Black Mold, known as Stachybotrys Chartarum, is a greenish-black fungus. This type of mold grows very well in materials that have a high cellulose content. In homes these materials include drywall, carpet, wallpaper, ceiling tiles, flooring and more. Water damage from flooding, pipe leaks or other sources combined with a dark and moist environment create optimal conditions that allow this mold and fungus to grow and flourish.
Not only is black fungus ugly, but it can also be dangerous. Exposure to mold spores can cause a variety of health problems, including lung and blood infections. If you suspect mold infestation anywhere in your home, you should try to have it completely removed as soon as possible. Once you have a mold problem. it’s common for fungus to spread to nearby areas, such as surrounding walls, carpets and ceilings.
Drywall, which is also known as plasterboard or gypsum board, are panels made of gypsum plaster that are pressed between two thick sheets of paper. Drywall is used in construction to make interior walls and ceilings. Sheets of drywall can be made from fiberglass rather than paper to prevent the growth of mold. Plasterboard that is exposed to water due to floods or plumbing leaks tend to become moldy and soft.
It’s a serious matter if mold gets in or behind any drywall. Black mold may appear where there is moisture or water damage. That’s easy to see. But it’s the mold growing in areas that are hidden that can cause an even bigger problem. It’s difficult to tell the level of contamination behind plasterboard without opening up and area for examination.
Removing mold from drywall can cause an entirely different set of problems. Any black fungus that exists below the surface of the drywall cannot be removed without actually cutting out part of the drywall.
Unfortunately, when walls are opened up, mold spores that may be hidden behind the drywall or on the studs beneath may be released into the air. Inhaling these spores can lead to health problems, including respiratory issues. Releasing the spores also puts them in motion and sets the stage for further contamination elsewhere in the home. Not only that, if the entire contaminated area is not quickly and completely cleaned, there’s a high risk that the mold will return in the future.
If there is more than just surface contamination on the drywall, that usually means an entire area of the wall must be removed and cleaned.
If an area larger than 10 square feet is contaminated by visible mold, it’s generally recommended that the mold be removed by a certified mold professional. Better to have the job done right than to risk greater contamination or future damage to your home and health.