We all know that having mold in your home is a serious problem that needs to be addressed. What people fail to realize, is that having mold in your crawl space is just as dangerous and should be handled swiftly and with care. The reason mold is the crawlspace is a problem is twofold. One, because mold and moisture can cause structural damage to the wood members under your house. This can lead to costly repairs and longer-term repercussions. Two, because mold in the crawl space can directly affect your homes indoor air quality. This happens through a process called stack effect.
Stack effect (also known as chimney effect) is the movement of air into and out of a property from air buoyancy. This happens due to convection – the warmest air rises to the upper levels of your home and attic and exterior air is pulled into the crawlspace. This means air is pulled upwards through the crawl space and anything that is in the air will be brought with it (including mold spores). Have a clean and mold free crawlspace is crucial to having great indoor air quality in your home.
Now, that we know why its important to have a mold free and healthy crawl space. Lets look at some information about why mold grows in crawlspaces and what to do about it:
Why do you have mold in your crawl space?
There could be many reasons that there is mold in your crawl space, but all of the reasons include a form of moisture being present which includes leaks, flooding, humidity and more. Crawl spaces are also a perfect environment for mold as it thrives in environments that are dark, warm, and wet. Luckily, moisture is the key to mold growth, without it, it will not grow. Therefore, it is crucial to identify and repair the source of the moisture in your crawl space.
How to tell if you have mold in your crawl space?
The easiest way to tell if you have mold in your crawlspace is by doing a visual inspection. Most of the time, mold in the crawlspace is visibly growing and easy to identify, however, is not always visible and can sometimes grow in places that are hard to see (like behind insulation and hard to reach areas). Mold can also be identified by its smell which can be described as a musty and unpleasant odor.
If you have concerns about mold growing in your crawl space, it is best to call out a professional as they will be able to confirm (or deny) its presence and will be able to identify the type of mold.
What to do if you identify mold in your crawl space?
The best thing to do if you find mold in your crawl space is to call a professional mold removal company. They will be able to identify and remove the mold. Then, they will help you come up with a plan to ensure the moisture issue is resolved so that mold does not come back.
Simply cleaning the mold will not solve the problem.