Our very long, hot summers and humid transitional seasons creates an ideal environment for mold and microbials to grow.
It is absolutely critical to remove any mold growth as soon as possible. Serious health complications could result for your family or employees, and your home or commercial building may require extensive repair.
There are a lot of misconceptions about mold. Once you know the facts, you will have a better understanding of mold and its impact. Here is list of five common mold myths and the truth behind them. Use this information to your benefit and get tips for what to do to prevent microbial growth and mold problems.
Myth 1. You only have mold if you can see it.
FACT: Moldy odors are produced by microbial volatile organic compounds (mVOCs). The smell is usually described as a stale, earthy, or musty.
One fallacy about mold is that it’s only there if it’s visible. Mold can be obvious in many areas around the home, but serious mold growth often hides where you can’t see it. Hidden mold can be found in places like behind dry wall, on top of ceiling tiles, under carpets and carpet padding, inside walls around plumbing, and inside HVAC ductwork.
The presence of mold can be detected by your sense of smell. If you smell a musty, stale odor, it can indicate the presence of mold. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) suggests that if you smell mold or have had water damage you should consider hiring an experienced professional.
Myth 2. Bleach will get rid of mold.
FACT: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) discourages the use of bleach as a mold cleaner.
One common mold removal solution that many people use is bleach. If the surface affected by mold is porous, bleach will only sterilize the surface. Even in the case of a non-porous surface, although the mold will be dead, it can still cause an allergic reaction in some individuals.
Instead of using chlorine bleach or other biocide for microbial cleanup, use a scrub brush and strong detergent to scrub away any mold and vacuum all surfaces. You will want to use protective equipment. To prevent breathing in mold spores, you can use an N-95 respirator. Read the instructions for proper use of the respirator.
Rubber gloves that extend to middle of your forearm are also recommended. Dispose of any contaminated materials that cannot be cleaned such as clothing or furniture.
Myth 3. Once mold is removed, it won't come back.
FACT: Correcting the water or moisture issue that created the problem is necessary to assure mold will not come back.
In order to be assured that mold will not return you must resolve high humidity, moisture, or other water problems that cause mold to grow. Once the area is cleaned of mold, it is important to dry and seal the affected area.
Taking the proper steps to prevent mold from returning is essential. This includes addressing any water damage, as well as ensuring adequate ventilation and humidity control. Mold cleanup and remediation can not be considered complete until any water or moisture issues have been resolved.
Myth 4. It's necessary to test for mold.
FACT: It is not a necessity to test for mold since all types need to be removed.
It is indicated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that "people are routinely exposed to more than 200 species of fungi indoors and outdoors". Mold testing gives you a snapshot of the quantity and type of mold present, but all types of mold need to be removed. It’s not essential to identify the type. Also, there are no health-based safety standards for mold levels, so testing doesn’t necessarily give valuable information, and it’s expensive.
Dry out and repair the affected area: Use fans and dehumidifiers to dry out the area that has been affected by mold. Make sure to repair any water damage that may have caused the mold and prevent future mold growth.
Myth 5. All mold is dangerous.
FACT: Mold can affect your health due to long-term exposure or sensitivities, but some molds are actually beneficial.
Generally, inhaling mold spores increase the possibility of respiratory issues in people with underlying issues or people with high sensitivity. Mold may also cause allergic reactions.
Toxic compounds called mycotoxins can be produced by molds. Mycotoxins are poisonous substances that are capable of making people sick. However, not all molds are dangerous to health.
Some molds can also be beneficial. Mold helps decompose organic material, and some molds are used in the production of cheese. Some molds are used in medicine. The Penicillium mold was essential in the development of the first antibiotic, Penicillin.
Tips for Mold Prevention and Control
Moisture control is the key to mold control.
It is important to act quickly if there is a water leak or spill indoors. Drying out any materials or surfaces that have become wet within 24-48 hours usually prevents the growth of mold. Additionally, make sure air conditioning drip pans are cleaned and drains are unblocked and functioning properly.
Indoor humidity needs to be kept low, ideally between 30-50 percent relative humidity. One sign up high humidity is condensation. If you find this moisture on windows, walls, or pipes, quickly dry the wet surface and find ways to lower the humidity such as a dehumidifier or running your HVAC system.
Remove or replace carpets and upholstery that have been soaked and cannot be dried right away. Avoid using carpet in places like bathrooms that may have a lot of moisture.
Need Mold Removal and Remediation in North Texas?
Mold can be tricky, but our certified mold and microbial remediation contractors offer the most thorough mold remediation services in Texas and fair removal costs.
The team at Bishop Builders will work with you every step of the way to ensure a proper remediation is completed and a reconstruction of the damaged structure is performed to your specifications and the most current building codes. CONTACT US for more information.