Mold is a natural substance that can be found in the air both outdoors and inside your home or building. But coming across mold growth on your property is never good.
All mold spores need to form mold colonies is a moisture source and a food source. Once the spores encounter both, mold can start growing. Because of this, mold can grow inside of your home or building at any time.
Indoor mold is often found growing on walls and in high-level moisture areas like bathrooms and basements.
However, mold can also be found growing in other areas, including inside the HVAC system. Mold in air ducts is especially concerning because the system will spread mold spores throughout the property as the air is being circulated.
It can be tough to know if there is mold in air ducts because it is not out in the open like mold on walls. But there are still signs to look out for to tell if there is mold in air ducts.
Continue reading to learn more about how mold grows in air ducts, signs to look out for, and how to conduct air duct cleaning following mold growth.
How Does Mold Grow in Air Ducts?
Sometimes moisture will accumulate in the air ducts as water droplets instead of evaporating. This gives mold spores the moisture they need to form colonies. In such a situation, the spores will use things like dust, dead skin cells, and dirt as a food source.
What are Signs of Mold in Air Ducts?
When mold grows, it gives off a strong musty odor. You can notice the smell when your heater or air conditioner is running, and the smell will usually be stronger around the vent that contains the mold growth. As such, the odor will not necessarily be noticeable throughout the property but might be contained to a certain room. However, the smell can very well still be found in nearby areas and elsewhere in the building.
In the event mold in air ducts goes unaddressed for an extended period of time, the fungus will spread throughout the rest of the HVAC system. The musty odor can then be found everywhere around the home.
Allergy-like Symptoms and Sickness
One of the biggest concerns regarding mold growth is the negative effects it can have on whomever is exposed to it. Breathing in mold spores can cause some people to suffer from health problems. They can experience coughing, sneezing, nasal congestion, itchy eyes, skin irritation, breathing concerns, headaches, and other allergy-like symptoms. These problems will only worsen the longer one is exposed to mold.
That said, be wary of these symptoms. You may notice these are a problem only indoors or in a specific area of your home, which can indicate mold growth.
In more severe situations, mold exposure can cause people to suffer from nausea, fatigue, diarrhea, and more. People with pre-existing respiratory conditions experience worse symptoms from mold exposure, and individuals with a mold allergy will be more sensitive to the fungus.
Knowing this, if anyone in your property has inexplicably suffered from the aforementioned allergies or illnesses, do not use your HVAC system until it has been inspected and, if necessary, cleaned of mold.
In some cases, you can tell that there is mold in air ducts because the mold can be seen accumulating elsewhere. In particular, the fungus might be visible around the air ducts and on the vents.
Air moving through the vents can move mold spores around and push them toward the vents. This then presents mold with the opportunity to form on the vents in addition to inside the air ducts. Usually, the fungus will appear green, black, or white, so watch for patches of such colors on your vents.
How Do You Clean Mold from Air Ducts?
If you discover mold in air ducts, then it is imperative you remove the mold promptly. Failure to act in a timely manner gives mold more time to grow and spread, worsening the health issues it might cause. Knowing this, prioritize mold removal if you find mold.
Air duct cleaning for mold growth can be done using home remedies, such as saturated bleach. There are also mold removal products available for purchase you can use. However, mold removal is not always a job you should take on yourself.
By removing mold yourself, you willingly expose yourself to it, which can cause you to suffer from health concerns. Improper mold removal methods can also worsen the problem, spreading the mold growth and causing additional damage. Some cases of mold are simply too much for an unqualified person to handle.
Whether you feel unsafe or are unfit to conduct air duct cleaning yourself following a mold infestation, there are professional mold removal services available that can help.
Professional Mold Remediation Services
ServiceMaster Kwik Restore offers mold remediation services in Cary, IL, and the neighboring areas to help properties that need mold removal help. No matter the extent of the mold growth, our professional technicians are prepared to remove the fungus and restore the affected areas. That said, we can provide air duct cleaning if your HVAC system is the site of the mold infestation.
Our mold professionals have the knowledge, equipment, and products to conduct safe and effective mold remediation services. With our help, your HVAC system will be free of mold, providing you with clean breathing air.