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Mold? Mildew? What’s The Difference?

Much is made about mold and mildew in the home, but what is less known and familiar to folks is the difference between the two. Both are a type of fungus that lives in warm, moist areas, and both are propagated by spores that are airborne until they find an area conducive to their growth.  They both grow in porous, organic areas such as drywall, insulation, carpet, upholstery, and foods.

The basic differences lie in their appearance. Mold is almost always a white or gray substance that is fuzzy or powdery in nature, whereas old is usually black, yellow, or green in color and may be slimy to the touch. Mold is also more toxic than mildew and may present serious health hazards from anyone who comes into close contact with it. Long term exposure to mold means skin irritation, watery eyes, shortness of breath, high fevers, and other similar allergic reactions.

Molds and mildews are found everywhere in the outdoor environment, but it is when they begin to thrive in an indoor habitat that they become dangerous. Molds and mildews are commonly found in kitchens, bathrooms, basements, crawlspaces, attics, and garages, but may occur in other rooms of the home as well. They can grow anywhere there is sufficient moisture to sustain them.

Property owners should consider hiring a mold remediation professional whenever mold infestations are found in the home or a place of business. These outfits will be able to isolate the mold problem and remove it without inadvertently spreading the mold to other areas of the home.

Mold may be prevented by taking steps to reduce the levels of humidity and moisture in the home, either through air conditioners, dehumidifiers, fans, opening of windows and doors, or any combination of these. Clean and sanitize bathrooms and kitchens frequently I order to prevent mold spores from finding a habitable location.

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