Mold vs. Mildew

Mold and mildew are definitely fungus brothers, but they do have a few striking differences. Learn more about the ins and outs of the two with this guide.
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A detail shot of the corner of the room with mold spots.

By: Caroline Shannon-Karasik

Create a Safe, Clean Home for Your Family

Focus on mold prevention and indoor air quality to keep your home healthy and comfortable.

Like two siblings who have similar features, mold and mildew have a few matching characteristics: Both are keen on moist, warm areas where they might sprout their homes. They can also each grow on a multitude of surfaces, from food to your shower to a sheet of paper. And, of course, they are both two types of fungi that no homeowner likes to see in his or her home.

But mold and mildew also have striking differences when it comes to size, color and texture.

Mildew is a surface fungi that can easily be identified as a patch of gray or even white fungus that is lying on the surface of a moist area. Mildew is easily treated with a store bought cleaner and a scrubbing brush.

Mold, on the other hand, can be black or green and is often the result of a much larger infestation. This type of fungus can appear almost "fuzzy" — especially when it is found on food — or even slimy in nature.

While toxic mold is not common in homes that are regularly maintained, this form of mold can be dangerous to a person's health. Allergies, asthma, irritated eyes, headaches and even lung issues are the result of toxic mold that is breeding within a home.

The key to treating mold and mildew is to wipe it out of your home immediately. Treating it accordingly will safeguard your home from permanent damage and keep you from doing the tango with nasty fungi in the future.

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