Recent Mold Remediation Posts
3 Key Differences Between Mold and Mildew
Is it Mold or Mildew?
You have seen it in the basement before, and it has now reappeared after cleaning. What is it? A remediation expert in Denham Springs, LA, has different tests they can perform to figure out if you have mold damage. However, if you don't want to ask for an assessment, then three identifiable features can help you differentiate between these two fungal cousins.
The appearance between mold and mildew growth is often evident. Mildew is typically flat and grows of non-porous surfaces, like tile, making it a nonpenetrating substance. Its cousin, however, loves to invade porous items, growing deep within. Mold also has a more three-dimensional appearance and is often described as fuzzy.
Color can also vary drastically between mildew and mold damage. Mold is often more vibrant and colorful, often appearing in green and yellow. Mildew, on the other hand, is often described as being monochromatic, appearing mostly in greys and whites. However, mildew and mold can both alter their color if they come into contact with other liquids.
When it comes to resilience, mold growth reigns supreme. Mildew can often be removed with over-the-counter and readily available cleaners. Mold, however, due to its deep-rooted ways, will usually require deep and invasive cleaning practices. For example, porous items might need to be discarded altogether, and non-porous surfaces will typically have to undergo several rounds of scrubbing. Also, because of how mold develops, drywall might need to be removed as well as the insulation behind it.
While mildew and mold damage might both be considered fungal growths, they are significantly different. Therefore, if you cannot figure out which you are dealing with, you are better off hiring a professional to assess your property. They will look for signs of water damage and probably tests the air quality to determine which fungus you are dealing with.
What to Know When Dealing With Mold Issues
You cannot clean up mold on your own. The EPA’s recommendation to clean up a moldy area of up to 9 square feet is to wipe it with a cloth dampened with a diluted bleach solution.
The EPA and California Department of Public Health always recommend mold consultants. They do not. In fact, minor mold situations, they say, can be handled by the resident or with janitorial staff.
Mold consultants are licensed. Mold inspectors or consultants are not licensed by the government, but instead hold credentials and memberships in trade organizations.
Mold cannot be caused by the resident. Mold accumulation can often be caused or worsened by a failing to properly ventilate a residence. Mold can build up in stuffy bathrooms or any area where the environment is humid, warm and poorly ventilated.
Insurance never covers mold. Partially true: Property insurance policies do not normally cover mold, fungus or dry rot. If a water damage incident occurs, and the damage is not discovered and ventilated soon, mold can result (and dry rot). The property insurance will normally refuse to cover the cost of mold remediation, but will still typically cover the rest of the repairs. However, if the property owner is sued because of water damage including mold, the liability part of the policy ordinarily will defend the claim.
Let the emergency contractor do everything. Because of the panic associated with mold, the normal reaction is to call emergency services contractors. Such contractors are more expensive, because of their readiness to respond almost immediately at any hour. Stopping water leakage and drying the space might require an emergency contractor. However, sometimes a plumber might be enough.
Keep demolishing walls until you find no mold. Panicked residents often ask a landlord or HOA to open walls to look for mold. However, this is almost always a waste of money. Allow demolition only of what is immediately necessary, and then seek bids for the non-emergency work.
Mold damage situations must cost at least $10,000 per occurrence. The cost of repairing water damage skyrockets due to unnecessary tests, delays in responding to the leakage (the most common cause of mold buildup), excessive demolition and using emergency contractors for everything, and foregoing competitive bids for repairs. Be more deliberate, and save money.
What is Black Mold?
Black Mold is the name commonly used for stachybotrys chartarum. It is one of the most infamous mold because it can grow in any type of building and affect animals and individuals differently. Nevertheless, not all mold that appears black is the toxic black mold, stachybotrys chartarum.
Stachybotrys is known as a toxic mold because it produces toxins called mycotoxins. SERVPRO of South Livingston and our highly trained technicians can help eliminate your mold issues from your home or commercial building.
What Does Black Mold Look Like
Black mold is a greenish-black gelatinous mold. It usually appears slimy, because of a wet layer on the top. However, if the water source that helped produce the toxic black mold drys up, it can look powdery and dry-like.
Do I Have Black Mold?
There are quite of few types of molds that look similar to toxic black mold. The only way anyone can be certain stachybotrys chartarum is present is to have an environmental hygienist come and take air sample, which they will send to a lab. There, they will produce a mold report that will state the exact type of mold and the precise amount of mold spores present.
