Recent Mold Remediation Posts

Dealing with Mold and Humidity Threats in Vacation Residences

10/31/2017 (Permalink)

A closed-up vacation house can be a breeding ground for mold in the summer months. Moisture from a nearby lake or river, or the humidity in the air, can lead to that musty odor vacationers have come to expect upon arriving at their weekend getaway.

Mold is a particularly stealthy foe. It exists nearly everywhere in an inactive state, and all it needs to grow is a food source (drywall will do nicely), and a source of moisture, such as high humidity.

To get rid of the damp odor, most homeowners will turn on the air conditioner and maybe a dehumidifier and wait for the smell to go away. While much of the odor may dissipate in a few hours, the mold is still there. And, when they leave for a week, it’s back again when they return.

That smell is more than just unpleasant; it’s an indication that mold is actively growing, triggering allergies and affecting health. Left untreated, mold will continue to grow and spread and can damage walls, ceilings, carpeting, and more. Every time the house is closed up and the a/c is turned off, the moisture creeps back in and the mold begins growing again.

MOISTURE SOLUTIONS

What can HVAC contractors do to help? First, it’s important to stress to customers that the key to preventing mold is to eliminate moisture. The first step is to address any leaks in roofing, chimneys, and foundations. Perhaps you can recommend someone who can do a thorough check and perform the repairs necessary to stop the leaks. If mold remediation is necessary, your customer should get bids from several companies that specialize in this, as it can be costly.

Reducing humidity through air conditioning is a key to controlling mold, but, of course, leaving the a/c on all summer long will run up utility bills. Fresh outside air is also critical, but vacation homeowners won’t want to leave windows open while they’re not using the property.

Some relatively new offerings in air conditioning systems can help manage mold problems. One example is a small-duct, high-velocity air handler, which has a unique cooling coil that removes 30 percent more humidity from the air than a traditional system. Eliminating moisture is critical in avoiding mold growth, so this feature is particularly important.

Another helpful technology is a continuously operating outdoor inverter unit that works so efficiently that homeowners can leave it on while they’re away without breaking the bank. It runs on various speeds — typically a very low speed — always striving for the most efficient operation by making small, incremental changes to keep a constant temperature. In a traditional system, every time the system cycles on it must ramp up to full operating power, requiring a tremendous amount of energy. You won’t have this issue with the inverter unit.

When cooling a summer home, the inverter technology is a great way for customers to keep air conditioning going when they’re gone, but at a lower cost.

Another great option is a ventilation system operated by a programmable control board. Based on the size of the home, the control board calculates how much fresh outside air to bring in at all times, opening and closing dampers as needed to maintain a healthy level of fresh air. Look for options that meet ASHRAE 62.2 standards for IAQ.

These newer technologies can go a long way toward reducing energy consumption while letting fresh air in and keeping mold problems at bay. More savings and fewer molds mean a healthier and happier vacation for everyone. 

Contact us at 973-546-4977 if you have a service need or click here to visit our website to learn more about SERVPRO of Wayne's System Services.

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10 Unexpected Places Where Mold Creeps Into Your Home

10/6/2017 (Permalink)

The Smith’s didn’t notice the mold and mildew smell in their home until they came home from vacation.

“What’s that smell?” John asked.
“Mildew. Maybe mold. Maybe I left some clothes in the washer,” Kathy said.

After an hour-long search, the couple couldn’t find a leak. So they called John’s brother David — a plumber. He came right over.

“The number one rule for checking for mold and mildew?” David said, “If it uses water, chances are it’s going to leak.”

These are 10 places many homeowners overlook when checking for mold:

Dishwasher


Unless a dishwasher stops working or needs replacing or servicing, most of us don’t think about it as a potential source for mold. There are two connections under each dishwasher that have the potential for mold and mildew to get started–the water supply and the discharge connection. The water supply needs to be lubricated with the right sealant and properly tightened  periodically. The discharge connection involves a rubber hose and clamp, and installing the hose before the dishwasher is installed ensures it is done properly. Hoses wear out over time. If you’re buying an older house, it doesn’t hurt to check the dishwasher connections — especially if there’s an odd smell when you open the door.

Icemaker Connections


Refrigerators often get moved, either for cleaning or other projects. This can weaken or break the water line connection to the ice maker, causing leaks behind the refrigerator.

