With the high humidity, frequent thunderstorms, and the potential for seasonal hurricanes, mold is always a concern in the Gulf Coast region. If you have found a patch of mold in your building, you may be wondering how great a risk it poses. Action Restoration is here to clarify what kinds of mold are most common and how to identify them. For mold removal or remediation in your home or business in the Gulf Coast region, contact us online today!
Identifying Common Household MoldsAlthough there are thousands of species of mold, only a handful are commonly found in the average home or business. Most are relatively harmless, while a few can cause irritation and allergy-like symptoms. The most concerning are “toxic” molds, which are less common and produce mycotoxins that have been linked to health conditions like allergic reactions, breathing trouble, and fatigue. Here are a few of the most common molds, and characteristics that can help you identify them:
- Aspergillus – This mold can often be found in air conditioning systems and on foods high in starch, such as breads and potatoes. The most common species feature a yellow-green surface coloring, with brown underneath, and they can cause allergic reactions, repository infections, and inflammation of the lungs.
- Aureobasidium – Often found in damp areas like window frames, bathroom rugs, or caulk, this mold is typically pink and black, and it is known to cause allergic reactions.
- Cladosporium – Black and green in color, this mold has an pepper-like appearance and can be found on surfaces like toilets, fiberglass ducts, fabrics, and wood. Although it is not toxic, it can cause irritation and allergy-like symptoms, such as watery eyes, sore throats, or respiratory problems.
- Chaetomium – Often found in buildings that have suffered extensive water damage, Chaetomium produces a musty odor and is dark green, brown, or black in color. Although it rarely causes health issues in humans, it can be an indication of more serious mold problems.
- Penicillium – Typically blue or green, this mold can easily be transferred from room to room, and it is common on wallpaper and textiles like carpets, mattresses, or curtains. It can cause allergic reactions, sinus infections, and lung inflammation.
- Stachybotrys chartarum – Often called “black mold” or “toxic mold,” Stachybotrys chartarum is dark in color and produces a musty odor. It is one of the most common molds associated with health problems due to its production of mycotoxins, and can cause allergic reactions, sinus infections, asthma symptoms, fatigue, and depression. It grows in extremely damp locations, like within air conditioning systems, near leaky pipes, and on porous surfaces like drywall. It can be extremely dangerous, especially for those sensitive to mold problems.
- Trichoderma – Often found on wallpaper, carpets, and other porous surfaces, Trichoderma can be green to bright green, often mixed with white. Like Stachybotrys chartarum, it produces mycotoxins that can cause serious health problems.