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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Mold or Mildew: How To Tell Which Is Which

5/23/2019 (Permalink)

Mildew growth likes to show up in a lot of the same places that mold might inhabit

Mold or Mildew?

There is a common misconception that mildew and mold damage are the same. However, these terms should not be used interchangeably. Mildew, while still a fungus, is mold's gentler fungal cousin, easier to be rid of and less dangerous when exposed to it. While only professional tests should be used to determine which fungus you may be dealing with, there are some notable differences:

1. Location

Mildew growth likes to show up in a lot of the same places that mold might inhabit. For instance, you may find either one in the bathroom, basement, garage, attic or any other warm, humid areas. Mold spores, however, attach themselves deep inside of porous surfaces and then colonize in as little as 48 hours.

2. Color

Mold grows in gradients of color, from black to yellow to green. Mildew, however, is typically found in shades of gray or white.

3. Odor and Appearance

Mold growth is identified by its dank odor as well as its 3-dimensional appearance on surfaces. It is fluffy and chalky. On the other hand, mildew will appear as a powdery substance or a stain, depending on the location.

4. Removal

Unlike mildew, mold damage is difficult to remove, more resilient to available commercial cleaners and should only be treated by professionals. Since mildew mainly develops on surfaces, it is easier to clean and eliminate. Many commercial cleaners can be purchased in most big box stores that should do an excellent job of removing the mildew problem.

If you fear that you have a mold problem, then call a mold remediation specialist in the Bronxville, NY, area to have your home tested. Professional tests are one of the most reliable ways to identify the fungal problem in your home.

While there may be similarities in mildew and mold damage, they are very different, requiring different tools and cleaners to eliminate colonies. Therefore, it is best to have your home tested by a professional to determine the nature of the fungus.

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