Water Damage and Mold - Basics
11315 Sunrise Gold Circle
Rancho Cordova, CA 95742
Mold Removal - Water
Damage and Mold - Basics
While a few areas of the country are actually in drought
conditions, much of the nation has experienced violent
weather in recent months and literally millions of people
have had a deluge (rain or flood) hit their community!
These storms have resulted in water damage impacting
hundreds of thousands of homes. If that water damage
is not remediated very quickly and professionally, the
inevitable result will be mold.
Molds are a very large group of fungi. Mold spores
are found everywhere throughout the world. However,
when molds are found indoors, they can damage or destroy
the structure, and they pose serious health concerns
to persons living in that environment, especially these
individuals who are highly susceptible: the very young
or the very old, persons with pre-existing respiratory
ailments such as asthma or lung disease, persons who
are already ill or are treating a chronic illness, etc.
The Nature of Mold
Mold needs only three things to grow:
1: An organic food source such as wood, paper, fabric,
leather, wool, etc., (even dirt on inorganic materials
has enough organic material to support mold growth).
2: An agreeable temperature range between 68º and 86º
F, which is typical of most occupied buildings.
3: Sufficient moisture that can come from a plumbing
leak, water damage from a storm (or even high humidity).
In most homes, the conditions are nearly ideal for
mold to grow - there is only one requirement item that
is missing - water. If you now add water from a storm,
or other source, and you do not remediate quickly and
correctly, then mold WILL grow.
|Following any water damage event, the very
best way to ensure that mold will not begin to grow is
to contact a restoration professional to remediate the
loss, or even to do an inspection to confirm that there
are no lingering (mold-causing) problems in the home.
A restoration professional has a wide variety of professional
tools and meters to evaluate a home quickly and thoroughly.
If there are problem areas then he/she will be able to
develop a plan for complete remediation and restoration
of the property.
If, despite all of your best efforts, you suspect that
there is mold in your home, it is important to know
what to do. In many cases, the very first indication
that mold is growing somewhere in the home is odor;
truly, your nose knows! The distinctive "musty/
moldy odor" (that everyone recognizes) is the result
of Microbial Volatile Organic Compounds, the gases that
are released into the air whenever mold is growing and
digesting food sources. When you notice the "moldy"
smell, then, somewhere, mold is growing. A very little
mold can give off a lot of odor. It is important to
find the mold and to properly remediate the problem,
and to be sure the underlying water problem is resolved/
fixed. Again, a restoration professional is a great
resource to assist in the evaluation and the remedy.
Mold should not be ignored. Department of Health officials
state that, "Many, if not most, molds can produce
potentially harmful substances, whether it's allergens,
mycotoxins, or other compounds. Hence, all indoor mold
growth should be removed promptly, no matter what type(s)
of mold is present or whether it can produce toxins."
|Often, people will attempt to
remove small amounts of mold themselves. A common example
is when mold (often called "mildew") is growing
on the grout of bathroom tile. Commercial cleaners designed
for mold and mildew removal are usually successful in
such cases. Obviously, the user should follow label directions,
wear gloves and eye protection, and ensure there is adequate
ventilation to avoid the buildup of unpleasant vapors.
It is important to remember that such cleaners consist
mostly of water (90% or more), and that moisture is the
leading cause of mold growth. It is therefore essential
to thoroughly dry the area after cleaning. Even a small
fan is can provide huge assistance in helping to dry materials.
If it is left moist, the mold/mildew will usually reappear
in a very short time.
If a significant amount of mold is present, or if you
are simply not comfortable in dealing with the overall
situation, then a professional remediation company,
such as PuroClean, should be contacted to assist with
evaluation and remediation. Such a company may establish
a containment area around the materials to prevent the
spread of mold and spores to other unaffected parts
of the building. Their employees will also wear necessary
Personal Protective Equipment such as gloves, impermeable
coveralls, face shields, respirators, etc. Care should
be taken to make sure the remediation is done properly,
by a professional. Otherwise it may be of little or
no benefit and could possibly make the situation worse
by spreading the contamination. Whenever appropriate,
they may also seek input from other specialized professionals,
such as an indoor hygienist. And, finally, it is essential
that the underlying water problem that allowed the mold
to grow in the first place, is fixed. If that is not
done, then mold will almost certainly reappear.
Regardless of the circumstances - damage from storms
or floods, mold assessment and remediation, or damage
from fire or smoke, call your local PuroClean office,
the Paramedics of Property Damage™. These professionals
are standing by and will mitigate the loss to prevent
further damage and will then provide restoration services
to return the property to a pre-loss condition as quickly
as possible. All PuroClean offices have professional,
well-trained technicians who provide the latest state-of-the-science
services to all property damaged from water, fire/smoke,
mold, and other disasters.
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