By definition, mold remediation is the removal of mold from an environment. There are several phases to execute the removal correctly. Perhaps the most critical of these is containment. Because mold reproduces by means of airborne spores, it is extremely important to isolate areas containing mold from surrounding spaces. We will set up containment systems and machines which extract spores from the air and trap them in filters that we dispose of. If this step is not done correctly, any disturbance of a colony of mold can aerate thousands of spores, which will spread to previously uninfected areas of your home. We will also address the source of moisture in your home. Mold needs moisture to grow, so discovering its source and eliminating it is essential to avoid recontamination. The cleaning, removal, and/or encapsulating of the mold will vary, depending on the particular materials involved and the extent of the damage. Our professionals will explain every aspect of your particular situation.
It is absolutely true that sodium hypochlorite (the active ingredient in household bleach) will kill most molds. Unfortunately, the solution is rarely that simple. On nonporous surfaces, such as ceramic tile or glass, household bleach will usually kill mold. This is an excellent way for homeowners to remove mold from tiled tub enclosures, shower curtains, etc. However, when mold has infiltrated porous materials such as drywall, carpet padding, or wood, the problem becomes a bit more complex. For one, chlorine discolors most materials and so may be contraindicated for that reason. For another, household bleach contains mostly water. Applying water to a porous surface may actually make the problem worse by giving the mold more damp material to spread to. Furthermore, the chlorine in the bleach often removes the color from the mold, making it appear to be gone, but it hasn’t actually been killed and will reappear. Lastly, and most importantly, mold on porous surfaces actually penetrates deeper into the surface than the bleach can reach to kill it effectively. We often see jobs where a homeowner had attempted to clean up a mold problem, and unwittingly made it worse. Agitating the mold, while attempting to mitigate it, can cause spores to aerate and form new colonies in previously unaffected areas. The only real solution is full remediation (removal) of mold.
There is a trend now for some remediation companies to market themselves as being “green” or “environmentally friendly”. There are also some companies which manufacture their own lines of proprietary cleaning agents, which promise to work better other products. The fact is that, done correctly, mold remediation is a pretty environmentally sound process. Because the focus is on removal of mold, and not necessarily on killing mold, noxious chemical compounds are not usually necessary. Our goal is to make your indoor air quality better by removing mold, not worse by introducing a lot of potentially hazardous chemicals.
People often ask us what to do first? Do I have testing performed to assess the type of mold in my space? Do I call my insurance company? Where do I begin the process? The first step is to give us a call. We will assess your situation, help determine if testing is necessary, and advocate for you through the, often daunting, process of filing an insurance claim.