mold removal

MOLD REMOVAL INFORMATION

Use these 10 steps for necessary do-it-yourself clean up mold removal procedures for effective mold cleaning and treatment, mold maintenance, mold killing of all types of toxic and household mold and high counts of indoor mold, mold removal, mold remediation of mold damage, mold mitigation, and mold abatement to get rid of toxic mold, black mold, slime mold (Stachybotrys), and all other mold contamination and infestation caused by roof leaks, siding leaks, plumbing leaks, high indoor humidity, flooding, hurricanes, typhoons, tropical cyclones, tornadoes, storms, fire and other water damage problems, and removing mold in basement, attics and inside walls, ceilings, and heating/cooling equipment and ducts.

Just four words neatly summarize what has to be done in effective and safe clean up mold removal, mold remediation, mold mitigation, and mold abatement: CONTAIN, KILL, REMOVE, and PROTECT.

(1) CONTAIN the mold from spreading into uncontaminated areas;

(2) KILL the mold;

(3) REMOVE the dead mold; and

(4) PROTECT the cleaned out area against future mold infestations.

Whether you plan on doing your own mold removal and remediation, or hiring us, follow these ten steps to completely and safely remove mold problems, contamination, and infestation from your home, condominium, rental apartments, office, warehouse, retail store or other real estate building.  Where relevant, mold testing and mold remediation suggestions from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency are included below.

The mold removal and remediation techniques explained below are useful for removing and remediating mold from wood and other cellulose-based building materials such as OSB board, drywall, plaster, plywood, and ceiling tile, as well as mold growing on concrete and masonry surfaces such as bricks, blocks, and poured concrete walls and floors.

1.  Learn the techniques and procedures recommended for safe and successful toxic mold inspection, testing, and remediation---whether your prefer do-it-yourself or to hire us. How? Read mold remediation self-help books and internet mold advice websites, plus get professional guidance. Visit the website 911restoration.com.  If you are concerned about mold health problems, plus want to learn of all available mold medical diagnostic and treatment procedures, please call us immediately. If you need information about prosecuting or defending a mold legal claim, call us anytime.

2. Locate and fix all sources of mold-causing water intrusion such as recurring flooding, plumbing leaks, leaky roofs or siding, blocked air-conditioning condensation drain lines, and high indoor humidity [e.g., above 50 to 60%].  

3. Inspect and mold test inside, above, and below each water-penetrated ceiling, wall, and floor with a fiber optics inspection device, a hidden moisture meter, do-it-yourself mold test kits [available at large home improvement and hardware stores] or a mold inspection by a Certified Mold Inspector [CMI], and by cutting small core dry wall samples. Remove and look in the middle and back of each core for visible mold growth. You can also cut off thin veneer moldy slices from each core sampling, and then insert each veneer slice into a do it yourself mold test kit to watch for mold growth over a 7 day time period. More valuable to you in mold insights, would be to put each sample into a separate ziplock bag properly labeled with property address, precise testing location at that address, date of testing, name of tester [you probably], and your full contact info, and then to mail your collected samples to the mold lab you desire to use. For low-cost mold testing, use inexpensive Scotch®Tape to do lift tape mold sampling and/or do bulk physical sampling [collect physical pieces of moldy building materials or other items], and then send the tape samples or bulk samples to a mold lab of your choice for mold species identification.

4. Find and locate all toxic mold infestations (visible and hidden) in the entire home or building by thorough, all-around mold inspection and mold testing (with mold laboratory analysis and mold species identification of collected mold samples). "You may suspect hidden mold if a building smells moldy, but you cannot see the source, or if you know there has been water damage and residents are reporting health problems. Mold may be hidden in places such as the back side of dry wall, wallpaper, or paneling, the top side of ceiling tiles, the underside of carpets and pads, etc. Other possible locations of hidden mold include areas inside walls around pipes (with leaking or condensing pipes), the surface of walls behind furniture (where condensation forms), inside ductwork, and in roof materials above ceiling tiles (due to roof leaks or insufficient insulation)," warns the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

  • For all building locations wherein you see visible mold, use the clear Scotch tape lift sampling method, or scrape visible mold particles into a mold test kit [available at large home improvement and hardware stores].

  • Conduct a mold control test using a do-it-yourself mold test kit outside your home or building with the test kit being at least five feet out from any roof or porch overhang. You need this outdoor control test for comparison of results from your indoor mold testing.

  • Use a fiber optics inspection device, a hidden moisture meter, and internal wall and ceiling cavity mold testing to search for hidden mold growth.

