serious illness with acute or prolonged exposure. And when molds  grow into colonies, they can flourish and pose even more serious threats to the human body.

Improving Indoor Air is Crucial

One way to improve the quality of your indoor air is to remove such pollutants. But how do you know if your indoor air has elevated levels of mold spores? There are several ways to check this before doing any official mold testing..

Check the following first for the possible presence of mold spores in your indoor air:

Do a visual inspection.

The first step is to conduct a visual inspection of your home. Look in areas that are damp, warm, humid, and not in direct sunlight. Often these include areas such as behind  the refrigerator, around the kitchen, under  sinks, behind the toilet and around the bathtub and shower, inside ventilation ducts, and behind a drywall or wallboard.

If you find black or green spots that are moving vertically, these are most likely mold colonies that have started growing. If  paint has signs of bubbling, this is another indication of water damage and possible mold growth.

Check your HVAC system.

If your HVAC system has not been cleaned or maintained for a long time, check the filters to see if there is a greenish gray dust. Often this could be mold spores that have mixed with the dust particles in your system.

It is advisable to get your system cleaned by a certified HVAC professional, have the filters changed, and create a regular maintenance schedule to prevent mold spores from getting into the HVAC filters. Regular maintenance can also prevent problems like excess moisture buildup inside the plenum and ductwork that could lead to mold growth in the future.

Check for plumbing leaks in your home.

When there are leaks in your house, it can create an environment where mold spores can thrive. Often these could be in areas such as the basement and wherever plumbing or pipes are located inside the house.

Look for dark spots and signs of water damage in the ceilings and walls, as these are all indications of possible leaks and mold growth.

Get a mold testing kit.

If there are no indications of all the previous signs stated above, get a mold testing kit or an air testing sensor. These kits usually include petri dishes, lift tapes, or special swabs. They can be used if you smell mustiness and feel that the air is heavy or dusty, but can see no visible signs of mold growth or water damage.

Follow the instructions that come with your test kit for best results, and if the test comes out positive, you can send the samples to the lab to have them tested to find out what kind of mold you have in your home. This information could then help you understand how to improve your indoor air quality by fixing the issue and remediating the mold.

What to Do When You Are Positive

If all the signs are indicative of a  mold problem in your home, you need to do the following to remove not only the colonies but also the mold spores that are in your indoor air:

Locate the water source

Mold cannot grow without a water source. You must find the moisture problem and fix it so that all other efforts will work long term to keep the mold away. A water source is not always a leak, though. You could have too much indoor humidity or condensation within walls. You could also have moisture and drainage problems under the home in a crawlspace that lead to elevated mold levels in the living space above it. The point is to find the issue and to fix it.

Remove any moldy or water-damaged building materials

Any building materials with water damage or with visible mold growth should be removed and replaced, if possible.

Clean the area with mold solution.

Use a mold solution to clean out the mold in the area where you find colonies. Wear goggles and gloves when doing so, to protect your eyes and skin. Spray the area with the solution, follow the bottle directions for dwell time and proper cleaning.

Improve the air circulation in your home.

Open your windows and doors to make the air move in your home. Use a fan to allow air to move around, so mold spores can move out into the open windows and doors. If you have ventilation ducts, make sure to clean them properly and the system cleaned if it is suspected that mold has gotten into it.

Use a mold fogger or mold spray.

If you have cleaned your HVAC system and improved the air circulation in your home, the best way to ensure that any mold spores are reduced or removed is to use a mold fogger or mold spray.

The mold fogger makes a mist that allows the solution to stick to dust particles that have mold spores. They can then reduce the likelihood of the spores from developing into colonies, and make it easier for you to have cleaner and healthier indoor air.

Make the Air You Breathe Healthier

So the next time you smell mold in the air or suspect the presence of mold colonies in your home, don’t panic! Micro Balance Health Products has mold testing kits, mold solutions, and even mold foggers to help you get your home and air quality back in check. We have the products that can reduce the presence of mold in your home, and improve the quality of your indoor air too!