What Does Black Mold Look Like?
May 20, 2022
What Does Black Mold Look Like?
Black mold is unsightly and a hazard to your health. Also known as stachybotrys chartarum, a type of fungus, this toxic mold grows in dark, humid areas like other varieties do. It also releases musty odors similar to rotting plants or vegetables, not to mention spores that spread throughout the air. These can be breathed in and even absorbed through your skin.
The question, “What does black mold look like?”, is important for everyone, not just high-risk individuals. It is known to cause respiratory issues. Prolonged exposure can cause sneezing, coughing, and itchy throat. Individuals with existing respiratory problems such as asthma are at greater odds of experiencing long-term health effects. Infants are at particularly high risk.
The Appearance of Black Mold
It typically appears as black or dark gray patches (sometimes with a greenish tint), usually growing in a circular pattern. Sometimes the pattern consists of concentric circles. However, it can grow in irregular patterns up to several inches across. It can grow across walls, floors, and ceilings.
There usually isn’t much texture to black mold although it may appear slightly furry Due to its moist environment, patches often appear shiny or slimy. It may look dry or powdery if the area has dried up or the leak that caused the mold to grow has been fixed.
To start, black mold begins growing in fuzzy white fibers, although this isn’t commonly observed since the mold tends to take hold in hidden areas. It often looks gray or green in the center, with white at the edges, until it reaches maturity.
Where Can I Find Black Mold?
If you suspect you have a mold problem, check high moisture areas. Black mold is most commonly found in bathrooms. But it can grow in any damp area with high temperatures and poor ventilation. This includes kitchens, laundry rooms, and basements. It’s not uncommon to see black mold on wooden surfaces near water sources, including under-sink cabinets, wooden furniture, and wood trims along walls. On wood, the mold can grow on the surface and deep into its pores, making removal very difficult.
Black mold often takes hold in corners where there’s been dampness or flooding. You can also find it growing in drywall and underneath carpets. This toxic fungus will grow into any porous surface. Whenever you see it, chances are it has already infiltrated many parts of your home and the problem lies deeper than you think.
How Do I Know I Have Toxigenic Mold?
Black mold can be mistaken for a stain. But it’s not so easy to clean up. If you wiped it away and still see dark spots, mold is present. You don’t always need a professional to determine if it’s mold. Using a cotton swab or rag, place the material in undiluted bleach; then lightly dab a spot on the moldy area. Mold will seem to quickly disappear and then come back. In response to harsh chemicals, it will grow deeper into a porous surface and later resurface as the colony resumes its growth.
How Do I Get Rid of Black Mold?
Spraying tea tree oil and grapefruit seed extract can help fight black mold. Let it sit for up to 10 minutes, scrub the surface with a nylon bristle brush, and wipe the area clean with a rag or paper towel. But attempting to remove it yourself increases the risk of exposure and health issues associated with it. Therefore, it’s usually best to have a professional deal with the problem.
Insulate the Crawlspace
Insulation should be installed after water vapor barriers and vents have been installed. For example, fiberglass batts install easily between floor joists and are effective insulators. They can be paired with spray foam insulation to provide a tighter seal against air movement and heat transfer. For small nooks and crannies, spray foam may be enough to keep in warm air and block out cold. Temperature control in the crawlspace also helps improve the efficiency of your HVAC system.
Contact Restorerz for Mold Remediation
If you find yourself asking, “What does black mold look like?” and find unusual growth in your home, contact Restorerz. We specialize in mold remediation in Los Angeles. Our mold removal experts can safely and effectively get rid of the mold and prevent it from coming back. Available 24/7, we also fix water and flood damage and offer a wide range of cleaning services. To get started, request service online or call 323-709-7536 today.