Mold is a fungus that grows on organic materials, such as wood and paper. It often starts out as a small spot of green or black fuzz, but it will begin to spread if not taken care of quickly. If you have mold growing in your basement walls you need to do something about it right away!
A mold outbreak can be a serious problem and should be dealt with as soon as possible. You should be aware that mold can release tiny spores into the air, which you may inhale. This means it is important to act fast in order to remove all of the molds before things get out of hand!
Causes Of Mildew And Mold Formation In A Basement Walls
Certain conditions can make it more likely for mold to form in your basement. Preventing the growth of molds requires that you prevent the conditions that allow them to grow in your basement. Here are some of the most common reasons why mold may form in a basement:
High Humidity Levels
If the humidity levels in your basement are particularly high, it’s likely that mold will form. You’ll want to first check for standing water or flooding as well as leaks around windows and doors. If you find these common causes of moisture problems then you can take steps to fix them right away!
Lack Of Ventilation
If your basement is not well ventilated, the warm and moist air will create an ideal environment for mold to grow. Make sure you have proper ventilation in your basement by installing a window or exhaust fan.
Poor Basement Waterproofing
If your basement has cracks or leaks, this can also lead to moisture build-up and subsequent mold growth. Make sure the walls are properly waterproofed and that all cracks or gaps around pipes, windows, and doors have been sealed.
Sump Pump Failure
Sump pump failure can lead to a flood in your basement, which will cause moisture problems and mold growth. Make sure the pump is working properly.
Floods can cause water damage, which can lead to mold. If your basement has ever flooded you should clean up the area as soon as possible and contact a professional waterproofing company for advice on how best to fix the problem. Make sure your basement is not exposed to any water leaks, flooding, or frequent flooding and that there isn’t a lot of standing water near the foundation wall.
Two Categories Of Molds
This type of mold is not harmful and won’t make you sick. It’s very common in homes because it uses dead organic matter as a food source, which can be found anywhere inside your house or outside on plants and trees. This mold only poses a risk when it’s disturbed and the spores become airborne, which can cause allergic reactions in some people.
The types of molds that will make you sick are pathogenic. Pathogenic molds are dangerous because they release spores into the air that can make you sick when you breathe them in or cause an allergic reaction if your skin comes into contact with them. These types of mold also produce mycotoxins which will weaken the immune system and make you sick.
Common Types Of Basement Mold
There are many types of molds, but only a few will infest your basement. The most common types are:
Cladosporium mold is dark green or black that occurs with high moisture and temperatures. This mold often grows on ceilings and walls. It produces large amounts of spores that can cause respiratory problems.
This mold is black, brown, or purple in color and has a musty odor. It occurs mostly on organic materials such as decaying vegetation, straw, wet wallpaper, and attic insulation that becomes damp from condensation or leaks like those around windows where there are water stains on the drywall ceiling below.
Aspergillus is a spore-forming mold that has an odor of musty or earthy. It can cause irritation to the eyes, nose, throat, and skin. It is one of the most common fungi found in homes. There are different types of Aspergillus, some of which can produce mycotoxins, that are toxic to humans and can cause immune system problems.
Fusarium is a yellowish mold and produces mycotoxins, that can cause a variety of respiratory problems, including hypersensitivity pneumonitis, asthma, and pulmonary edema. It is found in wet or damp environments with damp walls, flooded basement areas, and air vents of humidifiers. It can grow on a variety of materials, including paper, cardboard, wallboard, and textiles.
Also called black mold is a greenish-black fungus that grows on materials with high cellulose and low nitrogen content, such as fiberboard, gypsum board, paper, dust, and lint. It grows in very wet environments, such as those that occur after flooding from a leaking pipe or following excessive rainfall.
Black mold is the most serious type of mold. It can cause a number of health problems and should not be touched without protective gear on. If you spot black mold in your home seek medical attention immediately and contact a professional to clean up the area as soon as possible.
How to Clean Molds on Concrete Wall
There are ways to get rid of molds in your basement. But before you start, make sure that you fix the root problem that is causing the moisture and molds in the first place. Once you have taken care of that, you can try one of the following methods:
Vinegar is a natural cleaning product and it also kills mold. You will need to mix white vinegar with water in a spray bottle. Spray the solution on the moldy areas and let it sit for about 5 minutes. Then, wipe the area clean with a cloth or sponge. This works on both porous and non-porous surfaces.
Borax is another natural cleaner that can be used to get rid of mold. Mix Borax with water to make a paste, it is important that you mix it properly as it can be toxic if ingested. If mixed properly you don’t need to worry about this. Apply the solution to the moldy areas then wipe it clean with a scrub or sponge.
Grapefruit Seed Extract
Mix grapefruit seed extract with water and put it in a spray bottle. Spray the mixture onto moldy areas, let it stand for about 5 mins then wipe it clean with a sponge or cloth. The grapefruit seed extract is not just a mold killer, it is also a great disinfectant, it prevents mold from growing again and will also ensure that it does not spread to other parts of your home.
Tea Tree Oil
If you are looking for an all-natural way to get rid of mold, tea tree oil might be a good option for you. Tea tree oil is a natural fungicide and can kill mold spores. Add a few drops of tea tree oil to some water then spray it on the moldy areas.
Hydrogen peroxide is another natural cleaner that can be used to get rid of mold. It is non-toxic and non-irritating and it is safe for humans and pets. Mix hydrogen peroxide with water to make a solution. Spray the solution on the moldy areas then let it sit for a few minutes. Wipe it clean with a scrub or sponge.
Another way that you can get rid of mold is by using bleach; however, we do not recommend this method because bleach won’t kill the mold spores and it can be harmful to your health. It cannot be used on carpets or fabrics.
Concrobium is an EPA-registered mold remediation product that can be used to clean up moldy areas. It comes in a powder form and you just have to add water to it. Concrobium works by killing the mold spores and preventing them from growing. It can be expensive, less toxic than bleach but you still have to use it with care.
High-Efficiency Particle Absolute (HEPA) Vacuum Machines
Using a high-efficiency particle absolute (HEPA) vacuum machine is a good way to remove mold from your basement walls. It will also remove any spores that may be in the air. In high humidity areas, it’s a good idea to use a vacuum machine with a water filter to prevent the growth of more mold. Be sure to wear a mask when you’re using one of these machines because they can produce harmful particles.
Tip – always check the instructions manual when using it, as there are negative effects on some materials.
Call Professionals to Get Rid of Mold Outbreak in your Home
If your mold or mildew problem is minor, then a simple cleaning with a vacuum machine may have been enough.
These are characteristics that show if your home is having a mold outbreak:
- It is due to contaminated water
- There is an unusual musty smell
- Mold appears as black, green, or brown spots
- Covers greater than 10 square meters
- Keeps on coming back even after scrubbing it off
- Your foundation is infiltrated with it in ways you cannot see
- Within HVAC systems, mold may be found in the return air vents and diffusers
If you had a serious mold outbreak on your basement walls, then it’s best to call professionals to deal with the problem for you.
Basement Mold Removal – Conclusion
Mold can be a very dangerous substance if it is not treated properly. It can cause respiratory problems, skin irritation, etc. That is why it is important to take care of any mold problems as soon as they are noticed. If the problem is not taken care of, it will only get worse and could potentially cause extensive damage to your home.
Mold can grow on almost any surface, so it is important to be aware of the signs of a mold problem. If you do see any of these signs, take action right away and call a professional to remove the mold. Prevention is always the best solution, so be sure to keep your home clean and dry and make sure that all of your air vents are working properly.