Mold can be a nightmare. It’s never a good feeling to discover mold, whether in a home you just purchased, your office, or the back of a closet you haven’t looked in for years.
Fun fact: mold is in the fungal family and has spores that continue to create more mold, especially in humid environments. It is an essential part of nature as it helps to aid in decomposition of dead matter. Also, the belief that mold behaves similarly to bacteria is a common misunderstanding (which is why trying to kill mold with bleach does not work).
When mold is found in your home or business, it can cause damage and cause serious health problems. If you find mold, it needs to be removed swiftly for your protection and prevent further damage.
It can be dangerous to remediate mold yourself, so don’t hesitate to call a restoration company specializing in mold removal. If you think mold is affecting your health, call to get it remediated immediately.
How Much Mold Is There?
The larger the affected area, the more serious the mold problem. Identifying the source of the issue is essential, so hiring a professional is a good idea. You don’t want to just create a bandaid for correcting a mold situation.
If the mold growth is under 10-square-feet (about the size of a beach towel), a homeowner or business can attempt to address the problem first. However, the EPA directs people with health concerns to consult a health professional before starting cleanup.
Where Is The Mold?
In many cases, the location of the mold is inaccessible. Call a mold remediation company if you have discovered mold in your ductwork, crawlspace, or attic. These areas are difficult to reach, and restoration companies will have the tools and expertise to access these areas.
Can You See Mold?
Although it may not seem like it, visible mold is helpful. The mold lets you know it’s there, and you can deal with it quickly.
Frequently, mold lurks in places you can’t see. However, it still gives you warning signs. An area of your home or office may feel damp, cold, and smell musty. Call a mold remediation technician if the smell doesn’t go away even after opening up windows and doors.
Why Call A Mold Remediation Technician?
When you find mold, it’s often a challenge to find out the severity of the problem. If you can see mold on the surface, there’s likely more mold behind walls or in other unseen areas, such as your HVAC system.
A mold technician has the tools and systems to identify types of mold and the severity of the problem. Usually, DIY mold removal is only a temporary solution. An underlying issue needs to be addressed to prevent more mold. An experienced technician can help you figure that out.
How Can I Remediate Mold Myself?
If the mold in your home or office is contained to an area of less than 10-square-feet and you are confident it’s only on the surface, there are a few things you can do:
- If an area feels damp and musty, run a dehumidifier. This may not solve the problem, but it can help improve air quality until you can solve the problem.
- Visit your local home improvement store. Some tools and cleaners can work on small, isolated areas of mold. DO NOT use bleach to clean up the visible mold. Instead, use borax (sodium borate), hydrogen peroxide, or vinegar.
- Rip out and replace the affected area. If mold is isolated to a small piece of drywall or an area of the carpet, rip it out and replace it. If you are experienced in home improvement projects, this is an option.
What Will A Mold Damage Restoration Company Do?
There are many methods of mold remediation. The company will investigate your particular situation and develop the best solution.
Here are a few strategies commonly used:
Removing And Replacing Affected Areas
If an item is porous, there’s no way to save it. You have to quickly remove it and replace it. This is true of carpet, rugs, and drapes. In addition, moldy drywall can also be removed. It is also a good idea to inspect the insulation and studs to see if the mold has spread into the wall.
Mold Cleaning Methods
If mold is present in a place that can’t be removed and replaced, it needs to be cleaned. For instance, this could include the studs behind a wall or concrete in a crawlspace. The most common mold cleaning methods are media blasting, hand scrubbing and biocides, and dry ice blasting.
Media blasting is one of the most popular methods of mold remediation. Blasting systems provide a thorough clean without much manual labor. Several media blasting methods are used by contractors.
- Water blasting is primarily used in air duct cleaning. It doesn’t work well if mold is adhered to the surface and is not as thorough. Mold has a good chance of coming back because of the moisture content.
- Baking Soda blasting uses baking soda to attack mold. It’s become popular because it does not cause much damage to the surface. However, it leaves a great deal of find dust behind. Cleaning up the waste takes extra time.
- Sand and grit blasting is more aggressive and can damage the surfaces being cleaned. In addition, there is a large amount of waste that needs to be cleaned up afterward. However, it does an excellent job of removing mold. It’s generally used on floor cleaning, coatings, rusted surfaces, graffiti removal, and surface preparation.
Hand Scrubbing And Biocides
The contractor will manually sand, wire brush, or scrape the mold from the surface in this method. This is a slow process, and protective gear is necessary. It’s also nearly impossible to reach every nook and cranny.
After scrubbing, the contractor will apply a biocide. This kills the remaining mold that couldn’t be removed. Once the chemicals are applied, the area needs to dry. This takes about a day. Then, an anti-microbial coating is applied to prevent further mold growth.
Depending on the size of the area of mold, this can be a very lengthy process. The upside is that the cost is cheaper per hour.
Dry Ice Blasting
Dry ice blasting accelerates soft CO2 pellets at supersonic speeds to lift the mold off the affected surface. This method is more expensive per hour but takes fewer hours than other methods.
This technique has many advantages. It’s safe, non-toxic, does not leave any secondary waste, and will not cause structural damage. Contractors can also get into tight spaces using dry ice blasting.
Once the mold is blasted off, HEPA vacuums are used to clean up the mold removed by the blasting.
What To Do When You Find Mold
The bottom line is: DON’T WAIT!
Act fast if you find mold at your home or office. The structural integrity of your building and people’s health is at stake. The smaller the problem, the less time and money it will take to clean it up.
If the problem is contained to an area of less than 10-square-feet, try to remediate the mold yourself. You can remove and replace the affected materials or try tools and cleaners from your local home improvement store.
If you need to call in a professional mold damage restoration specialist, work with an experienced, reputable company. Work together to decide the best removal method and locate and fix the source of the problem.
A mold-free environment is healthier for everyone. Once you fix the source of the issue, you shouldn’t have to deal with mold again.
Have you found mold? Call us today to remediate fast!