Does Mold on Attic Sheathing Have to be eliminated?

Mold growing on the sheathing on your attic is a severe issue that shouldn’t be ignored. The existence of mold inside your house, even if it’s within an unused place like the loft, can cause health problems whether the mould spores are airborne or not. Cleaning the sheathing eliminates the mould and keeps it from producing spores.

Why Mold Grows

Mold usually triggers a pungent scent and may cause staining that may be black, brown, gray, white, white, yellow or green. The mould itself may have a cottony texture, but can even be velvety, leathery, or resemble dust or granules. Damage requires two things to grow: nutrients and moisture. Moisture in your attic typically comes from leaks or condensation. The nutrients are usually organic materials, like dust, dirt and the sheathing itself. As you can not remove all of the nutrients, you can stop mould growth by taking away the source of moisture. If the mould appears in localized patches, it is probably caused by flows from windows, plumbing, or roofs. In case you have mould covering large sections of sheathing all over the attic, then the offender is usually condensation brought on by humidity.

The Risks

Mold has to be removed from attic sheathing since the spores can result in serious health problems. The effects of mold exposure depend on your health and the amount of mold you are exposed to. Common symptoms of mold exposure include coughing, wheezing, and nasal and throat irritation or congestion. Individuals with asthma or allergies to mold may experience more serious symptoms, and those with weakened immune systems can develop bacterial respiratory diseases.

Removing the Problem

You can remove small quantities of mould covering 10 square feet or less of attic sheathing yourself, however, if the mold growth covers more than 10 square feet, you should contact a professional mold removal specialist. Before you begin cleaning the mold in the attic sheathing, wear protective gear like rubber gloves, safety goggles and an N95 or N100 respirator mask, and wear long sleeves and long pants. When you are finished cleaning, enclose anything you use to clean out the mould — like brushes or rags, and your clothes — at plastic bags prior to bringing them into the main levels of your home. Installing fans in your attic windows so that they blow outside helps decrease the airborne spores. Because wood is porous, it could be difficult to remove the mould stains from sheathing, but it is possible to kill the mould by cleaning the sheathing with bleach and water. Combine 1/2 cup chlorine bleach with 1 gallon of water and use a sponge or cleaning brush to clean the mould. Do not rinse or wipe the bleach solution in the sheathing following cleaning. Leave it to dry on the surface.

Prevent Future Mold Growth

To avoid future mold growth, remove the source of moisture causing it. If there is a leak from the roof, plumbing, or windows, then the mould will reappear if the water is still entering the attic. If the issue is indoor air that is too humid, reduce humidity from installing ventilation fans in kitchens and baths, and ensuring your clothes dryer vents outside your house and not to the attic. Install a dehumidifier to decrease the quantity of moisture from the atmosphere too.

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