When summers are in full swing, many homeowners worry about something other than making their space cooler.
That’s what holds more time and consideration for homeowners with changing weather.
As soon as the summers start, people start noticing dark spots or black patches on walls and ceilings. When looking closely, they realize it’s mold. However, mold couldn’t stop by any other season, like winter or spring. But summers bring moisture, humidity, and potential water damage. That’s where it gets out of hand.
But why exactly does heat fuel mold growth?
The link between temperature and mold growth comes down to science. Mold is a type of fungus that reproduces by forming spores. Warm and humid conditions provide the ideal environment for mold to thrive. It wouldn’t be wrong to say the hotter and more humid the temperature is, the faster mold grows and spreads.
Some parts of the country struggle more with mold infestations in hot and humid climates. So we can say it really depends. Cooler places or regions may also create good breeding conditions if moisture traps in. Usually, these are damp basements with poor insulation that are more prone to mold. Whether it’s summer or winter, the temperature and mold growth are still in direct relation.
TexInspec is here to explore all the connections and sciences behind temperature and mold growth. We’ll look into the factors that contribute to mold growth in hot weather. Moreover, we’ll also answer all your frequently asked questions like ‘mold grows at what temperature?’ and more.
Why Mold Springs in Summers
Hot weather can greatly impact mold growth in your home. But to prevent its growth during hot weather, it’s important to control various indoor factors. Including humidity levels, water leaks, ventilation, and more. Let’s discuss these factors in detail.
Humidity is the main driver of mold growth in summer. Mold spores start thriving when the humidity level crosses up to 60%. While at 70-90% humidity, most molds reproduce rapidly.
You can understand this phenomenon. The capacity of the air to hold moisture increases in the hot summers. This allows higher volumes of water vapor to accumulate. Which is an indication that relative humidity is going to spike. High humidity also provides the damp conditions that mold needs to extract nutrients and multiply.
If summers and humidity prolong in your area, the mold will get more time to work its way into your home. That’s why you need to watch out for high humidity levels to stop mold.
Favorable Temperature Zone
Mold grows best within an optimal temperature range – typically between 40°F and 100°F. Well, that’s a general statement. Mold has its own types that have their own favorite temperature zones to grow and spread. Most of the mold species favor warmer temperatures between 70-90°F.
Summertime temperatures hit the prime zones for mold. This means that consistent heat and lack of freezing incite mold growth and reproduction. When temperatures are higher, they accelerate the metabolic processes of mold. And it can develop first on hot spots like attics and upper floors. But keeping your home cooler can really help to prevent mold growth.
From cooking to cleaning, daily activities generate moisture. And it can feed mold growth in summer.
Let’s explore some sources where the constant moisture lies and stimulates mold growth. It all starts with cooking processes like boiling, steaming, or baking that create humidity and moisture. For this, you can use vents and range hoods.
Then comes the showers and baths. An average shower produces 0.5 gallons of vapor. For this, you can use exhaust fans to vent the moisture outside.
Other elements like appliances such as dishwashers and washing machines also contribute to dampness and moisture. While plumbing leaks like dripping taps or pipes are also responsible for damp spots and mold.
It’s a common practice. People tend to shut windows and doors in summer to save on cooling costs. If your home doesn’t have proper airflow, it becomes a stagnant moisture trap.
Poor or lack of ventilation allows humid air to build up. It condenses on cooler surfaces like walls, windows, and pipes. This creates a breeding ground for mold.
To treat this, you should run exhaust fans, add dehumidifiers, and keep the windows open regularly. This way, you can keep the air circulating and prevent excessive humidity.
Water leaks, spillages, or intrusions raise moisture content instantly within homes, especially if it’s summer. You know well that wet spots dry slowly and give mold time to grow in this humid air.
If your home is facing any flooding, roof leaks, cracks, or bursting of pipes, it can create heavy water pooling and damp areas.
And you might not expect the next one.
But the food or drink spills also contribute to moisture buildup.
The only way out is to wipe off the spills and fix the leaks as soon as they occur. Because these are the factors that add to humid air and cause your surfaces to stay damp. Moreover, you can also deal with it by improving the drainage and diverting the rainwater away from your home.
Outdoor mold thrives during summer as well. When windows are left open, spores easily waft inside. And take hold in humid conditions.
You see, the outside plants in your home release more spores as temperatures rise. To avoid mold outside your place, you can use screens on windows. Also, avoid placing piles of yard debris near homes.
Your Pressing Mold Questions Answered
Mold Grows at What Temperature?
Hotter summers are the most optimal zone for mold and its species to grow. As we mentioned earlier, it takes 40°F to 100°F and everything in between for mold to thrive. And the ideal range could be 70-90°F.
Can Mold Grow at Cold Temperatures?
Yes, mold can grow at cold temperatures above freezing. Mold growth may slow down in cooler conditions. But spores remain alive even in refrigerators near 40°F. And the cooler places like basements also store moisture and other favorable living conditions for mold to grow.
Will Light Kill Mold?
Generally, no, light does not kill or prevent mold growth. Mold can thrive in dark or lit areas as long as moisture and humidity levels are sufficient.
Mold growth spikes in summer’s heat and humidity. It also grows after heavy rains, floods, or water leaks. We suggest you pay extra attention during hot, wet weather or after storm damage. And use dehumidifiers, exhaust fans, and air conditioners to control humidity based on your local climate. You should also fix leaks, allow ventilation, and remove any damp spots.
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