Common Types of Mold in Homes

Mold comes in all shapes, sizes and colors. Learn how to identify the type of mold in your home and develop a plan of attack for treating it.
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By: Caroline Shannon-Karasik

Like the colors in a box of crayons (but not nearly as fun), mold comes in a variety of hues, including black, white, green and orange.

The Biggest Threats to a Healthy Home

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Water Intrusion

Biological Contaminants

Mold

Dust and Respirable Particles

Toxic Chemical Compounds

VOCs

Formaldehyde

Carbon Monoxide and Other Combustion By-Products

Lead

Radon

Asbestos

Fire

Absence of AFCIs

Shorts and Shocks

Slip-and-Trip Zones

Pests and Pesticides

Photo By: Eric Isselée

The most common types of mold include aspergillus, cladosporium and stachybotrys atra (also known as black mold).

Aspergillus is a fairly allergenic mold that is commonly found on foods and in home air conditioning systems. Cladosporium is typically a black or green "pepper like" substance that grows on the back of toilets, painted surfaces and fiberglass air ducts. While this mold is nontoxic to humans, it can trigger common allergy symptoms, such as red and watery eyes, rashes and a sore throat.

Mold that appears to be orange or red in color is typically found outdoors, given its nature to thrive on decaying plants or moist wood. This type of mold, which can appear slimy, is harmless and should only be removed for aesthetic purposes.

White mold is not technically a type of mold, but the good news is that this typically indicates the mold is only in the early stages of growth and can easily be treated.

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