How to Prevent Black Mold

Tips on how to curb indoor moisture, and the mold that thrives from it.

  • Jun 21, 2018
  • |
  • 4 minute read
Black Mold Indianapolis

What is Mold?

Mold is a general term used to describe many types of fungi that can create unsightly patches of black, brown and green growths. Patches of fungi grow when mold spores come into contact with excessive moisture often found in damp, indoor environments. The presence of black mold can be unsightly, smelly, and has the greatest potential to negatively impact your health.

Where is Mold Found?

Similar to other molds, black mold flourishes in dark, warm and moist places on your property. Black mold commonly grows in basements, under cabinets, on baseboards, behind drywall, and in carpet padding. 

Black Mold on Window Sill Black Mold on Window Sill

You'll even find mold in closets if articles of clothing are left damp. Bathrooms are often susceptible to mold growth due to the presence of excessive moisture and humidity. Other sources of moisture include leaky pipes, basement cracks, and condensation from large appliances.

Can Mold Impact My Health?

Exposure to black mold may cause minor or major reactions depending on your sensitivity and time of exposure to the fungi. Minor allergic reactions that often subside after a few hours include sneezing, sniffling, rashes and itchy eyes. 

 More severe reactions include vomiting, nausea, and random nose bleeds. It's imperative that black mold is removed immediately to avoid long-term health risks and prevent structural damage to your property. 

How to Prevent Black Mold?

Preventing black mold from forming is quite simple; controlling humidity and moister in your property. The following are the best ways to prevent black mold from forming on your property.

1. Increase air circulation and ventilation

Try to vent out stale air by opening the windows and use the ceiling, oscillating or standing fans for air circulation inside your property. Providing a source of fresh air helps in controlling humidity in your house.

2. Clean standing water and spills immediately

Mold spores will start to grow on wet surfaces between 24 and 48 hours after the initial onset of moisture. It is crucial to remove standing water immediately to prevent water damage and mold spore growth. Be sure to extract water from standing furniture, baseboards, clothes, and carpets.

Water Extraction from Carpet Water Extraction from Carpet

3. Avoid damp clothes

Mold will start growing on your wet clothes if you leave them in the washing machine for a few hours. After the washing cycle is complete, remove your clothes from the washing machine and transfer them to the hanging line or the drier. 

To make it easier, set a timer when you started laundry so you won't forget. Also, never leave damp towels or clothes in a laundry basket or lying around on the floor.

4. Ensure bathroom ventilation

When taking a shower you'll want to make sure there's proper ventilation for the moisture to escape. It's important to keep stale and humid air out of your bathroom. 

Ensure Proper Ventilation Ensure Proper Ventilation

Newer homes often have bathroom exhaust fans that push out moisture and circulate the air. In older homes without fans you'll want to crack a window open and utilize a standing fan when appropriate.

5. Empty appliance drip trays frequently

Appliances such as dehumidifiers, refrigerators and air conditioners often have drip trays that catch water and moister. To prevent mold from growing in any of the appliances, ensure that you clean and drain drip trays frequently. This will also prevent the recirculation and spread of mold spores throughout your property.

6. Replace carpets with area rugs

You should not carpet areas that are exposed to excessive moisture and humidity. Instead, install area rugs in your bathrooms and basement. Carpet padding traps moisture, and becomes a conduit for mold growth.