“It seems like a simple job, so in the real world the plumbing contractor doesn’t install the water line, another contractor does,” Hoffman said. “The connection is a compression fitting and it must be installed properly to ensure there are no leaks.”

Washing Machine Connections

When installing a washing machine, always install a brand new washing machine hose, using the rubber washers the manufacturer recommends. Also, use Teflon tape and make sure to tighten the connection with vice grips so there are no drips or leaks. After all, it doesn’t take many drips to create an environment for mold.

Hot Water Heater


“Many states have laws regarding the installation of hot water heaters, and most of them involve overflow pans that are piped to drain outside the house. The pan must be tilted ¼ inch to ensure the water does drain. Newer heaters with quick connect connectors should be properly lubricated and tightened so the shut-off valve doesn’t leak,” Hoffman said.

Plastic P-Traps

Under every sink in your home is a “P-Trap,” almost always made of PVC pipe, which expands, and contracts. This process eventually loosens the connection and allows water to leak onto the base of the cabinet. If you look under sinks in every room you’ll easily spot the stains and discoloration commonly caused by leaking P-Traps. Use Teflon tape to seal every P-Trap and check them periodically, tightening them by hand to ensure their connections don’t loosen and leak. Over tightening PVC can cause it to crack, so be careful.

Toilet Connections

“I’m amazed at how many steps the DIY home improvement shows leave out when they explain about how to install a toilet,” Hoffman said. “The base of the toilet is where most mold grows. Toilets should be installed with a horned wax ring, and then the base of the toilet grouted in with tile grout,” he said. “The grout serves as a filler between the bowl and the floor to keep the bowl from rocking. Rocking bowls are the number one reason for the wax ring being compromised, which then allows mold to get a foothold.”

Shower Doors

Shower doors should probably be installed by plumbing contractors, Hoffman said. “They know how to keep them from leaking.” Mold growing at the base of the tub may be from leaking or improperly installed shower doors. Shower doors need caulking on all three rails — the two side rails as well as the bottom rail.

Tub

A properly caulked tub isn’t just nicer looking. It keeps water and moisture from dripping down under the tub and causing mold issues. Slab floors can create more problems — especially if installed by a DIY’er. The hole(s) in concrete slabs under tubs should be filled with a liquid tar, or expandable foam insulation to ensure moisture does not wick up from the ground through the slab.

Exterior Hose Bib

If you have a home, you have an exterior hose bib — a place where the water connection sticks out from the house. If you’ve used a hose, you know a poor connection or missing rubber washer, or loose hose can result in water spraying the house. This uncontrolled spray allows water to enter the space between the sidings, or into the wall, leading to mold growth. Make sure all holes, gaps and areas around every outdoor water connection are properly caulked and sealed.

Outdoor Water Sprinklers

Siding is engineered to shed rain falling down, not sprinklers shooting water up. Make sure your sprinklers are well away from the house when turned on. If you have children or teens that are watering the yard or garden, make sure they know not to spray the house with the hose. If power washing your home, hire a professional, or take care that water is not forced up under the siding as you wash.

As a homeowner, if you take the appropriate precautions and are vigilant about upkeep, you should be able to avoid mold, or catch it at it’s outset. While mold can be a huge problem in homes, even causing health issues, it is easily preventable.

When fire or water damage strikes, you need professional help to get your property back to preloss condition.  SERVPRO of Wayne provides 24-hour emergency service and is dedicated to being faster to any size disaster.  Our highly trained technicians can respond immediately to your residential or commercial emergency.??

Contact us at 973-546-4977 if you have a service need or click here to visit our website to learn more about SERVPRO of Wayne's System Services.

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Mold: Chapter 3 - The Professional Assessment

5/26/2017 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Mold: Chapter 3 - The Professional Assessment Mold Remediation

Ok, so you think you may have a mold issue.  You see mold growth,  there’s a heavy musty smell, or you just have a hunch something is not right and decide to find out exactly what type of mold or indoor air quality problem exists, if any at all.

