We have compiled a list of ten common places mold grows. Mold can grow just about anywhere there is oxygen, organic material and moisture. A few common places meet these criteria in a building, and mold can often be found growing there. Here are ten of them.

  1. Crawl spaces are especially problematic. Conventional wisdom says if you have proper ventilation in your crawl space, mold shouldn’t be a problem. However, the ventilation around your crawl space often draws air into the space and up into your home like a chimney, taking mold spores with it. Crawl space encapsulation is the best remedy.
  2. Carpet, and the padding below, are breeding grounds for mold when they get wet. If your carpet gets wet, it must be dried quickly. The EPA recommends that wet carpet and padding should be completely dry within 24-48 hours to avoid mold growth. Often this means removing the carpet and reinstalling it after it is dry.
  3. Behind walls, paneling, and wallpaper. Mold doesn’t need sunlight to grow, like plants do, so it grows in hidden places well. If enough moisture and food is provided, it will grow, often undetected.
  4. Bathrooms can be like petri dishes for mold if they do not have an opportunity to dry out between hot showers. The steam from a hot shower sticks to the wall and without proper ventilation, it will feed the growth of mold.
  5. Laundry rooms, with their constant exposure to water and damp clothing, can lead to mold growth.
  6. Basements are high on the list of places you are likely to find mold. Frequently basements are not sealed properly and the moisture from the wet ground surrounded the building seeps into the walls. Sometimes a downspout from the gutter system empties rainwater right next to the house causing the area behind the finished wall to become damp, sometimes going years without detection.
  7. HVAC ducts, or air conditioning and heating ducts, if not insulated properly can retain moisture and become a breading ground for mold. After the mold grows, it is then spread throughout your house when the blower is turned on.
  8. Any place you have experienced a water leak is a good place to look for mold.
  9. Under damaged roof tiles. After a storm or strong winds, roofing tiles can become dislodged or damaged. If water gets underneath and cannot dry out, mold is likely to grow and can possibly damage the structural integrity of the home if not removed.
  10. Near a clogged gutter. Water from a clogged gutter on your home can overflow and keep moisture on the eaves. The wood will begin to mold and then rot as the mold eats away at your house.