Common Signs of Mold in Your Air Conditioner
There are several common signs to look for when it comes to mold in your air conditioner. One of the most noticeable signs is a musty scent that only seems to fill the room when the air conditioner is running. This odor stems from mildew. The smell might be limited to a single room if you’re using a window-mounted, freestanding, or wall-mounted air conditioner, but the musty scent can fully permeate your home if you have significant mold buildup in your central AC unit.
Mold is also known to cause a variety of negative health conditions, like allergic reactions, trouble breathing, and various respiratory problems. Signs of ongoing allergic reaction or respiratory problems can indicate the presence of mold. You can also see large patches of mold, so if you spot fuzzy, black, or green-black patches, you know the AC unit has mold. Mold can also be brown, green, white, pink, yellow, or orange, though black is the most common color.
Why Would Mold Grow in My Air Ducts?
Mold grows in ductwork when there is moisture and the temperature is warm. A warm, humid environment is the ideal place for mold to thrive in, and Houston, Texas is one such place where you may always need the service of mold remediation companies.
Mold could also grow in your air ducts when you have HVAC problems such as:
- An oversized AC unit – larger units in small spaces cool off the air too quickly and go off before dehumidifying the air, leading to the excess moisture that mold needs to thrive in.
- A leaking duct – ducts that have leaks that let in warm air creates the temperature differential that can invite mold.
Also, if you set your AC on a very low temperature always, you could just be creating the right environment for mold to settle in your HVAC duct.
How to Prevent Mold in Your Air Conditioner Unit
Beyond professional maintenance, you can take steps to help prevent mold growth in your home and in your AC unit. One method is to reduce moisture buildup in the AC unit by regularly emptying the collection reservoir or investing in an air conditioner with humidity control. You can also prevent mold growth by cleaning the unit at least once a week and checking the filter.
Replace disposable filters about once a month or as recommended by the manufacturer. If you have a reusable filter, make sure to clean it once a month. Additionally, running the air conditioner can reduce mold buildup because the constant flow of air prevents mold spores from settling on the surface.