In order to determine what the problem is, you can reach out to a Certified Mold Remediation company, like SERVPRO of Wayne, and get a free professional opinion.  We will inspect the areas of concern and offer opinion on cause, severity and next steps, which may ultimately involve the participation of a Certified Industrial Hygienist if the issue is serious or we can’t draw a satisfactory conclusion.

It is important to understand that a professional mold remediator is not necessarily someone who could, or even should, test for the presence of mold or develop a remediation project plan on their own as it could be deemed as a conflict of interest.  A third party evaluation should always be considered, which is why the involvement of a Certified Industrial Hygienist may be a critical component in protecting your home, your budget and your health concerns with any mold issue.

Certified Industrial Hygienists (CIH) are scientists / engineers committed to protecting the health and safety of people in the workplace and the community.  The CIH’s role, with respect to inspecting for mold and mold remediation, is:

  • The CIH will discuss the history of the environment with you to help determine root causes of any problem, from current or past water incursions or any other relevant environmental issue.
  • The CIH will visually inspect the areas of concern looking for water damage markers and the existence of visual mold growth.
  • They will make every effort to identify causes, if none are obvious to the homeowner, and provide corrective actions.  They may inspect exterior drainage, roof conditions, plumbing, etc. to make this determination.
  • The CIH may or may not take samples in their determination of existing mold conditions.  Sometimes conditions are obvious and testing becomes an unnecessary expense.  When samples are taken, these samples will be sent to a third party lab for analysis to determine the severity of mold activity and the various species involved.
  • Once lab results are returned, the CIH will produce a protocol for mold remediation and repairs to prevent a recurrence of mold growth.  This protocol becomes the defining project plan and is vital when you begin planning your project steps, project budget and begin the process of identifying contractors who may perform the work.
  • Finally, once any remediation work has been completed, the CIH will perform a Clearance inspection.  At this time, he will visually inspect the work area(s) to ensure satisfactory work was completed.  If he is satisfied with the visual examination, the CIH will take a final set of samples to ensure that the existence of mold, in the work area(s), is at satisfactory levels and the area(s) can be returned to the homeowner in a healthful condition.

There are several resources you can us to obtain a CIH.

  • They can be referred to you from a trusted source, like SERVPRO of Wayne,
  • You can find them online at various sources, such as the American Industrial Hygiene Association
  • You can perform a web search.

Be sure to always check credentials and experience in your selection process.

In our next chapter we’ll discuss project planning and budgeting for your mold remediation project.

Contact us at 973-546-4977 if you have a service need or click here to visit our website to learn more about SERVPRO of Wayne's Mold Remediation Services.

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Mold: Chapter 4 - Contractor Selection

5/24/2017 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Mold: Chapter 4 - Contractor Selection Choosing a mold remediation contractor

You’ve selected your Certified Industrial Hygienist and he’s performed his initial inspection.  If they have determined that there is a mold issue, their next step is to provide you with a written assessment and protocol, or mold remediation and corrective action work plan.

In this document, you should be provided:

  • the likely caused the mold growth,
  • current observations and conditions of the area(s) inspected,
  • sampling results (if samples were taken) describing the mold species identified and their impact,
  • a corrective action plan describing what repairs need to be made to prevent further damage,
  • a detailed remediation work plan which your mold remediation contractor will use is creating their proposal and work plan.

Your next step is to search for and invite remediation firms to bid on this project.  There are many sources you can use to identify potential candidates, such as:

  • web searches
  • referrals from your CIH or others
  • the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (org) or other reputable certifying firm

When inviting remediation contractors to bid on your project, ensure they are qualified.  Some of the questions or information you may request are:

  • Insurance coverage: candidates should have, and be happy to provide you with, the following insurance information.  Each should have reasonable limits to address the size of your project:
    • General Liability
    • Pollution
    • Workers Comp
  • Certifications and Registrations
    • They should ideally be firm certified in Water and Mold Remediation by an organization such as the IICRC, IAQA or ACA
    • Registered with Consumer Affairs as a state Home Improvement Contractor
  • Prior experience or testimonials:
    • Ask for testimonials or references from recent clients
    • Beware of online reputations.  Good or bad, they may only give you a very small sampling.

Each candidate you select should then be provided with a copy of the CIH protocol and permitted a time when they can inspect the areas in question.  The CIH should be made available to each candidate in order to answer any questions they may have regarding the project and to verify their intended approach.  The CIH should not instruct them on how to assemble their proposal, but should give them guidance as to what will be expected in order to pass clearance.

