Very often we see greenish-black fungus in our homes. This substance which is slimy to touch, is a fungus, which goes by the name black mold, it often makes moist areas their place of residence. The areas where mold growth can be seen include exterior walls, windows and doors, under sinks and cabinets and the most affected are the bathrooms. Black mold in bathroom is a very common phenomena as mold thrives in humid places and certainly bathrooms offer the right environment.
What is a Black Mold?
Black mold is a fungus known as Stachybotrys chartarum or Stachybotrys atra. There are two types of molds; toxic and non-toxic. However, without conducting a lab test on these molds it is difficult to ascertain whether the molds are toxic or non-toxic. Hence, it is important to keep your homes free of molds, as a home with molds is not a healthy place to live in. The most common cause of this condition is poor quality of air in the affected part. The other cause is if the building has been damaged by water, it will give the mold a conducive environment to thrive.
Spotting Black Mold
Spotting a black mold in your bathroom or on the walls is not very difficult, as this fungus makes its presence 'visible'. Black mold on walls usually propagate from cracks and corners in the house and grow along the joints. If you have ceramic tiles you will notice that this fungus grows really fast. The other areas, where you need to look include water leaks through pipes and roof leaks. It is advisable to get rid of these molds at the earliest as they can ruin your bathroom and also affect the health of a family member.
The molds attach themselves to dead organic substances, but are airborne, which means they can be easily transmitted into your homes. Since they are carried through the air, the pores enter through your windows and doors from the neighborhood. Black mold are usually found on ceilings, cardboard, damp wood or even on stuff made out of cotton as well. The probable symptoms of black molds and areas where you should look for black molds are:
- High humidity areas become the playground for these black molds. The black mold in your bathroom is due to the moist conditions in the bathroom. If you live in regions where the humidity is high, remember that the humidity in the air will naturally affect the conditions in the house as well.
- If you notice that a pipe is leaking, get it fixed at the earliest, as leaking pipes are excellent areas for the development of this fungus.
- Leaky roofs can also give rise to black molds on walls. If you have previously noticed any signs of leaky roofs, then you should be on watch for these tyrants.
- Flooding causes the growth of these molds. It is natural, as the house will take longer to dry off after the flood.
- In case more than one person is displaying mold allergy symptoms which includes respiratory problems, it can be due to the presence of molds in your house, especially more so if you notice more than one sign of the mold.
- If you use humidifiers, they can raise the humidity in the air and provide a conducive environment for these molds to propagate.
- It is nice to keep your place green, however, houseplants need constant watering, which leads to increase in moisture levels in the house.
- If paint on any of your house walls is peeling or is cracked it means that there is moisture, which has built up behind the paint. However, by this time the molds might have already set up residence in such damp and moisture rich areas.
- Last but not the least, bathrooms are their favorite breeding ground as the presence of moisture and tiles give them the most suitable environment to thrive in. Usually, the tile grout is porous, due to which water penetrates through the flooring giving rise to black mold colonies.
Traditional Method to Get Rid of Black Mold
The traditional method of black mold remediation involves scrapping the mold off the surface, after which the whole wall should be cleaned with water. Add a cup of bleach to a gallon of water and use this mixture to clean the area again. Among the various simple and easy to use mold products and services available, bleach, is one of the most commonly used disinfectant for mold removal. However, bleaching the walls is a process which you will have to undertake regularly, as the mold shows back after regular intervals.
These days there is a method called encapsulation used to rid the bathrooms of mold infestation. When this method is used, the spores are not released in the air, but they are trapped inside itself. This ensures that the spores do not fly away to other parts of the house and infest other parts of the house. At the same time, since they are trapped they eventually perish away.
Now the question arises, how to remove black molds which have dried? If the molds have dried and if you want to remove them, you should take utmost precaution while doing so. When the dried molds are scrapped they are released into the air and can cause severe respiratory problems, especially in people suffering from asthma. Therefore, it is important that you use a respiratory mask, eye protection gear and also make sure no part of your skin is exposed. Then the bleach solution can be used on the affected part.
If you notice any family member showing symptoms of black mold, get it checked immediately as they can cause innumerable health problems for a person. Extreme care must be taken to prevent the propagation of black mold anywhere in the house to avoid the health hazards that it can cause to a family member or the entire family.