Can Mold Cause Health Problems
Molds are usually not a problem indoors, unless mold spores land on a wet or damp spot and begin growing. Molds have the potential to cause health problems. Molds produce allergens , irritants, and in some cases, potentially toxic substances . Inhaling or touching mold or mold spores may cause allergic reactions in sensitive individuals. Allergic responses include hay fever-type symptoms, such as sneezing, runny nose, red eyes, and skin rash .
Allergic reactions to mold are common. They can be immediate or delayed. Molds can also cause asthma attacks in people with asthma who are allergic to mold. In addition, mold exposure can irritate the eyes, skin, nose, throat, and lungs of both mold-allergic and non-allergic people. Symptoms other than the allergic and irritant types are not commonly reported as a result of inhaling mold. Research on mold and health effects is ongoing.
This provides a brief overview it does not describe all potential health effects related to mold exposure. For more detailed information consult a health professional. You may also wish to consult your state or local health department.
How To Get Rid Of Mold In The Attic
Attics are an important part of our home. They serve as a storage area for many people but also as protection for the lower part of the house from the outdoor elements. Many homeowners dont go in their attic, let alone survey it to check for anything out of the ordinary.
Imagine you are up there and smell mildewchecking it out, you find mold! Mold! How can that be? Well, it is a very humid area and often goes undetected, as it is a dark space that homeowners will put stuff in storage but not walk around to check it out.
How do you get rid of mold in the attic? Use vinegar and water, alcohol, and find the source of the mold such as a roof leak. You can try to do it yourself or hire a professional. Keep in mind the attic is a very dangerous place to be and exercise caution.
Lets take a look at how the mold grows in the attic, signs of mold, how to do it yourself , and when to call in a professional.
Remove Wet Or Moist Insulation
Due to the leak, humidity, or condensation after wintertime, your attics insulation materials may be damp or wet. As such, they have to be removed and replaced.
Place the wet and moldy insulators inside thick plastic bags and seal it tightly to avoid the spread of mold spores. Take these plastic bags outside immediately.
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How To Get Rid Of Mold On Fabric
Those damp towels or gym clothes forgotten in a bag create an environment where mold can flourish if left too long. If you spot mold on these fabric items, here’s how to nix it:
- Bring the item outside and brush off the excess mold to prevent the mold spores from getting inside your home.
- If the fabric is machine washable, rub in liquid laundry detergent and wash it on the hottest setting possible according to the care instructions with chlorine bleach or non-cholorine bleach, as specified by the care instructions.
- If the fabric is not machine washable, dry cleaning or hand washing will remove the mold.
Diy Steps On How To Remove Mold From Attic Plywood
To detect signs of mold in the attic, you need to check the area routinely. The routine allows you to recognize any issue in advance and prevent panic scenarios. There are several signs of mold in the attic area to look for.
The first and easiest sign to detect is discovering discoloration or black stains on plywood in the attic. At this point, the problem is more than moisture, but rather molds. Second, if the area feels hot and stuffy instead of cool and airy, then it should be taken as a sign of bad ventilation that can cause mold.
Poor ventilation during cold seasons may make the water vapor below the roof freeze, so check if theres any buildup of frost that may cause mold. Another sign to look for is the smell you would detect moldy and musty smells in the attic area.
Now, if your attic area possesses one or more signs of mold, as stated above, then know that its possible to remove the mold on your own, as long as the affected area is small . If you choose to take the project yourself, you need to take precautions such as wearing clothes and shoes that can be thrown away after performing the task and wearing P-100 or N-95 respirators, gloves, and goggles. You also have to ventilate the area while tackling the job. Prepare a disposal bag to contain the moldy debris as well.
If you have prepared well, then heres what you need to do to eliminate attic molds:
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Diy Attic Mold Removal
To clean a hard surface , simply add hydrogen peroxide OR white vinegar to a clean, empty spray bottle undiluted. Never mix these chemicals! Choose one or the other.
When using hydrogen peroxide, spray the area to clean thoroughly, and let it sit for 10-15 minutes. Then, scrub the area, and rinse it clean with water. Repeat if needed.
For white vinegar, spray the area to clean thoroughly, and let it sit for at least 15 minutes or up to one hour. Then, scrub the area, and rinse it clean with water.
To use baking soda, add a teaspoon to a tablespoon of baking soda to a clean empty spray bottle and fill the bottle ¾ full of hot water. Shake to dissolve. Spray the area and use a scrub brush to clean the mold away. Then, rinse the area with clean water.
When using baking soda, it usually works best with a white vinegar spray following the baking soda, but not at the same time. The baking soda should be scrubbed away and rinsed before spraying with vinegar.