Since you provided each candidate with the protocol, there should be no confusion regarding scope of work.  Each proposal should show a timeline to accomplish the work and provide ample details.  If the candidate you felt most impressed with is higher, try to negotiate.

At this point you should have enough information to make your selection.  Next we’ll present project time and budget planning.

Contact us at 973-546-4977 if you have a service need or click here to visit our website to learn more about SERVPRO of Wayne's System Services. 

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Mold: Chapter 2 - Detection and Prevention

5/19/2017 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Mold: Chapter 2 - Detection and Prevention mold prevention and detection, mold testing

How to prevent mold growth

The key to preventing and stopping indoor mold growth is to control excessive moisture and condensation. Keeping susceptible areas in the home clean and dry is critical. In general, mold will not grow indoors without water, dampness or excessive moisture.

Three main factors contribute to condensation of water on building surfaces:

  • Relative Humidity: Condensation occurs when the air is saturated with water and it cannot hold any more moisture. For example, steam generated from bathroom showers or from cooking can fill up the air with moisture, which will then condense into drops of water on cooler surfaces, such as mirrors and windows. Where possible, localized sources of humidity, such as clothes dryers, should be directly vented to the outdoors.  To lower indoor humidity during warm, humid weather, air conditioners and/or dehumidifiers should be used. In chronically damp areas such as basements or crawlspaces, it is often recommended that dehumidifiers be used to maintain humidity levels below 60 percent.
  • Temperature: Warm air holds more moisture than cold air. Condensation occurs when warm humid air comes into contact with a cold surface and the moisture condenses into water. This can often be seen on single-pane windows, where water condenses and then runs down, causing the wood frames and sills to rot and the wall under the windows to blister. Condensation can occur on exterior walls, particularly north-facing walls, if they are not properly insulated. Other chronically cold surfaces, such as cold water pipes, should be covered with insulation to help prevent condensation.
  • Poor Ventilation: Indoor humidity can build up if there is not enough ventilation and exchange of indoor and outdoor air. Where there is little or no air movement, such as behind dressers and cabinets, surfaces can remain cooler than surrounding areas, which can lead to increased condensation and mold growth. It is recommended that the area be ventilated and the occupants use exhaust fans (vented to the outdoors) to remove moisture from high-humidity areas, particularly in bathrooms, kitchens and laundry areas. Furniture should be moved slightly away from walls so that air can freely pass behind it. Air should be allowed to circulate between rooms and regularly ventilate to remove humid air. Fans should be used as needed.

Other things that can be done are to clean and repair gutters regularly, make sure the ground slopes down and away from the home’s foundation and keep air conditioner drip pans and drain lines clean. In addition, in air conditioned buildings in hot and humid climates, vinyl wall coverings on the interior sides of exterior walls should not be used, as these materials can trap moisture, resulting in mold growth underneath them.

In the case of floods or leaking pipes, any standing water should be promptly removed and water-damaged materials should either be dried out and cleaned, or removed and replaced. Porous materials that are wet for more than 48 hours are likely to produce mold growth and should be discarded. In instances where the water damage is extensive, it is recommended that professional help, such as a commercial restoration company, be consulted.

Should I test my home for mold on a routine basis?

Probably not. Looking for evidence of water damage and visible mold growth should be your first step. Testing for mold is expensive, and you should have a clear reason for doing so. In addition, there are no standards for “acceptable” levels of mold in the indoor environment. When air testing is done, it is usually to compare the levels and types of mold spores found inside the home with those found outdoors. If you know you have a mold problem, it is more important to spend time and resources solving the moisture problem and getting rid of the mold than to spend it on sampling.

What to do if you see or smell mold in your home

The most important step is to identify the source(s) of moisture, which result in mold growth, and make repairs to stop them. If you only clean up the mold and do not fix the moisture problem, most likely the mold growth will recur.

If the source of the moisture is related to a building failure or fault, such as a burst pipe or leaking roof, a professional contractor should be consulted. In instances where the moisture source does not appear to be related to leaks, floods, structural faults or rising damp, it is most likely due to condensation. If you do not see mold growth but smell a musty odor, mold may be growing underneath or behind water-damaged materials, such as walls, carpeting, or wallpaper.