If you visible see mold, but are unsure if it is truly mold, SERVPRO of South Livingston’s team come out and perform a mold assessment.
About Our Mold Remediation Services in South Livingston Parish, Louisiana
SERVPRO of South Livingston specializes in mold remediation, in fact, it’s a cornerstone of our business. Our highly trained technicians are restoration professionals that use specialized equipment and techniques to properly remediate your mold issue quickly and safely. Contact our office staff if you think your home or office may have mold. Schedule a Mold Assessment at 225-667-2220.
3 Items That Can Be Salvaged After Mold Damage
Mold growth can be a common result of flooding in your South Louisiana home. Mold can grow on a variety of items, from furniture to walls to wood and flooring. When it comes to mold cleaning, however, you may be surprised about the number of objects that can be salvaged when you know the steps for cleaning them properly.
1. Leather Goods
Leather bags, jackets and other items may be salvageable if you remove them from the affected area quickly. Because mold tends to spread faster in areas with high humidity, you can perform mold remediation for these items by transferring them to a room that is cool and dry. Once the leather has dried, you can sponge the surface with diluted baby soap to wipe away visible mold. Suede goods may need to be treated by a mold cleanup and restoration company.
While not all clothing can recover from mold damage, you may be able to salvage some items. An Esporta Machine, which is designed to clean cotton clothing affected by mold, smoke and other substances, can be effective in removing mold. You may be able to soak some fabrics in diluted vinegar to remove the mold, but this depends on how fragile the fabric is. Your restoration experts may able to advise you about other mold cleaning processes.
Paintings affected by mold require special treatment. You may want to remove any wooden framing, as mold is attracted by wood fibers. Store the painting flat, away from humidity and sunlight, before contacting a professional artwork restoration company. Avoid bagging or sealing it in any kind of tight container, as this may create humid conditions that could encourage further mold growth.
When flooding in your Livingston, LA, causes mold to grow on your belongings, you may not know where to begin with mold cleaning. Contacting professional restoration technicians and removing your items from areas where mold is present can help you salvage irreplaceable items and proceed with the rest of the cleanup with confidence.
For more information, please visit us at http://www.SERVPROsouthlivingstonparish.com.
Mold Damage Experts in Livingston Talk About Severe Cases
Team SERVPRO Understands How Mold Forms and Spreads Throughout Your Home
If a building such as your Livingston rental home has a problem like a pipe break, the issue can go unnoticed if it is unoccupied. Most houses contain a vast amount of organic materials including the wooden structural components, drywall, some types of contents and sub-flooring. These organic materials work as good food sources for microbial growth when the temperatures are ideal, and there are elevated moisture levels. As time goes on the contamination can spread and get more and more severe.
Once a fungus forms, it grows structures called hyphae that spread across the materials and release spores. During any mold damage project in Livingston, it is important to keep these microbes from spreading and causing secondary problems. Since fungi can cause health effects with some people, containing the area is essential to prevent spores from spreading to unaffected areas.
The first step our SERVPRO technicians take when starting the mitigation process is to build a containment chamber around the affected areas. The chamber gets built with thick plastic sheets and metal poles and is made to seal in any dust or contaminated particles that get put into the air during the work process. An air scrubber then gets attached to a side of the chamber and works to clean the air from harmful microbes as the remediation process takes place.
If the contamination is extremely severe, the entire home can be contained so that harmful microbes do not get into the outdoor environment. In every severe mold mitigation case, our SERVPRO technicians wear IICRC certified personal protective equipment to protect themselves from the harmful substances and to keep them from spreading contamination elsewhere. Once the containment chamber gets set up with the air scrubber attached to create negative air pressure inside the chamber, we begin removing contaminated contents and materials.
If contents inside the building are contaminated, then they get removed before treating structural materials. If the items can be cleaned and saved, then they get moved off-site to a clean and disinfected location. If the objects got badly damaged, then they get disposed of in sealed plastic trash bags. If you ever need help with remediating a house with severe contamination, call SERVPRO of South Livingston (225) 667-2220 24/7.
