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Top 3 Things Mold Needs to Grow

What Does Mold Need to Grow?

According to Michael Pugliese, author of The Homeowner’s Guide to Mold, there are three main necessities that mold spores need to grow and thrive:

  • Moisture

Mold spores need moist or damp areas to grow and reproduce. Watch for flooding, leaky pipes or windows, etc. Also excess moisture in the bathrooms, kitchens, and laundry rooms are prime areas for mold growth.

  • Food

Mold spores need food – in the literal sense as well as other materials (i.e. cotton, leather, wood, paper products and others). The most dangerous materials mold loves to grow on, are porous materials (beds, couches etc). Its often impossible to remove mold growth from these items.

  • Optimum Temperatures

Mold spores thrive in temperatures 32 and 120 degrees Fahrenheit. Temperatures from about 70 – 90 degrees are the most conducive for mold growth. Chances of mold growth are heightened greatly between those temperatures. You may be wondering why mold can grow in your freezer. Mold doesn’t die when temperatures drop below 32 degrees, they lay dormant until temperatures raise, or they are set out to warm up.

Favorable Conditions for Mold

Michael Pugliese, author of the same book previously mentioned, also offers 5 tips describing favorable or unfavorable conditions for mold growth:

  • A relative Humidity of roughly 50% or higher

A good preventative measure would be to purchase a hygrometer to measure humidity levels in your home.

  • Damp or Dusty Conditions

Avoid developing piles of rags, clothing or other mold food sources.

  • Stagnant air

This explains why overly “tight” homes designed for energy efficiency can have mold problems.

Unfavorable Conditions for Mold

  • Ventilation

Good circulation throughout the home is important to eliminate dampness or potential moisture; especially in attics, basements, crawlspaces, laundry rooms.

  • Dry Air Indoors

Make sure to keep your home’s relative humidity down below 50%.

Further Recommended Reading:

Joslyn from the MoldBlogger Team

Source: Pugliese, Michael. “The Homeowner’s Guide to Mold.” 4-5.

17 Responses to “Top 3 Things Mold Needs to Grow”

  1. Though I’ve never had freezer mold problems in my kitchen fridge/freezer, I’ ve been thinking about getting a small non frost free/manual defrost chest freezer, and wonder if I should be concerned about storing anything in there for a long time. If I defrost it yearly and dry it and run it for a few days before restocking it, could there still be a chance of eventual mold growth?

  2. we are reaserching mould at school. and we need to know what mould needs for growth. thankyou for creatin this website. It is VERY helpful

  3. Within five minutes of my blog on an ear mold infection, a reader, who wrote me and e-mail. Said he was Dr. James Trogun from Toronto, Canada’s Doctor’s Clinic. Suggested i refrain and completely ELIMINATE these problematic trouble makers: SUGAR, YEAR AND WHEAT.

    Thanks you all
    ps If my e mail isn’t publicized, I know who read my blog and came aboard to help me. I will do it. Gordy at:
    art by gordy.com

  4. i nead help mold is growing in my finger nails and betwen my toes email me fo advice to get rid of it

  5. I am told that mold cannot grow on cement floor if carpets are installed over it. Is this true??

  6. we have what we thought is Mold in a bedroom cupboard

    we had it tested and it has high signs of yeast
    I have had coughs on and off for a year and a half now Very bad coughs and they have been treated by antibiotics

    but the antibiotics clear it up then it is back again
    I get nauseaus and very tired recently
    I have now gone to a Pulmonary specialist He asked lots of questions and also asked re acid which I do have but it does not really upset me, they did allergy tests also
    I gave the specialist the yeast results which was done in our home and asked could it be causing a problem for me he really just put it to one side and said he did not know how it could cause a problem but that is not what I understand re reading about Mold on the internet
    One of the allergy tests was for Aspergillius and it came up as not a problem
    so could the mold in my cupboard be causing a problem we have taken all my clothes out of the cupboard and washed them and sealed the cupboard with tape until we get it cleaned
    It is a rented home and the cupboard is beside the shower. If we get special cleaning stuff can we or the owner clean it or could the mold be in the wall which is an outside wall and would that mean the back wall which is an outside wall in the cupboard have to be chipped out
    Please let me know re Mold and my health and also does our wall have to be dug into or knocked down. my husband if it is a mold problem has no bad symptoms other than fatigue we are both in our 60’s
    any help appreciatted

    with thanks
    val

  7. it helped a bunch with my science fair project.

  8. antibiotics are made from molds.

  9. This helped my science project on mold alot!!!!!

  10. I have believed for 2 yrs that I have a parasite infection. Four dr shave told me I am in need of a psychiatrist. Could it be related to a mold infection? My entire ears have a black look to them, they are swollen with lumps. .Coming out of the ear canal is black and feels crunchy. When I use the hairdryer my body turns black colored. I am Caucasian with blue eyes. I used to have blond hair but am forced to shave my head. I have hyperhydrosis, I am always moist somewhere. I wear dentures after having 15 teeth pulled. I am hypothyroid a. I use hormone replacement, I am 59 and had a total hysterectomy 15 yrs ago.

  11. At last a site that spells it out clearly. Thanks for the article

  12. EWWW!

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