Marijuana, Mould & You

Mould – it’s not really what comes to mind first when you think about the legalization of marijuana. It was the top story throughout the country in fall 2018, and this in a year you wouldn’t describe as uneventful. But, the focus of attention has been on the buying and consuming end. The legislation, however, allows for Canadians to grow up to four marijuana plants themselves for personal use, and that’s where a little information on mould prevention comes in handy.

The Marijuana-Mould Connection
Marijuana can, in theory, be grown indoors or outdoors. The connection between marijuana cultivation and mould is all about humidity. Marijuana plants require high levels of humidity to thrive and grow.

  • Marijuana cultivation requires, at different stages of growth, humidity levels between 40 and 70 percent.
  • Humidity levels above 55 percent are associated with mould growth, particularly at 70 percent or above.

Here’s what you need to keep in mind.

  • First & foremost: if you can possibly grow it outside – including on a balcony – then that is the way to go, avoiding any increased risk of mould in your home. An online search will find you a reliable guide to its cultivation outdoors.

If you don’t have that option, then here is food for thought.

  • Marijuana grow-op operations have destroyed many homes. In a bid to prevent any of that due to legalization, Manitoba and Quebec have already banned any home growing operations.
  • In addition to high humidity levels, powerful grow lights may present a hazard.
  • Whether the humidity levels required for just four plants is enough to cause permanent damage may be arguable, depending on the size of the room, ventilation, and other factors.
  • If you do make the decision to go ahead, constant monitoring is essential.

The risk of mould is always present where there is increased humidity.

What About Insurance?

Most real estate and insurance experts advise against in-home marijuana cultivation because of the potential for mould and other damage. You may know there is a big difference between the four small plants in your back room and a huge commercial operation, but will future buyers of your home make that distinction – or will they pass you by just to be sure?

  • Most home insurance companies have already included a clause in their policies that specifically voids coverage on any property that is used for marijuana cultivation.
  • Companies may choose to make exceptions for the much smaller four-plant grows allowed under the new law, but that step has yet to be taken.

Insurance lawyer Jennifer Huneault (Hughes Amys LLP) was quoted in Gobalnews.ca on the subject.

“Insurance companies don’t tend to do home inspections before issuing policies, so that’s where we run into stigma,” she said. “Everyone has this idea of a grow-op, so it’ll be an uphill battle.”

Mould In Your Home? – We Can Help
Mould is associated with numerous health risks, including chronic problems of the nose, throat, and respiratory tract, persistent coughing, worsened allergies, and more. If you have mould in your home, a simple cleansing with bleach just won’t do the trick.

Let us help.

Our mould removal experts have years of experience, and will ensure that your environmental issue is eliminated efficiently. Mould can grow into walls, floors, and even carpets. If you smell that telltale musty odour, give us a call.

Let our technicians help keep you and your family safe. In the Toronto area call GreenStream Environmental at (416) 818-9414. Contact us for a quote today.

Featured in Mike Holmes’ magazine, HGTV’s Income Properties, W Network’s Love It Or List It and chosen by Homestars.com as “Best Toronto Asbestos Removal Company” based on customer ratings and reviews, GreenStream Environmental Services are fully-certified, trusted and insured professionals in the removal and disposal of commercial, industrial, institutional and residential asbestos, vermiculite and mould (hazardous and non-hazardous). Providing emergency service 24/7/365 for all of Toronto and the GTA (North York, Mississauga, Markham, Brampton, Scarborough, Ajax, Oshawa, and beyond) GreenStream has over 40 combined years of experience serving clients such as the City of Toronto, the Toronto District School Board and many more. For a free estimate in Toronto, the GTA and Southern Ontario, call today at 416-818-9414. You’ll be glad you did.