HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE MOLD TO GROW AT MY HOME?
Water damage from flooding, leaks or high humidity can not only damage your home and its contents, but also cause mold growth. Mold can grow quickly after water damage, making the restoration process more difficult. Even a small amount of moisture, if not handled quickly and properly, can turn into a large mold infestation in just 24 to 48 hours.
Tiny airborne particles that are not visible to the naked eye or better known as mold spores exist everywhere in nature, and they can grow into visible mold after a water damage incident in just a day or two. When it starts invading your home, mold can threaten the health of everyone living in the property. Mold exposure is especially dangerous for people with breathing problems. However, if you act fast you can avoid mold growth on your property. All it takes is eliminating the moisture before mold has the chance to start growing.
How Long Does It Take Mold To Grow After A Leak?
The time it takes for mold to grow and appear depends on the species of mold, the material it’s growing on, and the amount of moisture it has, among other things. Given the right conditions, mold will start to germinate and grow as early as 24 hours after encountering the moisture source. In 3 to 12 days, the mold spores will colonize. In 18-21 days, the mold can become visible. The longer the moisture is left alone the greater the chance for mold to grow.
But How Does Mold Cause Damage?
When mold grows on a surface, it uses the surface materials as a food source. As it eats at the organic materials, it damages its structure in the process. The longer the mold is allowed to eat at the material, the more damage it will cause. Eventually, if not treated, the mold will ruin the surface’s structural integrity, leaving it ineffective and unsalvageable. Health-wise, anyone exposed to mold can suffer from allergies, including coughing, wheezing, and irritation to your skin and eyes. Prolonged exposure will cause more serious problems.
So How Do I Stop Mold From Growing?
- Be sure the air in your home flows freely. Use exhaust fans that vent outside your home in the kitchen and bathroom. Make sure your clothes dryer vents outside your home.
- Fix any leaks in your home’s roof, walls, or plumbing so mold does not have moisture to grow.
- Clean up and dry out your home fully and quickly (within 24–48 hours) after a flood.
- Clean bathrooms with mold-killing products.
- Remove or replace carpets and upholstery that have been soaked and cannot be dried right away. Think about not using carpet in places like bathrooms or basements that may have a lot of moisture.
- Keep air conditioning between 68 and 74 degrees
If you suspect mold problems in your home, there’s usually no need to conduct a mold assessment or have a mold inspection. As soon as mold is visible, it’s time to call in the removal specialists, instead of worrying whether it’s a toxic variety or not.