What Is Trichoderma Mold?
Trichoderma is a pervasive form of mold. Like Penicillium, it has some benefits—it is used as a fungicide and plant pathogen in biotechnology and agriculture. However, like all forms of mold, Trichoderma can damage your home and make you sick.
Characteristics Of Trichoderma Mold
Trichoderma begins its life transparent in color, but becomes white and yellow until it matures and starts to produce spores. At that point, it darkens, becoming green and gray. Some Trichoderma has a sweet scent, like coconut. It’s colonies grow fast—they mature within about five days.
Trichoderma does best in moderate temperatures, and it does well in all types of climates. It is often found in soil, but indoors it can be found on wood, drywall, wallpaper, various paper products, carpeting, and textiles.
Trichoderma its almost always found homes that have significant water damage as it needs moisture to thrive. You might also see it in rooms where moisture is higher—in bathrooms, kitchens or basements. If air conditioning has caused condensation, it can also be found on filters or in heating, ventilation and air conditioning ducts in your home.
How Trichoderma Damages A Home
Trichoderma contains large amounts of cellulase. The enzyme breaks down cellulose, which is seen in paper products, wood products, and many textiles. Left unchecked, Trichoderma destroys these materials over a very short period.
Once a window air conditioning unit becomes infested with Trichoderma, you’ll need to buy a new one and dispose of the one you have. And if you have central air conditioning, you’ll fare no better—Trichoderma can move through your HVAC ducts, and once that happens, it can quickly spread throughout your entire house and be costly and time consuming to clean.
What Are Some Illnesses Related To Trichoderma?
Illness related to Trichoderma is rare in healthy people but common in those with compromised immune systems. Exposure to its spores can cause symptoms like coughing, sneezing, sore throats, and asthma and can lead to lung infection. Exposure to Trichoderma can also lead to an allergic reaction that may include varied symptoms from breathing problems to skin issues, like a rash or hives.
Trichoderma, like any other mold, needs to be removed as soon as you find it. If you chose to do the job, be prepared in not only how you protect yourself, but how you keep the contaminated areas of your home blocked off from the clean areas. If you have any questions, or simply feel the job is too big to do on your own, contact a mold remediation specialist for help.