At times, we’ve all wondered how to get rid of mildew that is found in our showers as well as any area where moisture levels are high.
But is what you see mold or mildew? How do you tell the difference between the two, seeing that they are both fungi? Which of the two should cause you more apprehension when you see it in your home?
Mold and Mildew – subtle differences
Mold and mildew have a few similar characteristics in that they both thrive in warm, moist areas. Both of them can grow on quite a few different surfaces, such as walls and even food. They also have a few differences when it comes to color and texture.
Mildew is actually a kind of mold. It has flat growth that remains on the surface of a moist area and it can be easily removed. Mold, on the other hand, grows on food but it can also grow on walls. It’s not easy to remove.
Kansas City water damage repair recognizes the different colors and shapes of the two fungi and Servpro in Kansas knows that while mildew can be easily removed by the home- or business owner, mold is a different story. Specialized mold remediation experts and equipment will work together to take on mold in its irregular-shaped spots, and destroy it once and for all.
Mold – some forms more dangerous than others
Mildew is a plant disease, and when you find it on your plants, it is powdery. You get a powdery mildew and also a downy mildew. Downy starts off as yellow spots but it becomes brown.
Mold also comes in different types but it is the Stachybotrys chartarum mold that you should be particularly wary of. It is also known as black mold and it is the most dangerous as it can cause severe health problems.
Certainly, there are people who are more sensitive to mold spores than others, and they can develop health problems just by inhaling a small number of spores.
Get to the root of the moisture problem
Both mold and mildew are troublesome. Depending on how they’ve spread, both may need to be treated as soon as possible by the best mold removal companies. Mildew usually affects plants, but it can sometimes also develop indoors and comes with certain health risks as well.
It is as if mold is stronger and more clinging. In fact, it is so clingy that it can actually cause structural damage to a wall. The thing is, you need to prevent the spread of mold by removing it but also fixing the source of moisture that is causing the mold.
Depending on the strain of mold it is, it can also bring on a host of serious health issues such as respiratory problems. The mycotoxins from black mold are so severe as to leave a person with long term health effects, more so with people who have weak immune systems.
Even the smell can be hazardous
Mold and mildew both produce gases and this can have a musty, dirty smell. These gases are referred to as microbial volatile organic compounds, Sometimes, if you enter an old place, you can actually smell the mold before you even see it. When you smell mold like this, it means that its spores are in the air, and this is hazardous.
To prevent these two fungi from invading your home, you have to keep surfaces dry and moisture-free. If you have any kinds of leaks in the kitchen or bathroom, have them fixed and only leave perishable foods in your refrigerator for a couple of days.
Steps to treat mold and mildew
Mildew is a surface fungus and there are a number of regular commercial cleaners that, together with a scrubbing brush, can efficiently remove mildew. It is always best to don rubber gloves when working with mildew and cleaning agents.
Mold isn’t so easy to tackle as it attaches to a wall. It has microscopic filaments that penetrate beneath the surface of a wall and can affect large areas.
Not only can the mold result in permanent damage, but it can have a very negative effect on your health, as already mentioned. The only real way to get rid of mold is to call in a professional mold removal company.