Exposure to indoor, air-borne fungi from moisture-damaged homes and buildings can result in many adverse health issues.
Often, these types of spores are found in indoor air quality and may have originated outside the home. Outside habitats include trees, soil, and grasses and can be transferred inside by our shoes. Alternaria is hard to see and can also be found in carpets, wallpaper, textiles, window frames and air conditioning systems.
Aspergillus are known to be common in homes and public buildings and the spores are found in the air we breathe. Aspergillus is often found in heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems, though it can be found in other places, too. If you have Aspergillus mold in your home or environment, the increased number of airborne spores can lead to negative health symptoms. Three common types of this mold are: Aspergillus niger, Aspergillus flavus, Aspergillus fumigatus.
Aureobasidium mold is commonly found on wooden surfaces, painted walls and wallpaper. It grows in highly moist, damp, and humid areas and can also be found in window frames, caulking, textiles and air conditioning units. Usually, it presents as a cream, pink, brown or black color however the longer it ages, the darker the color. It reproduces and spreads by releasing spores into the air, which then travel to other places where they can establish new colonies.
Commonly found in water-damaged homes and buildings, Chaetomium has a cotton-like texture and usually changes colors from white to grey to brown and eventually to black over time. Chaetomium mold is usually found in a damp or leaking roof, basements or in damaged drywall caused by leaks or moisture. You may notice an unpleasant musty odor associated with Chaetomium spores so being aware of moisture and pipe leaks in your home will help prevent this type of mold growth.
Cladosporium mold is known to grow within both cool and warm areas. It can be found in such areas inside your home as your carpet, fabrics, under wood floorboards and inside wooden cabinets. The color is a dark or olive green.
Often pink, white or reddish in color, fusarium is a mold that can grow in colder temperatures. It thrives in homes with water damage and is found in wallpaper and fabrics. Outside it is found in composts and on food products. It can quickly spread from room to room so if found it may not be confined to just that one area.
Penicillium, called the blue or green mold (depending on the species), is a mold that can found indoors inside such home furnishings like upholstered furniture, wallpaper, old mattresses and carpet. As long It is very prevalent in basements that are damp and found in books, boxes and wood. Penicillium is known for spreading easily and becoming air borne which can be inhaled by all home occupants including pets.
Stachysbotrys chartarum is a blackish-green color. It feeds in a high cellulose environment which means it grows in wood, cotton and paper products. Water damage and water leaks, condensation or flooding promote its growth. This type of mold needs constant moisture to feed and flourish. This type is also known as toxic mold because this type of mold creates toxic compounds known as mycotoxins. These chemicals can be found in the spores and small fungus fragments released into the air.
Serpula lacrymans mold grows on wooden surfaces and is the cause of dry rot of wood. Most found in water damaged buildings, it can cause extensive structural damage. It’s most noticeable by its yellow-brownish appearance.
Trichoderma is another mold that grows and feeds in damp and moist areas. Colors range from white to blue-green or yellowish-green. This can be found in water-soaked wood, wallpaper, paint, air conditioning filters and carpets. It is possible to enter your home through airs vents, windows, doors and HVAC systems. By attaching itself to shoes and pets, it can be brought inside the home easily.
Ulocladium is typically found in bathrooms, kitchens, basements and around windows. This is a good indicator of indoor moisture problems. Another cause to see this type of mold growth is in a home with severe water damage such as storms or floods.