Baking soda is a base and vinegar is an acid. When they are used together, they react to form carbon dioxide gas and heat. The chemicals then are neutralized and have less cleaning power than they would if they had been used separately.
How To Remove Mold In Attic
It is important to get rid of the mold in attic entirely. If you leave one spot of mold, it can keep reproducing and release even more spores into the attic.
This is why some people prefer to call a mold removal service and specialist to examine and clean the mold.
Basically, the woods should be cleaned using a kind of biocide or mold remover. Still, you will need to replace some absorbent like insulation, drywall, and woods.
For woods that have not been heavily affected, you can use sandpaper to get rid of the molds.
If you prefer to do it by yourself, here are some useful tips:
- Wear protective gears like hand gloves, goggles, and mask.
- Clean clothes and other fabrics that you use immediately after eradicating the molds.
- Any ventilation and windows directing to the house should be sealed using plastic bags to avoid spores from drifting into the house.
- Throw away unused insulation, drywall, and woods into a plastic bag to make sure it does not make any contact with other mediums.
- Use air machine to let out the air from the attic to prevent mold spores going into the house.
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Diy Attic Mold Removal Cleaning Softer Surfaces
Hard surfaces generally are able to be cleaned, and most of the time mold will not grow back if it is completely removed and the moisture problem has been fixed. Soft surfaces , are not always able to be cleaned completely enough to keep the mold from coming back.
Depending on how deep the mold penetrates the materials, upholstered furniture could be cleaned by a professional. Linens, clothes, and towels can be laundered in hot water to remove the mold, but stains may remain.
Leather tends to mold quickly in warm, damp environments such as basements.
Leather is prone to mold damage, and can be cleaned. However, leather should not be kept in a basement or location where moisture levels are high. To clean leather check out The Spruces Step-By-Step Guide on How to Clean Mold From Leather. You can also have significant or sentimental leather items cleaned by a professional leather cleaner.
When you have softer surfaces such as wood, insulation,carpet, drywall, and furniture that have been contaminated with mold, its time to It is very difficult to tell just how much of the surface has really been invaded by the mold just by looking because mold grows inside of its food sources.
Mold In Attic And 7 Steps To Eliminate It
Keep the attic clean can be troublesome especially when you look at some disturbing mold in the attic.
The growth of mold in the attic comes as an excess moisture consequence. Therefore, whatever the cause of the appearance of attic mold, you need to take over the situation immediately and properly.
Before the moldkeeps growing and spreading to some areas, it is suggested that you clean andeliminate the mold. What mold in the attic is and how to eliminate it? Letsfigure out.
What is Mold in Attic?
Patches in parts of your attic can drive you nut.Those patches mean that the mold isgrowing and spreading. The growth of attic moldusually comes in a wide variety of growth patterns and colors.
Some mold in attic causes is brought about by leaky roofs, air conditioning appliances, improper venting from vents or pipes and ventilation, as well as the hot and humid climates.
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How Do You Prevent Attic Mold
Inspect your attic four times per year. This is the best way to ensure that a leak doesnt go unnoticed for too long and that everything else is copacetic in attic land. Things to look for include:
- Discolorationof insulation and wood .
- Wetareas in roof valleys , which are highlysusceptible to roof leaks.
- Raisedshingles. When shingles become brittle and dry they are subject to nails pushingthe shingles upward and exposing the interior joists and other structures ofthe interior roof. High winds can also push old and damaged shingles upward allowingrain into your attic.
- Skylights,chimneys, attic windows and any portion of the attic/roof where dissimilarmaterials join each other . These places are hotbeds forpotential moisture intrusion.
- Condensationunderneath a vapor barrier if one is installed.
- Leakscoming from and around attic plumbing stacks.
- Soffitvents. Make sure they are free ofinsulation, bird nests, and other debris that could be blocking them andpreventing proper air flow.
- Discoloredinsulation. This is a sign of leaking air as insulation acts as a filter,becoming discolored in areas of air infiltration. Leaking areas cantypically be caulked from within the attic to prevent warm, moist interior airfrom entering the attic where it may condense and create elevatedmoisture conditions conducive to mold growth.
Dont used your attic as storage. The less there is in your attic, the better.
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For many of us, no matter how hard we try to keep our homes dry and free of mold and mildew, we often forget about certain places in our basements and attics. People who live in warm and damp climates, even if it only gets hot and humid for a month or two out of the entire year, tend to have the most trouble staying on top of mold infestations. Excess moisture is one of the leading causes of mold growth in homes, so it could very well be that a mold infestation in your attic might be growing as a result of a roof leak or poor ventilation. This infestation can gradually become more widespread if left unresolved, so as soon as it becomes apparent to you, you need to begin to research how to kill mold in your attic.
