Mould in my Basement
Often it is a dank, musty smell that alerts a homeowner that there is something unhealthy going on in the basement! Moulds are a form of fungus that lives and grows both inside and outside and give off an earthy smell. The moulds that grow in the interior of your home can be a variety of colours ranging from white, green, grey, brown to black. As they represent a serious health risk, steps should be taken to get them professional removed from your home.
Not all stains you find on the walls or floor of your basement concrete are proof of moulds, you may have a salty deposit from moisture seeping through the masonry or mildew which is not as dangerous to the health of your family. While not as concerning, they do demonstrate that you have water or moisture causing problems in your foundation.
Mould that is white in colour can indicate that the fungus is just starting to grow. The colour may develop into other shades as the mould ages or remain the same. It is dependent on the type of fungus that has cropped up. The spores which help the fungus grow and spread can also disengage from the fungus and float in the air. It is this development that can cause respiratory problems or allergic reactions for some people.
Black mould is often considered toxic but actually it is that they are toxigenic which means they create toxins. The mould itself is not the problem but the spores that cause people to be ill especially those with respiratory weaknesses.
Like many things in nature, it depends on the specific form of the mould to determine how serious the risk to health but exposure to moulds over a period of time can cause people to suffer from a form of asthma, allergic fungal sinusitis, and other allergic bronchial illnesses. If a person already has an allergy, they may suffer from sinusitis, itchy eyes, headaches or fevers when exposed to moulds. Any kind of mould needs to be removed expertly. Professionals can determine what type of mould you have, how to get rid of it safely, and how to prevent it from growing again.
Moulds of any kind can be found on porous and nonporous surfaces in your basement. The cleaning processes are different, of course, and in some cases the mould cannot be removed from porous surfaces like carpeting, drywall or wallpaper. It can be necessary to completely remove the items where mould has latched and replace them. You have to be sure that all the mould has been eliminated to avoid having a reoccurrence of the problem.
If you want to make sure moulds don’t grow or spread in your home, you also need to keep unwanted water outside. Just as you will find fungi in the forest in the dark, moist areas, darkness and moisture help moulds grow and spread. Finding evidence of mould in your basement indicates you have water getting in somewhere. You need to have the experts at a basement waterproofing company such as City Wide Group to inspect and assess your foundation’s soundness.
Water may be getting into your basement through cracks caused by faulty construction, environmental conditions, or even the proximity of your landscaping to your home’s base. The gutters on your eavestrough may be clogged or weeping tiles may not be drawing water away from your home. All of these factors should be thoroughly checked to see where the problem lies.
Repairs to the foundation will help but should be followed up with a complete waterproofing project to provide you with the confidence that you won’t find nasty mould problems in your basement. You should definitely consider waterproofing your foundation if you plan to finish the basement to create a living or entertaining area. The City Wide Group has more than 55 years of experience in waterproofing basements in the Toronto area. Winner of 21 consecutive Consumer Choice Awards, our family-owned business prides itself in customer service.
Your home is your most important asset, providing you and your family a comfortable place to live and entertain. Make sure the foundation is dry and not the breeding ground for unhealthy moulds of any kind.