Mold is something that no property owner wants to discover, but finding a solution doesn’t have to be difficult. Knowing the fundamentals of mold cleanup and what to do when mold growth occurs can make life much easier if and when mold is discovered in your home.
Molding is more than meets the eye. Mold problems can range from minor and easy to clean to serious health and environmental risk that necessitates the services of a professional mold remediation company to address widespread damage. Here’s how to tell what you’re dealing with and how to handle various types of mold removal.
What causes mold damage?
It can be beneficial to understand what causes mold to grow in the first place. What does mold require in order to grow and thrive? What kind of environment can result in a serious mold problem?
Not all mold is harmful. Outdoor mold, for example, plays an important role in nature by decomposing organic materials. Mold growth inside, on the other hand, can be hazardous and should be addressed as soon as it is discovered.
Mold spreads via microscopic mold spores that land in a moist environment. The key here is moisture; they can’t thrive unless they have a wet surface to grow on.
The Most Common Types of Mold
Mold is not all the same. Molds found in homes can cause unpleasant symptoms at best and are known carcinogens that can lead to serious disease at worst.
Because some molds are more dangerous than others, mold remediation options can vary greatly. Whatever mold you have, will fall into one of the following categories:
- Allergenic molds
Allergenic molds produce allergens that cause allergy symptoms such as a runny nose and skin rashes.
- Pathogenic molds
Pathogenic molds can worsen symptoms for those already suffering from certain health issues, such as asthma attacks.
- Toxigenic molds
Toxigenic molds are toxic or harmful molds that can cause serious health problems. Toxic mold is one type of mold that you should be aware of right away. Toxic mold can cause cancer, so you should not only get rid of it right away but also limit your exposure to it as much as possible.
The most common types of toxic mold found in homes include:
- Acremonium – a white, gray, or pink mold that grows in areas with condensation, such as windows and humidifiers.
- Aspergillus – an allergenic mold that grows in a wide variety of colors and can become toxic in certain circumstances.
- Chaetomium – a white, gray, or black mold commonly found in buildings with water damage.
- Fusarium – a white, pink, or red mold that can be found around the house on carpets and wallpaper, but also on food.
- Stachybotrys – known as black mold, can also appear green and slimy and release mycotoxins.
- Trichoderma – a white mold with green patches that grow in areas with condensation, such as an HVAC system or damp fabrics like carpet and wallpaper.
How to Clean Mold Yourself
Some mold is more easily removed than others. If the mold is easy to access and covers a small area, you should be able to clean it without the need for a mold remediation service.
Make sure you have the proper protective equipment before cleaning any mold, especially if you’re dealing with toxic molds. A mask or N-95 respirator, rubber gloves, and goggles are required. Those with compromised immune systems should exercise caution when cleaning mold or avoid doing so entirely.
If the mold growth is on a hard surface, such as a window, tub, or tile, scrub it with a mild cleaning solution and water before thoroughly drying the area with a towel or rag. Some cleaning products have been developed specifically to remove mold, but they are not always necessary.
To prevent mold growth on porous materials, wipe the affected area clean with a rag rather than a more abrasive item such as a sponge, as this will not damage the material’s surface. If the material is particularly porous, you may need to completely remove and replace it.
When to hire mold remediation professionals
If the mold infestation exceeds your ability to clean it up, it’s time to call in a professional remediation service. Professional mold remediation should not only remove and clean existing mold but also take preventative measures to keep it from growing back.
It’s best to contact a mold remediation service if:
- The mold covers a large area or several areas in your home.
- The mold growth is in an area that’s hard to access and clean.
- You suspect there is hidden mold in your home based on a musty odor, symptoms of mold exposure, or known water damage.
What to Expect from the Mold Remediation Process
Before mold can be remedied, a mold inspector will need to assess your home and gain a better understanding of the type and scope of mold that needs to be removed. Mold testing may also be performed to confirm the presence of hidden mold or to determine the type of mold in your home. The mold remediation cost will be heavily influenced by this initial assessment, though more or less work may be required once the work begins.
The remediation process can include a variety of techniques or the use of specialized equipment, depending on the type and location of the mold. Even if you can’t see it, professional mold remediation services can locate all of the molds in your home. They will then clean the mold or completely remove it, repairing or replacing any air ducts, gypsum board, ceiling tiles, or other building materials that have been impacted by the mold remediation.
It’s never a bad idea to check with your insurance company to see if mold remediation is covered by your homeowner’s policy. Many mold remediation companies can collaborate with you on insurance claims.
Trust One Call Services for Your Mold Remediation Needs
When mold damage occurs in your home, you can rely on One Call Services. The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration Certification (IICRC), the gold standard for mold remediation specialists, has certified our team.
To meet all financial needs, we provide free estimates, 24-hour emergency services, and budget-friendly options. We welcome the opportunity to speak with customers in order to better understand their needs and walk them through the mold remediation process. Contact us right away to have your mold remedied permanently.
Why is mold growing in my home? Retrieved from https://www.epa.gov/mold/why-mold-growing-my-home
Types of mold. Retrieved from https://branchenvironmental.com/mold-indoor-air/toxic-mold/types-of-mold/
How to get rid of mold. Retrieved from https://www.homedepot.com/c/ah/how-to-get-rid-of-mold/9ba683603be9fa5395fab907c52351c