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A Visual Guide to Mold: Common Types and Their Appearances

mold type in cooling coil

Mold spores are everywhere, whether you’re outdoors or in the comfort of your home. As a homeowner, it is important that you know and understand which types of mold are dangerous and pose a health risk. If you’re experiencing consistent respiratory issues, it could be a sign of mold growth within your home.

There are plenty of types of mold that you should be looking for; most of these are easy to identify visually. So, let’s break them down.

The Importance of Identifying Mold in Your Home

The US Environmental Protection Agency and every health organization warns the public that no one should be exposed to mold for a long time. Allergic reactions are the most common health problems many people experience. It is also the most obvious sign of mold growth in your home. When you touch or inhale mold, it can later on cause allergic reactions, respiratory problems, and hay fever-type symptoms.

If you so much as suspect that your home has mold growth, it is crucial to call the professionals to properly remove it immediately. Trained professionals like those in R&E Home Solutions inform our customers of the different types of molds they need to be aware of and how to prevent their growth.

Also, mold growth can cause mild to severe damage to your home. As it grows and spreads throughout your home, it can weaken your home’s structure, foundation, and furniture. So, early prevention is key!

Mold: 10 Common Types and Their Appearances

Mold types and strains come in the thousands, so it’s hard to pinpoint what each one looks like. But there is only so much homeowners can identify. So, we’ve narrowed them down to the top 10 common types you can find in your homes.

When  identifying molds, we first need to take into consideration the three major kinds of mold and how they affect us:

Allergenic Mold

Allergenic molds are the most common type with a low threat rating. Despite being non-toxic, it will cause mild allergic reactions. Some reactions are skin rashes, eye irritation, sneezing, throat irritation, asthma, and more.

Pathogenic Mold

Pathogenic molds are uncommon and can pose a moderate threat. It can cause an infection to any individual when they inhale or come into contact with the mold. Children and the elderly are more at risk when infected by these types. Common symptoms are moderate to severe allergic reactions, lung infection, shortness of breath, and heavy coughing.

Toxigenic Mold

Toxigenic molds are a rare type of mold that can cause severe health problems. These mold types need immediate and professional remediation because of their harsh effects on humans and animals. Respiratory failure is one of the worst-case scenarios when in contact with this type of mold.

It is important to realize that some allergenic mold strains are also pathogenic or toxigenic. Nonetheless, as soon as you think mold growth is possible, call the professionals for a mold removal service.

mold type and growth in bathroom wall and ceiling

Top 10 Types of Mold in Your Home

1. Acremonium

This mold is usually found in highly wet places such as window sealants, drainpipes, humidifiers, or cooling coils. This moist and powdery-textured mold can be pink, orange, gray, or white. It can cause bone marrow complications, hay fever, asthma, and other infections.

2. Alternaria

Alternaria is in damp areas such as showers, damp windows, shower doors/curtains, and bathroom walls or ceilings. This woolly dark brown or black texture is an allergenic. Allergic reactions and hay fever are common symptoms.

3. Aspergillus – the majority of them

There are multiple strains of Aspergillus, most of which are in your home and are health hazards. Normally found in expired food, HVAC systems, decaying plants, and damp walls or surfaces. This fluffy/fuzzy textured mold may be white, green, yellow, brown, or black. It may cause allergic reactions and lung infections. This type of mold is critical to individuals with chronic lung infections.

4. Chaetomium

Chaetomium starts as a white cotton-like mold before turning into a blue-gray or olive powdery substance. These airborne mold spores are usually in water-damaged drywall, ceiling, wood, decomposing plants, or expired food. In addition, it can cause some illnesses like respiratory infections, nail or skin infections, and sometimes autoimmune diseases.

5. Cladosporium

Another common mold type is the Cladosporium normally grows in carpets, foundation walls, ceilings, wooden surfaces, and HVAC ducts. This olive, brown, or black mold has a velvety texture that settles in places that trap moisture. Some of the common symptoms are dry skin, rashes, coughing, eye irritation, and sinus problems.

6. Fusarium

Fusarium easily spreads from room to room and is considered to be a serious mold causing severe health problems. It is both an allergenic and toxigenic type of mold. Continuous exposure to this mold type may cause dermatitis, sore throat, or runny nose. It can also cause fatal conditions such as bone infection or damage to the nervous system. This white, pink, or reddish cotton-like mold is usually on carpets, fabric, upholstery, wallpaper, and wood.

7. Mucor

Mucor is another allergenic mold type typically found in dust, carpets, upholstery, and mattresses. This white, gray, or yellow cottony mold can cause low-risk allergic reactions. However, if you have a weak immune system, it can worsen your symptoms, which can cause pulmonary or gastrointestinal infections.

8. Penicillium

Penicillium is another common airborne mold that is found inside the house. This mold is usually on wood, textiles, upholstery, mattresses, decaying plants, or rotten food. You can easily spot it because it’s blue or green with a velvety or fuzzy texture. It can cause and trigger allergic reactions, sinus infections, and asthma.

9. Stachybotrys (Black Mold)

Stachybotrys, also known as black mold, is highly toxic. It grows in damp places such as the bathroom ceiling, carpets, laundry rooms, air ducts, and ventilation systems. It is also one of the easiest molds to see because of its black or dark green appearance, which is typically wet and slimy. Prolonged exposure may cause severe pain, extreme fatigue, and even possible issues within your central nervous system.

10. Ulocladium

As an allergenic, Ulocladium thrives in damp and condensation-prone areas. You can find this mold type in shower rooms, bathtubs, windows, dishwashers, front load, refrigerators, and more. It has a dark brown, almost black color with a cotton woolly or fuzzy texture. Exposure to this mold can trigger allergic reactions like asthma, itchy eyes, hay fever, and runny nose.

Thousands of different molds may reside in your home, but these ten common types are typically the most present and sometimes recurring. Learning about the various types and their appearances will help you identify what’s going on in your home and how that directly affects your health.

What to Do If You Find Mold in Your Home

Upon identification, what is the next step? Call the professionals. It’s true that some of these mold, especially allergenic types, can be dealt with by yourself. But some mold types like to stick together. For instance, Ulocladium is typically found with other mold types like Stachybotrys, Fusarium, and Chaetomium. This formation can effectively increase their potency and possible health and home damage.

You must seek immediate professional help when you identify these types of mold lurking around your home, especially in damp areas. Professionals can easily provide various services like mold inspection & testing, mold remediation, and removal. They’ll effortlessly have your home back in top shape. These professionals also have easy access to industry-grade equipment and cleaning products created to target and effectively remove mold altogether. You can also get tips on how often you need to clean your home, what things you should avoid to prevent mold growth again, and what regular maintenance you should keep up with.

bathroom wall and ceiling after mold remediation and removal

R&E Home Solutions fully grasps the risks of mold infestations and growth within a home, whether outdoors or indoors. Our team of experts has extensive experience and knowledge in handling mold removal and remediation. Our home-based solutions are proven to remove mold effectively and offer long-term solutions to keep your home safe. Get an affordable quotation by contacting us at 843 886-1683 for more details.

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