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Does Insurance Covers Mold In Attic
Nevertheless, removing molds in attic can be a challenge to your expenses. As a solution, there is some homeowners insurance that covers for mold. In principal, insurance does cover mold from unexpected disasters such as storm and flood.
If the mold develops from a slow-going problem like leaked pipe or ventilation, insurance will be less likely to cover it. So, before you make any insurance claim, make sure that you have the right reason to claim.
Otherwise, your insurance claim might be rejected, and you will end up paying for the removal from your savings.
Signs Of Mold In The Attic
The following are the 3 major signs you should not ignore.
- Leaking: Sometimes, roofs get damaged or have leaks, and it provides mold in a safe position to spread. If the water is continuously dripping from the roof, it creates moisture and increases the humidity level in the attic. A rotten roof consists of fiber, which is considered the heaven of mold spores. Check frequently to see whether there are any leaks or not on the roof to detect the mold as early as possible.
- The smell from the attic: Smell can tell pretty well that you have molds in your house. If you ever visit any old book shop, you will feel some nasty smell on your nose. When you enter your home, if you feel the same kind of smell when you enter your house, there is a higher possibility that you have mold on your attic.
- Finding spots: Most of the time, mold leaves spots when they start spreading all over the attic. These are grey or brown colors, but black molds are more dangerous. If you find any black spots on your attic, try to take some immediate action to remove them. Also, black molds grow very fast and have serious health issues.
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Where Not To Use Hydrogen Peroxide To Remove Mold And Mildew
As we mentioned, hydrogen peroxide is unlikely to inhibit mold growth on porous surfaces like fabrics and wood. If you notice mold on bath rugs, wooden walls, or other porous surfaces, the object or surface will need to be safely discarded according to your local disposal rules.
Hydrogen peroxide has the potential to bleach some types of natural fabrics like wool.
Hydrogen peroxide is generally safe on solid surfaces and even most synthetic fabrics. To avoid accidental bleaching, make sure to clean off all the hydrogen peroxide once you finish cleaning the mold.
When cleaning mold in your home, its a good idea to wear protective gloves, goggles, and a mask to prevent coming into contact with mold spores.
Heres how you can clean mold from solid surfaces using hydrogen peroxide:
Hydrogen peroxide is just one of many household ingredients you can use to clean mold. Using vinegar is another effective way to clean mold in your home.
However, its important not to mix hydrogen peroxide and vinegar together.
How To Prevent Black Mold In Attic
Here are some recommended methods to prevent mold growth:
- Install dedicated dryer vent port
Many people install dryer vent port that opens into the attic, which makes the attic warm and damp. You need to have dedicated dryer vent port, and avoid releasing excessive moisture and heat into the closed attic.
- Keep the roof and plumbing system in good condition
Leak from roofs or plumbing systems can cause growth in the attic. Make sure you regularly check the roof and rain gutter, and fix all damages as proper as possible. Check the plumbing system whenever you see signs of a leak, such as moisture/damp spot on the wall surface.
- Create separate room for water heater and furnace
If you install a water heater and furnace in the attic, make sure to provide a dedicated room for them. The room must be insulated and sealed, preventing heat and moisture to seep into the attic.
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Diy Attic Mold Clean Up
The key to D.I.Y mold removal is to catch it early so it prevents the mold from spreading and causing any further damage to you and your home. It is difficult to handle large concentrations of mold by yourself especially if you have allergies or an already weakened immune system. With very small cases of mold in your attic, theres an option to remove it through the use of applying bleach and then scrubbing it out. However, this may only be a temporary solution to removing mold from your attic. With larger concentrations of mold, it can be more complicated to handle and using just bleach may not be the most effective way to go about removing the mold. Other precautions you should consider taking before attempting to remove mold from your attic include the following:
Find The Moisture Source
Black mold removal is important. But first, one must identify that it is black mold. First, look at the color, followed by the smell. Black mold is black or even dark grey in color, and often smells wet and musty, as it usually grows in areas with a lot of moisture. Black mold is also usually noticeable in the home if you experience a burning or scratching sensation in your throat or lungs. Black mold is dangerous, and can greatly affect your health if left untreated, so it’s important to remove it as soon as you’re aware of it.
Before you can begin any black mold treatment, youll need to perform a black mold test and find the source. Its often the result of excess moisture in a particular area. Youre most likely to find black mold in areas of your home that you dont visit as often like the basement, but it can pop up anywhere. Here are a few common moisture sources to look for:
- Faucets and fixtures. Sink, shower and bathtub faucets and fixtures that are leaking can lead to the growth of black mold over time.
- Exposed plumbing. Damaged or leaking pipes, especially in warmer temperatures, can often create black mold in areas like basements.
- Water heaters. A small leak can create black mold in your basement or water heater closet.
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