What Exactly Is White Mold?
White mold is a type of fungus that includes a wide variety of white-colored mold species. White mold can appear as a soft/fuzzy texture or a light powdery texture. It grows and spreads because of excess moisture. This moisture could be the result of heavy rainfall, plumbing leaks, or poor dehumidification.
White Mold, Efflorescence, and Mildew
White mold is often confused with mildew and efflorescence. However, mildew and efflorescence often develop into mold if left untreated. The difference between mold and mildew is that mold has a stronger and more noticeable odor. Also, mildew often only grows on plants and in an outdoor setting. White mold and efflorescence are more commonly confused than mold and mildew. The difference between white mold and efflorescence is that the latter can vary between white, brown, and yellow colors. Efflorescence also has no odor and dissolves in water, unlike white mold.
White Mold and Your Crawl Space
White mold can be found in two places located within your crawl space. The first and most common place is where the structure meets the soil. As rainfall and water amass in the soil and make it damp, mold can grow as humidity follows the rainfall. In climates like that of Indiana, exposed soil can propagate the growth of white mold. Often, this is due to an incomplete or missing vapor barrier. The dirt, limited airflow, and excess moisture increase humidity and thus allow for mold growth. White mold can also form on the floor joists of your crawl space under certain conditions.
What are the Signs of White Mold Growth?
It isn’t rare for the climate of Indiana to warrant white mold growth, especially in crawl spaces. It is especially important to detect the growth of white mold in its initial stages before it spreads. Doing so can prove to prevent further damage to the structural integrity of your home–as well as your physical health.
Dampness and increased humidity in and around your crawl space are solid indicators that your crawl space is experiencing mold growth. Often, a musty odor is emitted in conjunction with the growth of white mold. This odor can cause mild to severe allergic reactions. These reactions may include sneezing, watery eyes, itchy skin, coughing, shortness of breath, dizziness, and in severe cases even asthma.
Mold grows fast. Don’t be surprised if you notice significant changes around your home, or experience any of the symptoms that come with exposure to white mold. In any event, inspecting your crawlspace for white mold and keeping in mind the signs that may indicate its growth will help you to prevent it from spreading.
How to Easily Detect White Mold
A straightforward way to detect white mold is through a process called direct mold sampling. The goal is to collect a small amount of the possible mold and test it to determine if you do in fact have white mold. Because different fungi require different treatments, getting a sample is an excellent investment. There are many different variations of this practice, including swab/bulk samples and tape lifts. These are common processes that a local crawl space professional can conduct. They will collect samples, then send them to a lab for analysis.
Have a Professional Take a Look!
Mold of any variety can cause mild to severe allergic reactions and health problems that can be as serious as an asthma diagnosis. It is best to seek the expertise of a specialist when you suspect that your crawl space has accumulated mold.
Indiana Foundation Service specializes in preventing mold that may accumulate in or around your home. Our experts also specialize in waterproofing, which is a reliable way to avoid mold growth. Don’t go with just anyone to solve your mold problem; go with the experts! Our specialists have amassed nearly 30 years of experience in helping the local homeowners of Indiana. Contact us today for your free inspection and be done with white mold for the last time!