Mold spores are literally as old as dirt. Check out Leviticus, Chapter 14 (written over 3,000 years ago) for mold remediation instructions. In recent years more people have become sensitive to mold. To some, mold can be toxic. Yet some people aren’t sensitive to mold at all. Today’s homes are better insulated and tighter. There’s more potential to trap the moisture that can promote biological growth.
At what point can mold become a threat?
Mold has been called “Mother Nature’s reclaiming process.” Mold spores are literally everywhere. A typical healthy house is host to tens of thousands of mold spores. The problem begins when mold spores find an environment where they can reproduce exponentially. Mold needs moisture to grow. Control the moisture and you can control mold growth. If good housekeeping keeps it in check, the problem is often easily cleaned up.
What if there appears to be mold in my air conditioning system?
It’s your air conditioning system’s job to ventilate your home. The ducts are designed to supply and return airflow to each room. If there is a mold infestation in your home, an increased amount of mold spores become present. Because the air conditioning system constantly recycles air throughout your home, it can become infected by the active mold culture. When this happens you’ll first notice mold on the registers.
In rare cases mold can be caused by the air conditioning system due to lack of maintenance, clogged or leaking drain pans, etc. These HVAC-related causes can usually be corrected by a qualified heating and air conditioning contractor.
What to Expect From Your Heating and Cooling Contractor
A well-trained air conditioning and heating contractor is your indoor air quality (IAQ) specialist when addressing heating, cooling, basic filtration, and ventilation in your home. But when it comes to air particle testing, taking mold samples, biological identification, mold remediation, or health issues, you should look to a specialist for help. These tests are outside the licensing and training of a typical air conditioning contractor.
Who should I contact if I have a serious mold issue?
There are a number of groups that can help put you in touch with a mold testing or remediation specialist. You can start by contacting one of the following organizations or visiting their websites:
International Association of Mold Remediation Specialists
P.O. Box 273
4750 Bryant Irvin Road
Fort Worth, TX 76132
Indoor Air Quality Association
12339 Carroll Avenue
Rockville, MD 20852
American Industrial Hygiene Association
2700 Prosperity Ave., Suite 250
Fairfax, VA 22031