Mold and Your HVAC System: What You Need to Know
Have you ever checked your HVAC system for mold growth? Rain and snowy weather can bring moisture into your home, and this can have an impact on your HVAC system because when you have moisture, mold can start to grow. This can also happen in the warmer months of the year when humidity is high and condensation can occur in your air ducts as cold air travels through. Instead of evaporating, the water will pool. As your HVAC system pulls in air from outside, dust and other airborne pollutants start to collect, all of which allows mold to grow and continue to multiply.
Even though mold is everywhere, it must be taken seriously because it can wreak havoc on your home and your health. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “Molds are fungi that can be found both indoors and outdoors. No one knows how many species of fungi exist, but estimates range from tens of thousands to perhaps 300,000 or more. Molds grow best in warm, damp and humid conditions and spread and reproduce by making spores. Mold spores can survive harsh environmental conditions, such as dry conditions, that do not support normal mold growth.” You can check out more facts about mold and its effects from the CDC.
To see if mold may be growing in your HVAC system, check for these four signs:
- You see mold growing in your air ducts, registers and drip pans
- You see pooling water or condensation on or inside your vents
- You smell mildew or mold inside your house
- You or your family members are developed any of these health-related issues: respiratory issues (related to your nose, mouth, sinuses and throat), coughing, sneezing, congestion, irritated eyes, skin rashes, headaches, nausea, dizziness or fatigue
If you think you may have mold growing in your HVAC system or you would like an inspection done, call Stiles Heating, Cooling, & Plumbing immediately to schedule an appointment with one of our HVAC technicians. If mold is found, we can’t stress enough the importance of having a professional remove it properly. We can remove it safely and can also clean your air ducts if needed. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) also offers these tips for mold cleanup in your home.
Follow these eight tips to prevent mold from occurring or returning to your HVAC system:
- Clean or replace your air filter every 30-90 days
- Clean your drip pans often, so water doesn’t collect in them
- Clean your home regularly
- Use a dehumidifier (and the air conditioner in warmer months) to reduce humidity in your home
- Fix any water leaks in your home
- Make sure your walls, attic and basement are well-insulated to reduce condensation
- Have your air ducts inspected and, if necessary, cleaned
- Have your HVAC system maintained twice a year
We take mold seriously at Stiles Heating, Cooling, & Plumbing. Contact us today with any concerns you have about mold growth in your HVAC system and to schedule a mold inspection. If mold is found, we will take the next steps to remove it safely from your home and will clean your air ducts if needed as well.