We get a lot of questions about mold/ mildew growth on the exterior of homes. Does this affect your home’s overall air quality? Should you be worried about mold making its way indoors? How do you go about removing mold and mildew growth on the outside of your home?
When you realize all of the health implications of mold and it shows up on your home, it’s easy to get nervous. Allow us to explain.
Mildew on the exterior of houses occurs on the shaded side. The direct sun inhibits the growth of mildew and molds. The presence of these exterior mildews and mold alone typically do not cause a health risk to the homeowner. However, houses that have mildew and molds on the exterior often also have other areas with moisture concerns. I have found mold in attics directly above the exterior walls with mildew growth. Crawl Spaces with mold that have vents located on the walls with mildew. These problems should most definitely be addressed quickly.
Very few houses are located on a hill with no trees and in a position that no mildew is likely, therefore when we see mildew it is often a wake up call. Our houses need ongoing maintenance to prevent, periodically clean the mildew and molds, or that we need to inspect deeper to make sure that we do not have any rot or air quality concerns. Most people do not enter their crawlspace and don’t know much about their air ducts, HVAC unit, or how their attic breathes. A good inspection can determine that the exterior mildew you see is not a larger concern, but just a cosmetic concern.
If you are certain that your crawl space and basement is dry, your HVAC is maintained, your air ducts are clean, and your attic is vented properly with no underlying rot or indoor mold problems then:
Clean the exterior of your house. There are many products for this at Home Depot and Lowes many that you can spray on and rinse of if the mildew is minimal, Most often you will need to agitate the cleaner with a brush and then rinse and repeat or pressure wash. If pressure washing, be careful not to push water under your siding or into the edges of the windows and doors, as this can make mold and mildew a very big concern, very fast. Roofing is dangerous to clean and best left to companies that specialize in roof cleaning and exterior pressure washing.
It can be dangerous to ignore exterior mildew. Mildew when ignored can turn into rot. Rot is mildew and mold digesting your wood. We have all seen wooden decks rot away and need to be rebuilt because cleaning and proper maintenance was not done.
Although much of the time exterior mildew is not creating an indoor air quality problem, it can be difficult to determine. If you are uncertain, consider hiring a reputable company for a mold inspection and air quality testing. Even if your problem turns out to not be a problem at all, your mold inspector can make suggestions to ensure high air quality throughout your home for years to come.
We believe that a mold inspection is a great way to weed out those problem areas as well as potential problems and safeguard your home against mold.
If you’d like to schedule a mold inspection, please click here or call (864)895-9500 to get started!