Whether you own your own home or you rent a home or apartment, making sure it is a safe place to live is always important. Having smoke detectors in good working order and a functioning fire extinguisher on hand are a couple of things most people make sure they have. Looking out for electrical shorts in cords is also a safety precaution. What many people do not always remember to do is check occasionally for the development of mold throughout the home.
What Mold Can Be Doing
Mold can be silently playing havoc with the health of you and your family and you may not even notice it right away. It can cause sneezing, coughing, rashes and other allergic reactions. It can be especially bad for babies and children, elderly people and any pets you have. While these may seem like common symptoms that everyone has from time to time, when large amounts of mold is present, these symptoms can be recurring more than what is normal.
Different Molds, Different Effects
While a little mold is common is almost any household, it can be the amount of mold or the type of mold that makes a huge difference in whether or not it is a big concern. Most people don’t realize how many different types of mold there are. Aspergillus, cladosporium and stachybotrys atra are the most commonly found. Stachybotrys atra is black mold and the most concerning of these three types.
Mold can sometimes be spotted easily if you have a leaking toilet, tub or shower in a bathroom or around your kitchen sink, but it’s the mold you don’t see that can quickly become a problem. Mold can grow underneath and around water using appliances like your washing machine or refrigerator if there is a water line for a water dispenser or ice maker. Hot water heaters can leak and cause mold you might not notice right away. Air conditioning units can get mold inside them too. If you have leaky windows that allows rainwater to seep in, mold can be hidden behind the window frames and baseboards and under the floor coverings like linoleum, carpet or hardwood.
What To Do
Whether you actually spot mold growing somewhere in your home or if you are suspicious that it could be undetected and causing some health issues, there is a simple and relatively inexpensive way to find out. Before you call in Damage Control 911, just by purchasing a home mold testing kit you can be certain if you have a mold issue or not. These mold testing kits can range in cost from about $39 bucks and up to a few of hundred. The kit you choose will depend on what types of mold you are looking for and how thorough you want to be.
What a Kit Offers
Some mold test kits will require that you take samples and send them off to be analyzed. Others offer you results right away without having to bother mailing anything in. With some kits it’s as simple as swabbing an area of dust somewhere in the home and then by following simple instructions, the indicator lets you know if certain types of mold are present, black mold being the most important to identify.
Get an Inspection
Having a home inspection check list that you can use from time to time is helpful when looking for repairs that are needed around the home. Checking things like light fixtures, electrical outlets, appliances connections and so on helps keep you on top of things. Most people will also look for leaking faucets and pipes to avoid serious water damage. Whether you find any obvious leaks or not, adding a mold testing kit to your home inspection is an excellent idea to perhaps help you detect unseen water issues that can easily run into thousands of dollars in repair as well as jeopardize the health of you and your family.