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What Does Mold Smell Like?

Almost everyone has walked into an old house or opened an old book and been hit with a terrible smell. A comparison of things smelling this way would be an infestation. The odor is musty and immediately identifiable. Those in the house or opening the book wonder at the origin of the smell. The smell of mold is a little different. What are some facts about mold?

Is The Smell Of Mold Harmful?

Mold spores are everywhere. They live in damp conditions. They’re carried on the wind and on our clothing and shoes. When we open our windows at home, we invite the spores indoors. Is the smell harmful?

Those not susceptible to allergy symptoms, asthma, COPD, or other lung conditions aren’t generally bothered by mold or its smell. For the most part, these just get watery eyes, sneezing, coughing, and their bodies itch.

However, if you have trouble breathing, then you’ve got a problem. In severe cases, those with mold in their homes have been hospitalized. Their chests close up, and they can only breathe shallowly. Apparently, mold has an affinity for weak lungs and compromised immune systems.

Add to this the fact that mold spores build up in lung tissues weakened by lung diseases like tuberculosis or emphysema. They join with white blood cells and blood clots to form a lump called aspergilloma. If you suspect you have mold, you’d have a good idea if you were to get a complete and thorough lung workup.

What Are Signs Of Mold In Your House?

removing of mold from room wall with metal brush

Mold grows beneath and behind things like baseboard trim and wallpaper, so you won’t see it. If spots appear on your wood, though, then you have mold. Other indications are:


Mold smells like a forest floor: earthy, leafy decay, wood rotting, and musty. The compounds this smell releases into the air contaminates your home’s air quality. This directly impacts your health, so have it checked out immediately.

Visual Signs

When you see spots in moist areas like bathrooms, they could appear in a dozen colors such as green, yellow, brown, purple, and black. Mold also grows on furnishings, clothes in closets, and on toys in toy boxes, so it isn’t just bathrooms or laundry rooms at fault. If these spots appear, then your house is susceptible to worse forms of mold such as black mold and toxic mold. Get it checked out immediately.

Or attic ceiling spots may be a sign of a roof leak that is creating mold issues.

Water Signs

Condensation on windows and mirrors, water damage spots on ceilings and walls, as well as leaks causing buckled or bowed walls mean the conditions are right for mold to form. Before it spreads or gets worse, call a mold remediation team immediately.

Allergy Symptoms And/Or Breathing Problems

Do you breathe perfectly well in any other room than, say, the bathroom? Do you present with allergy symptoms like itching, watery eyes, and coughing in only one room of the house? If you can’t breathe or your asthma worsens in just one room of the house, then you have mold. Get it checked out before the illnesses get worse.

If You Smell Mold, Have Your Air Quality Professionally Tested

Almost everyone works inside a building. Even outdoor workers spend time indoors clocking in before they go outside to work. Then we go home to spend more time indoors. We spend time in the grocery store, shoe store, restaurant, hair salon, tire or car care center, the gym, and church.

The quality of the air in these enclosed areas is vital to our health. Can’t sleep well or at all? You might need your indoor air quality tested. Are you feeling nauseous or vomiting? Test your indoor air quality. Perhaps you’re off your food or losing weight. Get your indoor air quality tested. A few other health effects of bad indoor air quality due to mold are:

  • Allergy symptoms (coughing, wheezing, sneezing, watery eyes)
  • Headaches
  • Asthma or upper respiratory problems
  • Dizziness or lightheadedness
  • Fatigue

Having your indoor air quality professionally tested would be a good idea if you suffered from:

  • Nose bleeds
  • Conjunctivitis (eye problem)
  • Headache, fever, and chills
  • Muscle pain
  • Loss of hearing

Indoor air quality touches every aspect of our health and our lives. You owe yourself peak good health. Have your indoor air quality tested today.

Difference Between Mold And A Musty Smell

We’ve all opened the door of the summer cottage, anticipating a relaxing, fun summer. We enter the cottage only to smell the closed up smell of a house with no air circulation, dusty and musty.

We’ve also taken a trip to see Grandma only to walk through the door to a smell of no air circulation, stale cooking smells, and a metallic-medicine odor. It’s a slightly different smell, but musty all the same.

Musty is about still, dead air. It’s about closed off with no fresh air circulation. It’s about certain things hanging in the air like cooking smells, some illnesses, and dust. It can usually be cured with open windows, and cleaning.

A moldy smell is different. Mold is a fungus that has to feed on something. In the outdoors, the fungus feeds on trees and dead leaves. Mold feeds on the same wood indoors, as well as wallpaper and paint, the fabric on furnishings and clothes, and carpets or other flooring.

The smell is the same earthy, woodsy smell. The smell comes partly from the particulates, gasses, and chemicals resulting from the breakdown of the materials on which the mold is feeding. This is also contaminating your indoor air quality.

The other part of a moldy smell is dampness. Water that seeps into wood walls, floors, carpets, and even concrete basement floors had no chance to evaporate when these things became wet. This is why it’s essential to maintain the proper humidity and air flow in a house. When the material stays wet, it has a certain smell.

Add that wet smell to the breakdown of materials smell, and you have the basis of mold. The wet smell has to come first before the mold spores can cause the destruction of the material on which they’re growing.

What Does Mold Smell Like? Testing Your Air Quality For Mold
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What Does Mold Smell Like? Testing Your Air Quality For Mold
Do you need a mold inspection or air quality test? If your asking what does mold smell like you should consider a professional. Mold smells funky but can be mistaken for mildew...
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Long Island Mold Removal And Water Damage Restoration
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