Your guide to identifying mold
It’s safe to say that nobody likes mold. There’s no fan club devoted to it, there are no hats or stickers bearing its name and if you asked the average person on the street what they thought of it, they’d likely answer with words we can’t print.
There’s no two ways about it – when it comes to the home, mold is a villain. And the unfortunate thing about it is that mold can get everywhere, from shower curtains to decks to – yes – even stone.
But how do you know that what you’re looking at is mold, and not some type of stain that requires regular surface cleaning? After all, mold comes in many colours and can simply appear to be any old stain.
This is extra important because you want to have the right cleaner for the right stain. How can you be sure this is a job for HANAFINN Sola-Kleena™, which specializes in removing mold stains, and not some other product?
Read on to find out.
Check the environment
It’s true that mold can grow practically anywhere under certain conditions, but there are places where it is more likely to appear than others. As the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) outlines, mold forms when tiny spores, imperceptible to the human eye, land on a wet surface. From here they grow and grow.
Therefore, you’re most likely to find it in areas that are damp and full of moisture. Likely suspects are bathrooms, kitchens, window sills and anywhere that might have experienced flooding or water leaks.
Sure, some stains smell bad, but mold tends to have a very unique odor, described by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as ‘musty’. In other words, if it smells like something’s off, it could well be your natural stone. It’s vital to get to work as soon as possible – as the CDC explains, being able to smell mold also means your health could be at risk.
I’m sensing a pattern
The physical appearance of mold is different from that of other stains. For one, it tends to coalesce in spots.
Sure, you might say, but what if I happened to have spilled some wine? Well, there are other physical characteristics – for example, as it grows, mold will typically become furry or hairy, which you can use a magnifying glass to spot. It can also be slimy, if it’s in the midst of growing.
How do I know it’s not efflorescence?
Dry mold tends to be powdery and can come in white – this can make it tough to distinguish from efflorescence, which natural stone can also suffer from.
The easiest way to tell the two apart is to spray a little water on the stuff, or pinch a bit off and drop it into the water. Efflorescence is water soluble, so it should disappear once this is done.
When you’re sure your stain is mold, you can give Dry-Treat a call and start the mold stain removal process.