Mold Damage Technicians In Livingston Describe How To Assess The Environment
Technicians Describe How To Assess The Environment
A fungus only needs three things to grow and survive inside a Livingston building. The fungi must have excessive moisture, an organic food source such as wood or paper and temperatures around 70 degrees Fahrenheit to thrive. Mold damage can occur because microbes naturally exist throughout your home inside dust particles and in other places. Once conditions inside your home reach the ideal range for development, these microbes get activated and form into mold contamination.
Since fungi can cause health problems for some people, our SERVPRO crew takes extra measures to maintain good air quality inside your home. When we go to Livingston and conduct mold damage mitigation services, we come up with a safety plan that will keep our workers and all of the occupants in your residence safe from harmful substances. Everyone that works on the job site has to wear specialized personal protective equipment so that they do not breathe in dangerous particles in the air. Our team shows up at your property equipped with full body plastic suits, full face respirators, along with their hand and foot protection gear.
Microbial growth takes place often in dark areas that you do not look at every day. A slow water leak or one that went unnoticed for a long time are common causes of fungal formation. Once the fungus exists, it grows hyphae that spread across, into and out above the affected surface. The structures often look like small black dots that contain a little white fuzzy substance. The job of the hyphae is to create microscopic spores that the organism uses for reproduction. These spores become airborne and float around the structure until they find a place to settle and contaminate a different section of the house.
The first step to mitigating issues with a fungus is to determine whether or not mold actually exists. Our SERVPRO experts work directly with you the homeowner and find out where you believe the contamination is located. We inspect contents and building materials in your house to see whether mold exists by looking at possibly contaminated materials and by smelling the dwelling to see if foul, musty odors exist. We then find out from you if you have had previous problems with microbial formations or if you experienced a water leak recently. Determining the cause of the fungal development can help prevent issues from returning in the future. If you ever notice black mold forming in your home, call SERVPRO of South Livingston Parish at (225) 667-2220 seven days a week.
The Professionals Know Mold
When you believe there is mold in your home it is important to call the professionals. Mold can be difficult to find but once identified the Certified Mold Remediation experts from SERVPRO of Livingston Parish can help you with the cleaning and disinfecting of your home.
Let the Professionals Work Their Magic
An expert in interior environmental services has special tools to inspect for molds. Air quality testers gather samples from your home. A lab analyzes results to provide information about the extent of an infestation. Mold testing might also include thermographic imaging.
Professional mold remediation experts also have the tools and expertise to trap molds and eliminate them. We use containment and personal protective equipment to keep mold from spreading during its eradication and disposal.
Visit www.SERVPROsouthlivingstonparish.com for more information on mold.
What to Expect During Mold Remediation
Let SERVPRO of South Livingston help with your mold remediation!
Mold can grow almost anywhere in a home or business if conditions permit. If there is visible growth on painted wall surfaces, property owners should be concerned about what may be growing on the wall's opposite side. The environment inside the walls of a house often differs drastically from the outside and could create a perfect haven for mold. If the wall remains wet for a prolonged period, it's almost guaranteed that the mold growth on the back side will be worse than on the front. At that point, containing the work space and removing moldy materials, followed by cleaning of salvageable framing, are the best options.
Certified professionals have the training and experience to:
- Identify moisture sources
- Evaluate mold growth (visible or suspected)
- Contain damage to the smallest area possible
- Physically remove contamination
- Dry materials to ensure that mold will not return
- Perform or recommend procedures for returning property to a preloss condition
The IICRC outlines five major principles of mold remediation.
- Make sure safety and health precautions are taken by cleanup professionals and occupants. Mold-contaminated buildings can be associated with many health problems. Anyone involved in the mold remediation process must be protected from exposure through a combination of practices and controls.
- A post-cleanup assessment by an independent environmental expert. An effective mold remediation cannot be developed without first determining the extent of the contamination to be removed. To ensure that remediation work is being properly performed, it is highly recommended that appropriate documentation of the remediation process be kept by project management
- Control of mold before it spreads further. Eliminating mold at the source of contamination is essential. Once mold spores spread through the air, it will be much more difficult to capture.
- Oversee the proper physical removal of the mold. The mold must be physically removed from the structure. Attempts to isolate mold or remove signs of mold on the surface are not adequate. Note that bleach alone cannot kill mold.
- Ensure that moisture is controlled to limit future contamination or recontamination. Mold growth is virtually inevitable if moisture is not controlled. Moisture problems must be identified, located and corrected or controlled as soon as possible.
For more information call the SERVPRO of South Livingston experts at (225) 667-2220