Let’s take a look at why having a mouldy home is such a big problem and learn how non-invasive moisture testing can help you uncover the cause.
Mould is an insidious intruder that can silently take over your home, posing health risks for you and your family and causing damage to your property.
Mould thrives in damp, poorly ventilated spaces and can quickly spread if left unchecked. As a current or prospective homeowner, understanding the potential causes of mould and how to detect them is important to safeguard your health and your home.
A Mouldy Home - it’s not just unsightly.
Mould is a type of fungus that releases tiny spores into the air, which, when inhaled, can trigger a range of health issues such as respiratory problems, allergies, asthma, headaches, and even more severe conditions in people with weakened immune systems. Furthermore, mould can cause significant damage to building materials and soft furnishings, leading to costly repairs and structural issues.
Common causes of a mouldy home
The primary factor contributing to mould growth is excess moisture, which can come from a range of sources.
Water intrusion: Leaks in roofing materials, plumbing, or joinery can allow water to seep into your home, where it will soak into porous materials like wood, concrete, or plasterboard.
Poor ventilation: Inadequate airflow can lead to trapped moisture, creating a breeding ground for mould, especially in humid areas such as bathrooms, kitchens, and basements.
Condensation: When warm, moist air comes into contact with cold surfaces (e.g., windows and pipes), condensation occurs, providing the moisture mould needs to flourish. Single-glazed windows will often stream with condensation in winter when the outside temperature drops well below the temperature inside the home.
What to do if you have a mould home
If you have visible mould in your home, the first step is to clean it. Commercial products containing bleach work by killing the mould spores. You can also use a solution of white vinegar and water. Excessive mould may require professional removal.
However, this is just a temporary fix. Without identifying the source of the moisture that is causing mould to grow, it will soon return.
If mould develops because your home is inherently damp, making it warmer and drier will help. You could add insulation, close gaps around windows and doors, and ensure the home is aired regularly to reduce condensation. Dehumidifiers or positive-pressure ventilation systems will help extract air moisture. But if you are already doing all those things and mould is still growing, it could have a hidden source.
Get proactive with non-invasive moisture testing.
Non-invasive moisture testing is a reliable and effective way to identify hidden damp spots and pinpoint potential problem areas without causing damage to the building. At Innohome, we use the Moisture Testing Meter T660, a non-destructive moisture meter capable of detecting moisture up to 4cm below the surface of a solid object. We can also use thermal imaging, which detects moisture by the temperature differences that occur when things are damp. Our inspector, Kevin, is a certified IR thermographer.
Whether you have a mould problem in your current home or suspect there may be dampness in a property you intend to buy, Innohome can help you find the source. With his experience in the building and inspection industries, Kevin knows exactly where to look for problem areas and can identify the telltale signs of mould or dampness. These include:
- Mould stains or watermarks on ceilings and walls
- Damp marks on the floor or around the skirting
- Musty smells
- Rotting timber
If required, he can take a sample of the mould and send it to a lab for testing for you. With his broad knowledge of building construction, Kevin can also suggest repair and ongoing maintenance options.
Worried about mould in a house? Arrange your house inspection today.