Locating Mold in Your Basement

by Claire on September 14, 2013

Many things hide in basements but the worst of these can be toxic mold.  It is important you have home owners insurance form a company like Charles Goodman & Co Insurance to help protect you in case you end up having toxic mold in your house. Actually, any kind of mold isn’t great. You can usually tell if there’s mold in your basement when you smell a musty type of odor in your home. Basement mold typically hides in a corner or crack, but the odor will still permeate your house and you’ll know that you’ve got mold.

Besides the odor, there are other ways to tell if your basement is infested with mold. They include:

  • Examining the basement walls and floors: Black mold forms in patches or streaks. It’s slimy in appearance and has a black, green or occasional white color with orange spots. Watch for yellowish tinted stains. Also, look under sinks and around pipes. Mold in Your Basement
  • Pay attention to any musty or damp smell: This is an odor that you may notice in your house if your basement has mold. Also, pay attention to any of these smells that may come when you’re using the air conditioning or heating units. If you do, mold may have infested those systems, but that’s not very common.
  • Use a mold testing kit in your basement: You can find these at any home improvement or hardware store and even online. The test must be tested by a mold laboratory to see what type of mold you have in your basement and how bad the infestation is.
  • Watch for symptoms of black mold poisoning: Black mold is very toxic and creates a dangerous environment in your home. People exposed to this mold can become poisoned. Symptoms of black mold poisoning include coughing, nausea, skin rashes, headaches, respiratory issues, and dizziness.
  • Closely examine any organic surfaces located in your basement: You’re looking for evidence that water is leaking in. You’ve probably got mold growing on the damp surfaces in your basement. If you see stains on the floor or remnants of cardboard boxes that got wet and were removed, you’ve probably got mold.
  • Look at the back of the basement steps: Pay extra attention to treads or low risers.
  • Inspect furniture and anything else you store in your basement: Look closely underneath the furniture or game tables.
  • Inspect insulation for mold as well as for dry wall mold: You may find cavities of a leaking roof that will cause mold to grow on hidden drywall surfaces.
  • Check for peeling paint or wallpaper: This is a good indication of dampness and is possible that mold is growing there. If you wash and dry clothes in your basement, an unventilated clothes dryer can encourage mold because of its humidity.
  • Inspect closets and shelves in the basement: You may find the presence of mold, particularly if there are partly dry clothes there.

If you find any signs of mold, especially toxic black mold, in your basement, you’ll want to be sure it’s cleaned and removed as soon as possible. Don’t hesitate to call a professional mold removal service if the situation is serious.

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