Tucson News Channel 4 reported in an online news article that the 2017 monsoon rain season marks the fourth year of rainfall that exceeds the average. More rain in a desert climate can help spawn additional mold growth that would not otherwise have been a problem in a drier season. Take a look at how mold establishes, how it grows, and the best way to control it.
The Moldy Triad
There are numerous fungal strains that begin to grow in your home. Most are harmless, but some are not. All mold needs three things to proliferate. Though cheese can get moldy in your refrigerator, mold thrives when there is heat. Phoenix has plenty of heat. The second thing needed is moisture, and the monsoon rains are helping with that. The third thing mold needs to grow is food, and that is anything organic from a cardboard box to the wood framing or subflooring of your home. Mold can eat into wood, weakening it and turning it into a crumbling mess.
Mold Is Quiet
Unlike a pesky rodent you would hear chewing on things inside the walls of your house, mold is silent. It hides well too. You need to look into the crevices, the nooks and the crannies to find it. The spores are naturally everywhere, but not all mold is in an active growing stage. It depends on the factors of heat, moisture and food. Mold can quietly rot away wall surfaces, cabinetry, subfloors, door frames, sill plates, garden sheds and more over long periods of time.
The Water Trigger
It is easy to recognize mold damage caused by flooding. A broken pipe or an overflowing creek bank during the monsoon season can bring water into your outbuilding, garage or even your home. Mold can literally establish itself to the point of blatant odor and visibility within hours of the flood water receding or being pumped out. However, tiny leaks can also bring devastating mold damage. A garbage disposal that only drips periodically can ruin a cabinet and the subfloor beneath it. A dripping drain pipe from a bathtub or shower can do the same. You may not see the evidence until structural members are so compromised they fail. Even though the damage was from a slow leak, it still follows the same process of flood damage, and it needs the same cleanup and restoration.
If you notice anything that seems to be related to mold in your home, you should call for expert advice on how to fix the problem. Staining, crumbly wood surfaces, ripples in plywood surfaces, odor, peeling paint, damp areas and more are signs of mold troubles. All of them can be easily fixed to prevent further structural damage and loss. Keep in mind that mold grows fast, so getting rid of it faster should be the goal.