Myths About Mold and Mildew

Mold and mildew are infectious growths that can make your home unsafe and unlivable. They can ruin your furniture, your flooring, your walls, the wood surrounding your windows and so much more. It’s common knowledge that excessive moisture buildup causes mold and/or mildew growth, but there are still many fallacies surrounding these two nuisances. Below are four myths about mold and mildew.

Myth 1: Mold Can Be Removed Without Professional Help

Many homeowners believe that they can remove mold on their own, but the only way to truly get rid of a mold infestation is to call in a professional mold removal company. Professionals will remove infested materials, repair any sources of moisture and blast mold away via dry ice blasting. Dry ice blasting is the quickest, most effective way to remove mold from surfaces and inside walls, floorboards and other hard-to-reach places. Remember that if mold is visible on your walls or other places, you most likely have an infestation in those areas. A professional will first test to determine whether it’s mold or mildew, as well as address the underlying cause of moisture. If the mold is visible on an area of more than 10 square feet, call a professional, like Brothers in Grime, for immediate removal.

Myth 2: Mold and Mildew are the Same

Mold and mildew each have distinctive properties that can be used to help you identify them and tell the difference between the two. Mold appears as fuzzy green, white, blue, brown, grey, yellow or black spots in splatter-like patterns. These spots are actually mold spores that form in clusters and grow into the pores of surfaces. It’s an aggressive fungus that’s commonly found in wood, drywall and tile grout. Infestations of mold are devastating and the fungus can destroy your furniture, walls, flooring, your home’s entire structure and indoor air quality (IAQ). Diminished IAQ and mold spores can cause mild to serious health issues, including:

  • Headaches
  • Allergic reactions
  • Respiratory infections
  • Exacerbation of asthma and other respiratory conditions
  • Sinus Infections

On the other hand, mildew is a light-brown, white or yellow powdery substance that grows in a flat pattern on walls and other surfaces. It’s most commonly found on tiles and in bathrooms. However, it’s not a ‘burrowing’ fungus like mold, and usually doesn’t work its way deep into walls, floors and other structures. Plus, mildew doesn’t usually cause dangerous infestations, but like mold, it can cause mild respiratory issues and allergies.

Bleach Can Kill Mold

Once again, mold can only be killed with professional equipment and methods. Bleach can remove mildew from the surface, but it’s not penetrative. Therefore, it can’t remove mold or mildew from porous materials where mold usually lives. The surface of any porous structure with mold can be cleaned, but professional help will be needed to remove the mold that’s growing inside. On the other hand, mildew can be cleaned with bleach. The difference: mildew stains will disappear permanently, whereas mold spores will return a few days later. Note: If you see mold spores, don’t attempt to clean them, as the water from your cleaning solution can seep into porous surfaces and contribute to mold growth.

If you’re unsure if you have a mold or a mildew problem, give us a call.

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