Let’s get right to it. It is unlikely that there is black toxic mold in your air vents. While you may have discovered some unsightly growth in your system, the dangerous Stachybotrys chartarum, or black toxic mold, is less common than other types of mold that pop-up with regularity in AC systems across Texas. Be wary of anyone that tells you that you have black toxic mold in your system without testing for it first.
Fears about black toxic mold is something we hear about a lot. Often discussed due to its ability to wreak havoc in both your body and your home, black toxic mold grows in areas with high humidity and moisture, such as after a hurricane or flood. It often appears as a black or dark green slimy substance and can produce mycotoxins that can cause serious health problems, including respiratory issues, neurological problems, and even death in extreme cases. Yikes!
Mold is a common problem in Texas where hot and moist air creates prime conditions for many types of spores to sprout up. Your local news reports mold concerns on their weather report. Not all of this mold is toxic.
That’s not to say it is advisable to leave these other types of mold untreated. Any mold in your HVAC system can lead to potential health problems for you and your family. Cladosporium, the most common type of mold seen in Texas HVAC systems, is typically found on damp surfaces such as pipes, drains, and air conditioning coils. While it is not typically harmful to healthy individuals, people with allergies or weakened immune systems may experience symptoms such as coughing, sneezing, and itchy eyes. Aspergillus and Penicillium, also present in HVAC systems, have a variety of different strains, all with varying health effects and symptoms.
Mold growth can also damage your HVAC system and reduce its efficiency. Common signs of mold growth in your HVAC system include a musty or moldy odor or visible mold growth on your vent covers or registers. Any mold growth in your HVAC system should be addressed as soon as possible, but the urgency associated with treating black toxic mold is usually not necessary.
The only way to know with certainty what type of mold you have is to get it tested. This extra step may give you more information but does not change the way a professional will treat your system so is not necessarily the most helpful. Bottom line, any mold growth should be cleaned and treated.
If you suspect that your HVAC system has mold growth, you should contact a professional to assess and address the issue. In the state of Texas, only companies with an AC license are permitted to treat mold in the HVAC system, so don’t hesitate to ask to see a person’s credentials before booking services. Peace of mind comes from having qualified individuals on the job. Here is a link for the details of that law: https://powervacamerica.com/a-quick-recap-of-the-laws-in-texas-for-duct-cleaning/
Power Vac America can effectively clean your air ducts and treat for mold using state-of-the-art equipment and techniques. Our team of experienced professionals will perform a thorough inspection of your air ducts to determine the extent of the mold growth before starting the cleaning process. We use high-powered vacuums, brushes, and anti-fungal treatment agents to help prevent the growth of mold and ensure that you breathe clean and healthy air.
For more information on this process, follow this link:
If you’d like more information about the types of mold you might find in your HVAC system and a helpful chart of common types of mold and their characteristics check out the link below: https://www.epa.gov/sites/default/files/2016-10/documents/moldguide12.pdf