Although you might think that molds go to sleep during the winter, like most of the natural world during this season, they are actually more likely to invade your home at this time. Why? Well, due to large differences in outdoor and indoor temperature, condensation is a very common occurrence. All this moisture creates favourable conditions for molds to develop in the wet building material. Another problem is increased air humidity – windows are closed most of the time, which leads to poor air circulation and accumulation of humid air that comes from showering, cooking, and other home activities. This is the main reason why many homes in Toronto require mold inspections and mold removal throughout the winter.
What is Mold?
Mold is a term that includes various species of microscopic fungi that grow on different organic materials (food, cellulose, etc.). They are very adaptable and resilient creatures.
Molds have a very high reproductive potential and produce a large number of spores. The spores easily spread by air currents and can be found almost everywhere – from the Arctic to the Antarctic, in temperate areas, humid rainforests and hot, dry deserts.
How Does Mold Grow?
Once the spores land in a place with enough humidity and favourable temperatures (60-80 F) they will start to germinate and look for food. If there is organic matter around, the hyphae will grow and form a mycelium. The mycelium will later develop into a large fungal mass that we know as a mold colony. These colonies can remain hidden inside the walls, growing within the building material. For this reason, it is recommended to get a mold inspection in Toronto during the winter, especially if you live in an older building.
How to Prevent Mold in the Winter?
The combination of intense condensation and warm temperatures makes a perfect environment for molds to thrive. It can get very hard to avoid them in such conditions, but there are some steps we can take to prevent an infestation:
- Make sure your home is well-insulated - good insulation can reduce condensation significantly, and it also saves energy.
- Check your roof – any damage on the roof is a doorway through which mold spores and moisture can potentially get in.
- Regularly ventilate rooms like kitchens, bathrooms, basement and attics, as they are prone to high air humidity. It is also important to properly ventilate the room where you dry your clothes, as a single load of fresh laundry can release a couple of litres of water into the air.
- Clean accumulated condensation around windows with a dry cloth – this can be a time-consuming job if your home is badly insulated, but it will significantly reduce the occurrence of mold.
Sometimes molds will find a way to establish in spite of the best preventive efforts. Considering how harmful they can be both to human health and the structural integrity of the building, the safest way to deal with them is to act promptly and call a professional. If you are looking for a trusted mold removal company in Toronto, reach out to Inch by Inch Inspections.