Once the source of the moisture has been identified and fixed, you need to decide if removing the mold from the affected areas is something that can be done without professional assistance. If the mold growth was caused by sewage back-up or other contaminated water, potential pathogens may be present and the work should be performed by a professional contractor that has experience in cleaning buildings damaged by contaminated water.

If the mold growth is due to condensation or small-scale leak and is limited to a small area (fewer than ten square feet), you can probably do the work yourself following guidelines such as those that have been prepared by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation and AIHA.

On hard surfaces, such as countertops and furniture, use detergent and water to wash mold off and then dry completely. The use of biocides or chemical disinfectants is not recommended as these may be hazardous to occupants.

Moldy porous or absorbent materials, such as ceiling tiles, wallboard and carpeting should be removed and replaced. People cleaning mold should wear rubber gloves, goggles and an approved respirator to protect against breathing airborne spores. An N95 respirator would be appropriate for most cleanup projects, provided that you are medically capable of wearing a respirator. If you have health concerns, you should consult your doctor before doing any mold cleanup.

Over the past decade or so, the industry has given rise to many individuals and companies who tout themselves as experts and certified in various aspects of mold investigation and remediation, but who may have little or no practical experience. If you choose to hire a consultants to help identify your problem, or a contractors to perform the cleanup in your home, make sure that they have specific work experience in dealing with and cleaning up mold, and check their references.

Source: AIHA American Industrial Hygiene Association

Contact us at 973-546-4977 if you have a service need or click here to visit our website to learn more about SERVPRO of Wayne's System Services.

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Mold: Chapter 1 - Background

5/4/2017 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Mold: Chapter 1 - Background mold growth, mold remediation, black mold

The subject of mold growth and remediation can be a complex issue which prompts many questions:

  • How did the growth happen?
  • Is my health in danger?
  • How do I get rid of it?
  • Will it happen again?

We'll issue a series of blogs to present the various points on mold growth and what you can do about it.

What is mold?

The term “mold” is a colloquial term for a group of filamentous fungi that are common on food or wet materials. This includes the green Penicillium species that produces penicillin, and fungi that spoil our bread, fruit, cheese and crops. Most of these are Ascomycetes (def: ascomycetes include most molds, mildews, and yeasts, the fungal component of most lichens, and a few large forms such as morels and truffles) that produce a lot of spores.

The majority of the molds that grow on damp building materials are found in the soil and are adapted to grow on a wide variety of materials. Outdoors, molds live in the soil, on plants, and on dead or decaying matter. There are thousands of species of mold and they can be any color. Different mold species are adapted to different moisture conditions ranging from very wet to just damp. Many times, mold can be detected by a musty odor. Live spores act like seeds, forming new mold growths (colonies) under the right conditions. All of us are exposed to a variety of fungal spores daily in the air we breathe, both outdoors and indoors.

How mold gets into a house or building

Mold and fungal spores occur naturally outdoors, where fungi are the earth’s most important recyclers. Indoors, mold needs moisture to grow; it becomes a problem only where there is water damage, elevated and prolonged humidity, or dampness. Common sources of excessive indoor moisture that can lead to mold problems include:

  • flooding from surface waters (i.e., overflowing rivers) or from severe storms;
  • roof leaks from damaged or missing roofing materials, ice dams or blocked gutters;
  • storm-driven rain through window frames, exterior walls or door assemblies;
  • leaking pipes, sewer back-ups or overflows;
  • damp basements or crawl spaces due to a high water table or poorly managed rainwater drainage; and
  • condensation on cold surfaces.

Should I be concerned about mold?

It all depends on how much mold there is. Small amounts of mold growth in workplaces or homes (such as mildew on a shower curtain) are not a major health concern. Large quantities of mold growth, however, are an important public health concern. In addition, mold can damage building materials, finishes, and furnishings and, in some cases, cause structural damage to wood.

How molds affect people

Most people have no reaction when exposed to molds. Allergic reactions, similar to pollen or animal allergies, and irritation are the most common health effects for individuals sensitive to molds. Flu-like symptoms and skin rash may occur. Exposure to molds may also aggravate asthma. In very rare cases, fungal infections from building-associated molds may occur in people with serious immune disease. Most symptoms are temporary and eliminated by correcting the mold problem.

