Help with a pic

Today I was on an inspection and saw this my client is thinking its mold but all my experience says no. not all the conditions are present for mold.

This is some powdery substance with what looks like crystals forming on it.
its only in the dirt in a small 6" by 6" area I have looked in my mold books but I have never seen anything like this I’m hoping you guys might have some input.

If you need a full size version of the pic let me know I can email to you right away.

Call me first so I can respond much faster the help is greatly appreciated.

Presidential Inspections LLC
Troy Farmer
Po Box 2144
Eagle, Idaho 83616


I’m thinking efflorescence.

Looks like efflorescence

Great minds think alike… lol


More photos

I have never seen it grow up like that it has grown in the dirt about 2 inches high.

efflorescence seemed way to obvious based on the conditions, only because I have never seen it grow like this before.

Other forms of efflorescence was seen throughout the footings that was obvious.

Thank you guys for the help, we all learn something new everyday.
Again I have never seen it form like that before.

Where exactly is this? Can you explain the photo? I may be seeing things differently but I see a powder that looks like was sprinkled /thrown at this area. Like a borax or some kind of pest control maybe.

What is the ledge on the left?

Hi Gents –

Hard to say from the photo, but I tend to agree with Michael and Robert that the material on the side is visually consistent with efflorescence; don’t know about the stuff on the bottom.

But, I once was involved in a case wherein a “certified mould inspector” declared some efflorescence was “toxic mould” and “ordered” the occupants of an old folk’s home to immediately evacuate the property or they would die.

I was called in.

The property manager was incredulous when, without collecting a sample, I declared the material wasn’t mould, but was harmless efflorescence.

“How can you be so sure, without collecting a sample?!” He cried …

So I scraped off the material and threw it in a cup of water where it promptly dissolved. I explained that mould doesn’t dissolve in water, but efflorescence, being just salt crystals does dissolve.

Then he complained “How can I be sure that it’s harmless?” So, I drank the water.

Ta da! Science at its best (burp).

Caoimhín P. Connell
Forensic Industrial Hygienist

The opinions expressed here are exclusively my personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect my professional opinion, opinion of my employer, agency, peers, or professional affiliates. The above post is for information only and does not reflect professional advice and is not intended to supercede the professional advice of others.


Caoimhín You are the man got to love it . Thanks … Cookie

thanks. we miss ya

thanks. we miss ya