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A bit about Mold

MoldWhy is mold growing in my home?

Molds are part of the natural environment. Outdoors, molds play a part in nature by breaking down dead organic matter such as fallen leaves and dead trees, but indoors, mold growth should be avoided. Molds reproduce by means of tiny spores; the spores are invisible to the naked eye and float through outdoor and indoor air. Mold may begin growing indoors when mold spores land on surfaces that are wet. There are many types of mold, and none of them will grow without water or moisture. (more…)

Wood Fungus Damage

wood fungusDry rot is caused by a fungus

Dry rot is a weakening of wood caused by one of several species of fungus. The fungus digests the parts of the wood that give the wood strength and stiffness. Weakened wood is typically somewhat dry, hence the name dry rot, and brittle.

Ironically, dry rot usually results from too much moisture in contact with wood. The dry rot fungus has the unusual ability to transport water from wet areas to dry areas allowing the fungus to grow even in relatively dry wood. If not stopped the dry rot fungus will so weaken wood that it may eventually disintegrate.

Wood Fungus Spores

Fungus Spore's

The beginning stage of Wood fungus Spores

Indicates excessive moisture or insufficient ventilation

Crawl Space Ventilation

Crawl Space VentilationWhat is the reasoning behind crawl space ventilation you ask?  Try this. take a clear piece of plastic and place it over what appears to be very dry ground in your yard. Put some boards around the edges to weight down the plastic so no air gets under the large plastic sheet. If you can do this on a sunny day you will get almost instantaneous results.

Within minutes you start to see a slight fog develop on the underside of the plastic. Wait longer and the fog will turn to water droplets. The soil around your house and inside of crawl spaces is constantly liberating water vapor. Sunlight, wind and natural evaporation pull this moisture from the ground. (more…)

Organisms of Destruction

FungusFungus (fungi, plural) is a plant that lacks chlorophyll. Unable to synthesize their own food, they feed off of cells in the wood. The fungi secrete enzymes that break down to wood (into usable food) and can significantly reduce the strength of the wood. It is estimated that Wood-Decay Fungi (found throughout the United States) causes as much, if not more, damage to homes as termites. While the average moisture content of wood is between 13-17 percent, fungus generally occurs when the wood moisture content exceeds 20 percent, coupled with mild temperatures. (more…)