mold spores on walls

No one wants to see mold in their home, especially if someone in the house already has allergies or asthma. So why does mold always seem to crop up more easily in the summertime? Here’s everything you need to know about mold during an Indianapolis summer.

Answering Questions About the Ideal Mold Growth Conditions

Mold likes warm, damp conditions. Sounds like summer to us! Here are the specifics on what conditions might make mold spring up.

Does Humidity Cause Mold?

Humidity doesn’t cause mold, though it makes it easier for mold to grow. Mold can grow in any season. It grows best, however, when it has enough excess moisture to support expansion.

Hot air can hold more moisture than cold air (which is also why many homes would enjoy a well-maintained humidifier in Indianapolis winters). As humidity and temperature climb during summer, certain areas of your home may become more hospitable to mold. These include your attic, unfinished basement, bathroom, and kitchen.

At What Humidity Does Mold Grow Best?

The best humidity level for mold growth is above 60-70% relative humidity. However, it can grow just as easily with another source of water available. Whether that’s a leak or an AC set cold enough to cause condensation in your home, mold can take advantage of the excess moisture. 

Does Rain Make Mold Allergies Worse?

With more water in the air, a summer storm can increase ambient moisture to a mold and mildew humidity level. More water means more opportunities for mold growth, both inside and outside. This is why your mold allergies may seem worse after a storm. More intense symptoms can last for hours or even days.

Is Mold Worse in Summer or Winter?

Mold spores can grow in temperatures above freezing, ranging from 0 to over 200°F. Below freezing, their growth slows or stops, meaning that Indianapolis rarely sees outdoor mold growth in the wintertime. In summer, conditions are better for mold spores to take root. 

You’re more likely to see mold grow when the humidity and temperature start climbing.

Signs Your Home May Have Summer Mold

Mold may not always be easy to spot, but there are plenty of signs that you can keep an eye (or nose!) out for:

  • Your house smells like mold after rain. Rain exacerbates mold growth, so if you smell mold when it rains, you may have a colony somewhere that gets a boost with every storm. If you have mold allergies, your symptoms may worsen after a summer shower.
  • Parts of your home smell musty. The air circulating through your home may smell stale after a while, but mold has a stronger musty smell. If you notice that musty, damp smell in an area of your home, call the pros for mold remediation.
  • You see visible water damage. As we’ve said, leaks can lead to mold. If you see signs that your home has suffered water damage, mold could be growing out of sight behind the plaster.
  • You find patches of mold or mildew. This is, of course, the most obvious sign you have mold: You see mold! It may look like fuzzy white, black, or brown patches. Check for it under sinks and in damp, out-of-the-way corners.

How to Prevent Mold in Your House

The best way to prevent mold in your home is to eliminate sources of water in your home and keep rooms at a comfortable temperature. Block out the hot Indianapolis summer with home air conditioning. Many modern AC units also come with humidity control. Set your humidistat between 30 and 50% for a comfortable environment less conducive to mold.

How to Prevent Mold without Air Conditioning

Even without an air conditioner, there are three ways to reduce the likelihood of mold growth.

  1. Run a dehumidifier in the summer. You can install a whole-home unit or run an independent, standing dehumidifier.
  2. Fix any leaks in your home. Leaking pipes, faucets, or foundations provide the excess moisture mold thrives on. Eliminating leaks reduces the likelihood of mold, saves you money, and helps prevent future water damage.
  3. Ventilate your home. Exhaust fans, especially in damp areas like your bathroom and kitchen, help remove moist air from your home and vent it outside.

Deal with Summer Mold with Some Help from Indianapolis’ Pros

Mold growth can harm your family’s health, which is why it’s so important to get it removed promptly and professionally. If you even suspect you have mold, schedule an inspection with the pros at DRYMedic® of Indianapolis. We can find and remove mold even in hard-to-reach areas. Call us today at (317) 759-8432 to get started!