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Detecting Mold Is Easy When Using Light To Expose It

Jan 16, 2008
Did you know that not all the mold on your walls is as visible as you would like it to be? If all mold was visible, then we probably would not need to conduct mold tests to determine if it exists or not, but there is a way to detect the lightly colored molds that can exist in our homes.

Different members of the Penicillium sp. and Aspergillus sp. groups can be next to invisible on some surfaces and are missed a lot of times when you do a casual inspection. You can detect these molds, but it involves the use of a bright flashlight and the knowledge of how to use it to your advantage.

The trick to using a flashlight to detect mold growth on a surface is that you shine the light along the surface you are looking at instead of straight at it.

Shining the light directly onto the surface may reveal absolutely nothing. Using your flashlight carefully can make pretty large difference in whether you find the mold you are looking for or not.

Mold activity can also be hidden by wooden paneling that has been exposed to water or high amounts of moisture over time. Shining light along wood paneling can show that the paneling is buckled and possibly in need of removal.

There may be drywall or a simple cavity behind the drywall, since sometimes people replace water damaged drywall with paneling to save money. Moisture does not always mean that there is a mold problem, but it does mean that you should at least look.

The point of this is to cause you to realize that not all incidents of hidden mold are actually inside the walls in places where we cannot see them without tearing out part of it.

Realizing that mold can grow on surfaces such as wood paneling and we just cannot see them without looking for them properly can mean the difference between a clean house and an infested one. Some species that are lightly colored like this can be quite harmful and missing them simply because you do not know how to look for them can be pretty aggravating.

You should not only look for the black mold that you hear about on the news and in other media, since not all black molds are harmful to people or the buildings that they grow in. Ceratocystis is a black mold that is merely cosmetic, but mistaking it for Stachybotrys atra and calling in a removal service for thousands of dollars can be a tragedy.
About the Author
Jim Corkern is a writer and promoter of
Ft. Lauderdale Water Damage Restoration and
Miami water Damage Restoration Which are Certified IICRC Water damage and mold remediation contractors.
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