Mold is defined as being a fungus that grows in the form of multicellular filaments.
Mold can be very dangerous. Once it gets into the household, it is very hard to get out. Detecting it will keep your family safe and free of health problems.
Mold grows in places that see lots of moisture. You may have seen spores starting to develop in your basement or laundry room. Mold also grows on food that’s left out in the heat as when combined with moisture develops into the nasty fungus.
It’s not the end of the world as there are ways to rid your home of mold and also prevent mold from happening. One thing to consider is moisture. Mold develops out of moisture. Most mold activity starts in homes where moisture is found.
Mold Restoration Do’s and Don’ts
Mold is everywhere in our environment and poses little risk until it is allowed to grow indoors. When it grows in your home it is slowly destroying it while releasing MVOC’s (Microbial Volatile Organic Compounds) and producing massive amounts of spores.
These elements combined can create a hazardous environment for humans and animals alike. When handled properly by a professional or capable homeowner moldy homes can be remediated and brought back to normal.
- Use common sense. Fungi needs moisture to produce food, MVOC’s, and spores, by finding and eliminating the source of moisture you can stop mold from growing and ultimately reoccurring after remediation.
- Wear protective equipment when coming into contact with Fungi.
- Assess the size of the colony. If it is larger than a 3 foot by 3 foot square do not disturb the colony and call a professional.
- If the moisture source has been stopped and the colony is small (10 sq ft or less) remove any porous surface (drywall) that you can without disturbing any permanent or structural framing. All trash should be bagged in a black 3 mil contractor bags and sealed before removing to the outside.
- Treat affected area with an anti-microbial chemical while wearing protective gear (mask, gloves, etc)
- While still wearing your protective gear scrub any remaining colonies with a detergent.
- Sand any wood items with heavy grit sandpaper, you only need to shave the very top layer. Some of the discoloration is enzyme staining and of no concern.
- HEPA vacuum the area from top to bottom, wet wipe hard surfaces.
- Seal with a primer/sealer the remaining wood. Allow to dry before repairing.
- Touch or attempt to clean up large amounts of mold growth. Spores are invisible to the naked eye and slight disturbances in the air can spread millions of them.
- DO NOT PUT BLEACH ON MOLD. There are far better and safer anti microbial products available. Bleach releases dioxins and does not effectively kill viable spores and source colonies before evaporating.
- Do not hesitate to call a mold professional and ask questions.
How to prevent mold:
- Identify problem areas – No one can mold proof their homes, but it would help if you could. Check your home out for potential places for mold to grow and keep the moisture out of that particular area.
- Clean and dry wet areas ASAP – Tending to your mold problems as soon as you can helps to stop it from spreading. You need to clean areas where spills have occurred within 24-48 hours. This includes basement flooding and areas where the rain has affected it.
- Provide proper ventilation in the home – Make sure that any room that has the potential for mold can easily be ventilated. For example running the bathroom exhaust fan before and after taking a shower will help absorb the moisture.
- Purchase mold-resistant products – There are places, such as your home goods store, that sell mold-resistant items. This includes building materials such as paint and sheetrock. These materials will help stop mold from taking your home over.
- Monitor indoor humidity – Too much moisture will cause mold to grow inside of the home. Keep the humidity down to ans least 30-60% as this comes highly recommended by the EPA.
- Along with keeping mold out out of your home, you should also start thinking about what it can do to your health. Prolonged inhalation of mold can cause lots of upper-respiratory problems. If you are having problems with your breathing, then get that mold out of your home before the situation gets worse.
Symptoms caused by mold exposure:
- Runny Nose
- Nasal Congestion
- Irritation to the eyes ans throat
If you begin to notice any of these symptoms seek medical attention immediately and rod your home of mold. You can use a bottle of diluted bleach for temporary relief. Mold is nasty and it will stay in your home and get worse over time. When black mold grows, there is no escape from it. It is one of the nastiest and most deadly forms of fungus.
Some of the most common indoor forms of mold:
Mold affects people in various ways. One such way is contributing to their health. Another way is destroying the home’s interior. You pay good money to keep up with your home, so why all the mold? Mold tends to grow in warm places that sees lots of moisture. Just because mold is growing in your home doesn’t mean that you aren’t keeping up with it.
By vacuuming and cleaning your home on a regular basis, you can prevent mold from happening. This includes places with a lot of moisture such as your bathroom. Also, bathroom flooring should not consist of carpeting. Carpeting tends to get moldy as tiles are easy to clean.
Always launder throw rugs. If you use a lot of throw rugs throughout the house, then make sure to stick them in your laundry basket when doing a load of clothes. Mold can grow under them and spread. In order to keep your home free of the fungus, clean your rugs regularly.
There are many ways in which you can keep you home free of mold. If you follow the mentioned steps above, then you can live without it. Remember, mold can be very hazardous to your health. Don’t let your home becomes victim of it. Take care of your home by becoming more aware of the fungus.