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  1. #1

    Default Suspected mold from cellulose insulation

    Had not one but two inspections in last couple of weeks where the attics were blown off with cellulose. In one attic in particular, the cellulose was blown onto the roof sheathing and rafters. When you look at the pictures, it appears that the cellulose (which after all, is organic) is causing mold accumulations.
    Who else has seen this? Should this home have a mold remediation? I did say I thought this would be necessary on one home; on the other home the degree of the insulation overshoot and suspected mold was so slight I noted it but did not think it rose to the level of a mold remediation, but am I being insufficiently cautious?

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  2. #2

    Default Re: Suspected mold from cellulose insulation

    Note: these photos were all from the 'bad' home. No photos from the other home.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Memphis TN.
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    4,311

    Default Re: Suspected mold from cellulose insulation

    Quote Originally Posted by Ernie Simpson View Post
    Had not one but two inspections in last couple of weeks where the attics were blown off with cellulose. In one attic in particular, the cellulose was blown onto the roof sheathing and rafters. When you look at the pictures, it appears that the cellulose (which after all, is organic) is causing mold accumulations.
    Who else has seen this? Should this home have a mold remediation? I did say I thought this would be necessary on one home; on the other home the degree of the insulation overshoot and suspected mold was so slight I noted it but did not think it rose to the level of a mold remediation, but am I being insufficiently cautious?
    .
    Ernie,

    Blown in Cellulose contains boric acid , I think this is what your seeing as" mold accumulations " and not an active mold growth. see attached http://www.nationalfiber.com/docs/Sp...eFacts0909.pdf for further insight about moisture or lack of in Blown in Cellulose. No Moisture = No Active Mold Growth.
    .

    It Might have Choked Artie But it ain't gone'a choke Stymie! Our Gang " The Pooch " (1932)
    Billy J. Stephens HI Service Memphis TN.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Southwest US
    Posts
    585

    Default Re: Suspected mold from cellulose insulation

    Unless you are a mold expert and / or certified, I would be hesitant to call for remediation. I think I would say something like evaluation by a mold expert with remediation if needed. Like Billy said, cellulose has mold inhibitors. Doesn't mean there isn't a moisture / mold issue but it probably doesn't have anything to do with the cellulose.

    END GLOBAL WHINING

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Caledon, Ontario
    Posts
    5,005

    Default Re: Suspected mold from cellulose insulation

    Looks like sap staining/ooze.

    In my opinion if there is mould it would be on the decking, also the nails don't appear to be rusting.


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Spring Hill (Nashville), TN
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    5,847

    Default Re: Suspected mold from cellulose insulation

    Quote Originally Posted by Ernie Simpson View Post
    Had not one but two inspections in last couple of weeks where the attics were blown off with cellulose. In one attic in particular, the cellulose was blown onto the roof sheathing and rafters. When you look at the pictures, it appears that the cellulose (which after all, is organic) is causing mold accumulations.
    Who else has seen this? Should this home have a mold remediation? I did say I thought this would be necessary on one home; on the other home the degree of the insulation overshoot and suspected mold was so slight I noted it but did not think it rose to the level of a mold remediation, but am I being insufficiently cautious?
    To say the insulation is the cause, is a big statement that I would not make. I have seen mold growth like you are showing in many attics over the years and it is usually related to poor ventilation of the attic.

    Based on the photos it looks like this is an older home. Older homes were never designed for our modern energy savings ideas and products.... It could be that the insulation has compounded the problem by sealing off the the attic even more, this I do not know for sure as it is based on the photos but it is very possible.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Chicago IL
    Posts
    1,984

    Default Re: Suspected mold from cellulose insulation

    Not seeing any mold like substance in any of those pics. The insulation doesn't look to be affecting anything. "Age typical" conditions.

    www.aic-chicago.com
    773/844-4AIC
    "The Code is not a ceiling to reach but a floor to work up from"

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Western Maryland
    Posts
    131

    Default Re: Suspected mold from cellulose insulation

    I've never seen cellulose grow mold, even wet patches. Looks like a ventilation issue from what I see. And I agree with Scott that insulation retrofits change attic conditions which affects when and on what surface condensation occurs.

    If that is indeed mold on the rafters, it is interesting that there is none on the roof deck.

    Mark Fisher
    Allegany Inspection Service - Cumberland MD 21502 - 301-722-2224
    Home Inspections, Mold Testing, Thermal Imaging

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