The 2016 Homeowners Guide to Mold – Part 2
Let’s begin with a story:
My parent’s home burned down in 1950 before I was born, so my dad and grandfather built a new one. Our new home set on a river lot in rural West Virginia with all the amenities – natural gas furnace, cistern water and one indoor bathroom for a family of five.
Our home was built with cinderblock and had a pink stucco finish. The windows were single pane and the only insulation was in the attic. In the hot, humid summers we would open the windows and doors. During thunderstorms, we’d rush to close them…. hopefully before the house flooded.
The freezing winters were the worst. Our home was so drafty, our gas floor furnace could not keep up with the bitter cold that blew down the valley. One of my favorite pastimes was writing my name on the frost of my bedroom window and playing tic-tac-toe with my brothers. Whenever we ran out of frost, we would blow on the glass to make more and continue our games.
These were different times and mold growing in our homes was part of life.
Then came the oil embargo and tripling of energy costs in 1973. Homes had a dramatic change
– they became very, very tight: designed to have thick insulation in the walls, floors and ceilings, double and triple paned windows, energy efficient HVAC systems, caulking, weatherstripping and on and on to a point where our homes and buildings don’t “breathe” like they used to, causing dangerous mold concentrations to build up in the air
Why is mold more dangerous today? Mold is a bigger problem today because of these changes.