5. Test the outward airflow from each heating/cooling duct register for elevated levels of airborne mold spores. If there is a serious toxic mold infestation anywhere in a building, airborne mold spores from such mold locations will usually enter and contaminate the heating/cooling equipment and ducts, as well as the rest of the building. Use do it yourself mold test kits to collect possible mold spores in the outward air flow from each register with the system running on fan ventilation.

6. Replace mold-infested heating/cooling equipment and ducts if the owner can afford to do so. Otherwise, do repeated mold spraying with a mold fogging machine and a mold home remedy recipe into the return air duct while the system is running on fan ventilation to deliver the fungicide to internal surfaces. Do mold fogging  for at least one half hour to hour into the return air duct of the central heating/cooling system.

Air conditioning-heating equipment and duct mold problems. When humid air passes over chilled cooling coils, water condenses and drips through the coils into a collection pan, from which it continuously drains. Problems with these systems may occur when this water collects and becomes stagnant either on the coils or in the drip pan. When standing water is present, a biofilm will develop. This biofilm is composed of bacteria and fungi that are embedded in a slimy matrix. Other organisms such as amoebae and algae may also occupy this comfortable growth site, feeding off the accumulated organic material. Learn how to deal with this important problem at Cooling Coil. In addition, it is common for the condensation line from the cooling equipment to become clogged, backing up water into the air conditioning unit and then, from there, into the house or building.

If there is a serious mold problem anywhere in a home or other building, airborne mold spores from those points of mold contamination will enter into the heating/cooling ducts and/or equipment to mold contaminate both, and thus the entire building. Of course, the opposite is also true: if there is mold infestation growing inside the heating/cooling ducts and/or equipment, the heating/cooling system will efficiently spread airborne mold spores through out the entire home or building through air distribution of the running system. In any home or building with mold infestation, you need to mold test the outward air flow from each heating/cooling duct register for the possible presence of elevated levels of airborne mold spores in comparison with your outdoor mold control test. Use us or do-it-yourself mold test kits.

When doing mold remediation of a house or building, the heating/cooling mold problems should be fixed first, and then you can seal tightly with plastic sheeting all inward and outward duct registers. Don't run the system until the rest of the home has been effectively mold remediated and the building has passed mold clearance tests done by an independent Certified Mold Inspector not involved in the mold remediation work, or by your use of do-it-yourself mold test kits available at a large hardware, home improvement, or safety store.

7.  If any residents or workers are experiencing any possible toxic mold health symptoms, or if there is a strong smell of mold, or if there are visible signs of major mold growth anywhere in the building, or if the building tests positive for elevated levels of airborne mold spores, the occupants should move temporarily to a mold-safe place until after successful mold remediation and clearance testing.

Hot Tips: Do you want or need quick and immediate mold relief? The first immediate action you can take is to remove almost all of the airborne mold spores 24 hours per day from the air you breathe in your moldy home, apartment, or workplace by running one or more of electronic air cleaners in different areas of your house, rented house/apartment, or place of employment. Your second immediate action is to use a hand-pumped garden type of sprayer to spray two coatings of a low-cost home-remedy fungicide in all rooms, attic, basement, crawl space, garage, and the heating/cooling equipment and ducts [through the return air duct while you are spraying directly into the return air duct] of your home, condominium, apartment, office, or other building. You can also place small to large fans in key areas of rooms/areas being mold-sprayed to help the mold fog to reach all areas of a room or area. Let each fungicidal spraying dry for about one to two hours while the fungicide is killing the mold. Then fan dry the area quickly to remove excess moisture from the spraying procedures. Then fog with two layers of homemade antimicrobial coating to help protect the areas against future mold growth. After each spraying, let the fog set for about one to two hours, then dry the area quickly with fans. The person doing the fungicidal spraying or fogging application needs to wear proper personal protective gear, as explained at point 13 below.

8. Occupants moving out should not take any clothing, personal possessions, furnishings, furniture, or equipment until after such items have been effectively mold decontaminated outdoors [or in a clean room built from plastic sheeting] to avoid mold cross contamination of the temporary living or working quarters.

9. Do not paint over mold problems. Mold loves to eat paint as a snack food. Don’t expect to kill mold successfully by using paint containing a mildicide [too mild to kill existing toxic mold infestation] or with a paint primer sold to hide water damage stains. Do not rely on Kilz to kill mold or anything---it does not kill mold, and the product is NOT an EPA-registered fungicide. Kilz is a good product to hide or camouflage defects like water damage stains prior to painting over problem areas.

10. Before beginning to work in the mold-afflicted areas, contain the moldy work area (and thus contain the toxic mold spores that will be released into the air by opening up mold-contaminated areas) by using wall-to-wall, floor-to-ceiling plastic sheeting as containment walls.