What Is Involved in Mold Remediation, and Can You Do This Work Yourself?

July 17, 2020

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Mold remediation is a vital service for any homeowner or commercial property owner, and often recommended after a flood, large spill, or fire, or if it’s discovered that a structure has poor insulation or trapped humidity. Mold remediation protects a structure from the costly cleanup and health hazards of excessive mold growth, and is different than mold cleanup and removal!

Mold remediation refers to monitoring a structure for the risk of excess mold growth and controlling its interior environment to reduce that risk. Remediation also involves cleaning and removing mold spores if they should start to develop and spread. As with any task involving dangerous mold, it’s not recommended that homeowners manage mold remediation on their own.

If you’re a homeowner or commercial property owner, it’s vital that you understand the dangers of excessive mold growth and how remediation services can protect a structure and its occupants. It’s also helpful to understand why mold removal and all other services related to mold be left in the hands of a pro!

 

Before you buy some protective gear and a new dehumidifier and try to tackle mold growth, water damage cleanup, and other such services on your own, note some information about mold, its dangers, and what’s involved in remediation services. You can then discuss your questions with a mold removal company near you and know that your home or business as well as everyone under your roof is protected from harmful mold!

What Is Involved in Mold Remediation and Is It Worth the Cost?

To know if mold remediation is needed in your structure and if it’s worth the cost, you might note some information about mold and its dangers to a structure, people, and pets, as well as what causes it to grow and spread. It’s then helpful to know what a mold removal company near you might offer during mold remediation services.

  • First note that mold grows best on wood, paper, and other such materials; in your home or office, this includes drywall, wood framing, wallpaper, caulk, and the like! Mold spores can’t feed on plastic, rubber, stucco, and other such materials.
  • Mold also grows best in areas without sunlight and fresh air circulation, as both sun and air help destroy growing mold spores. These areas often include spaces behind walls and underneath carpet padding where it’s difficult to spot mold growth without proper tools and expertise.
  • It’s important for property owners to also note that mold develops and spreads quite quickly, especially in dark, damp areas. After a flood or spill, mold might reach dangerous levels in just a few days and spread across surfaces just as quickly.
  • Note, too, that mold doesn’t require high levels of moisture to develop and spread. Even a large water spill in the home, such as from an overflowing tub, can mean dangerous mold growth, as can trapped humidity. However, the more water from a spill or flood and the longer it’s ignored, the more likely it is that building materials such as drywall and carpeting absorb that moisture, increasing the risk of mold growth.
  • Mold also holds dampness against those surfaces and this dampness is especially damaging to the materials that feed mold growth! Wet drywall and wood soften when exposed to excess moisture; drywall might crumble while wood can cup, bow, and otherwise warp.
  • While mold clinging to walls and other surfaces is not dangerous in of itself, breathing in airborne mold spores has been linked to many health concerns and can be triggering to those with asthma, allergies, and other such sensitivities.
  • Mold also tends to create nasty odors! Not only is a mold smell unpleasant but it can also result in headaches, sleeplessness, and sinus irritations.
  • Mold remediation services are not the same as mold cleanup and removal. Remediation refers to correcting something defective; mold remediation corrects the environment that might encourage mold growth, reducing that risk as much as possible.
  • Most mold remediation companies start their services with humidity level readings, noting if they’re excessively high. Building materials are then also checked for dampness; this might include pulling up carpets to inspect underlying padding and checking behind drywall or ceiling tiles.
  • Mold remediation also typically means blocking off overly damp and humid areas with plastic sheeting and other materials, to keep that dampness from spreading to other areas of your home or commercial structure.
  • Heavy-duty equipment is employed to remove excess humidity and keep those levels low. This might include dehumidifiers, fans, heaters, and the like.
  • During mold remediation, humidity levels are monitored continuously and repeatedly, ensuring they return to, and remain at, levels that don’t encourage excessive mold growth.
  • A mold remediation contractor also inspects areas for developing mold. If he or she should see mold spores developing, they will clean and disinfect that area immediately, to keep that mold from growing and spreading.
  • No matter your mold remediation costs, remember that mold cleanup and removal is often far more expensive! It’s also worth protecting your health and that of your pets at home or your staff and visitors to your business.

Why Avoid DIY Mold Cleanup and Remediation

Local building codes might limit the amount of mold a homeowner or commercial property owner is allowed to clean on their own, and those laws might also regulate how many cleaning materials and other items you can put in your household or commercial trash. However, even if allowed by law, it’s beneficial if homeowners rethink DIY mold cleanup, remediation, and other services related to water damage, fire damage, and resultant mold growth.

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One reason to avoid DIY mold removal is that trying to scrub away mold can allow it to become airborne, which then means an increased risk of breathing in those damaging, dangerous spores. Airborne mold spores might also land on your hair and clothes so that they then get dragged to other areas of your home or business! Even if you wear protective clothing and gear, it’s easy to create a hazard by attempting DIY mold cleanup.

Mold remediation is also a specialty service requiring training and expertise. A mold remediation contractor knows safe humidity levels in a building and the best levels to maintain for reducing mold growth risks. He or she also knows how to check dampness levels underneath carpeting, behind walls, and in other such places, and how to safely control humidity levels without causing wood and other such materials to become overly dry!

Professional mold remediation also helps keep humidity levels safe and discourages mold growth over the long-term. A mold remediation contractor might suggest permanent dehumidifier installations, water-resistant paints and other coatings, added ventilation in a home or commercial structure, and the like. Their advice might save a property owner thousands of dollars of future mold cleanup costs and health risks, making their work an invaluable investment!

When Your Structure Needs Mold Remediation

Homeowners and commercial property owners often fail to realize their structure’s risk for mold growth; some property owners might assume that only older properties develop mold, that mold only grows in certain areas of a home, and so on. In truth, mold can develop and spread along any material that feeds its spores and only needs a small amount of dampness and darkness to grow, as said.

It’s important to understand how a property might be at risk for mold growth so you know when to schedule mold remediation. Poor insulation and ventilation often means trapped humidity in attics and other rooms of the home, and an increased risk of mold growth. Plumbing leaks, even small ones, also trap moisture behind walls and this can also mean future mold! Homeowners who manage carpet shampooing on their own and fail to extract excess water might then see mold and mildew growing underneath that carpeting and its underlying padding.

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Floods, large spills, and fires that require lots of water to extinguish also mean excess moisture in the home and an increased risk of mold growth. The longer that water sits, the more likely drywall, carpeting, and other materials absorb moisture and the harder it is for them to dry properly, as said. Homeowners might also assume that building materials are dry after a flood or fire if they look or feel dry to the touch, without realizing that a floor’s underside or the area behind walls is saturated and at risk of mold growth!

To keep your home or commercial structure safe and reduce the risk of mold growth as much as possible, schedule mold remediation after a flood of any size or source. If your structure went through a fire and firefighters used water to extinguish the blaze, it’s also vital that you schedule mold remediation services.

A homeowner or property owner might also schedule mold remediation after plumbing or roof leak repairs. Fixing broken pipes and replacing damaged shingles protects a structure from future damage but does nothing to stop mold growth once water makes its way into a home or drips through those damaged plumbing fixtures. You might also schedule mold remediation if you notice an attic, basement, or any room of the home that seems overly humid and damp and especially if you see water stains on walls and ceilings, as this indicates excessive moisture and an increased risk of mold growth.

 

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