?Who is affected by exposure to mold?

There is a wide variability in how people are affected by airborne mold spore exposure. Currently, there is no established airborne concentration that is known to adversely affect any individual’s health. People who may be affected more severely and quickly than others include:

  • Infants and children
  • Elderly people
  • Pregnant women
  • Individuals with respiratory conditions or allergies and asthma
  • Persons with weakened immune systems

Those with special health concerns should consult their doctor if they are concerned about mold exposure. Symptoms that may seem to occur from mold exposure may be due to other causes, such as bacterial or viral infections or other allergies.

Can mold spores contain toxins?

Yes. Some of these fungi produce toxic metabolites (mycotoxins), and almost all molds that grow in the built environment can produce triple helical glucan, both of which are toxic to lung cells. Many studies in appropriate laboratory animals have demonstrated that very low exposures of these compounds can result in inflammation. The health effects of breathing mycotoxins indoors are not well understood and they continue to be studied. This research is done to better understand why epidemiological studies consistently show increased asthma among occupants of damp buildings not associated with atopy.

Black Mold

The news media and some contractors often refer to “black mold” or “toxic black mold.” It is usually associated with Stachybotrys chartarum, a type of greenish-black mold commonly associated with heavy water damage. Not all molds that appear to be black are Stachybotrys. The known health effects from exposure to Stachybotrys are similar to those caused by other common molds, and ?again in high exposure situations, are known to be associated with severe health effects in some people. Such exposures seldom, if ever, occur in buildings except during remediation activities by people not taking appropriate precautions.

Source: AIHA American Industrial Hygiene Association

Contact us at 973-546-4977 if you have a service need or click here to visit our website to learn more about SERVPRO of Wayne's System Services.

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Mold Damage - What To Do

10/28/2016 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Mold Damage - What To Do Mold damage

Microscopic mold spores naturally occur almost everywhere, both outdoors and indoors. This makes it impossible to remove all mold from a home or business. Therefore, mold remediation reduces the mold spore count back to its natural or baseline level. Some restoration businesses advertise “mold removal” and even guarantee to remove all mold, which is a fallacy. Consider the following mold facts:

  • Mold is present almost everywhere, indoors and outdoors.
  • Mold spores are microscopic and float along in the air and may enter your home through windows, doors, or AC/heating systems or even hitch a ride indoors on your clothing or a pet.
  • Mold spores thrive on moisture. Mold spores can quickly grow into colonies when exposed to water. These colonies may produce allergens and irritants.
  • Before mold remediation can begin, any sources of water or moisture must be addressed. Otherwise, the mold may return.
  • Mold often produces a strong, musty odor and can lead you to possible mold problem areas.
  • Even higher-than-normal indoor humidity can support mold growth. Keep indoor humidity below 45 percent.

If you see visible mold, do not disturb it. You can inadvertently spread the mold infestation throughout your home. When mold is disturbed, the mold can release microscopic mold spores which become airborne and can circulate inside your home.

What to Do:

  • Stay out of affected areas.
  • Turn off the HVAC system and fans.
  • Contact SERVPRO of of Wayne for mold remediation services.

What Not to Do:

  • Don’t touch or disturb the mold.
  • Don’t blow air across any surfaces with visible or suspected mold growth.
  • Don’t attempt to dry the area yourself.
  • Don’t spray bleach or other disinfectants on the mold.

If you believe your home or business has a mold problem, we can inspect and assess your property and use our specialized training, equipment, and expertise to remediate your mold infestation.

About Our Mold Remediation Services

SERVPRO of Wayne specializes in mold cleanup and restoration, in fact, it’s a cornerstone of our business. We are Firm Certified by the IICRC and Our crews are highly trained restoration professionals that use specialized equipment and techniques to properly remediate your mold problem quickly and safely.

If You See Signs of Mold, Call Us Today – 973-546-4977.

Visit our website for more information about mold.

Managing Mold

6/13/2016 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Managing Mold Mold growth patterns.

When there’s a water intrusion, like a roof leak or leaking water line, mold can quickly become a problem in your home or business.  Mold can cause health effects and can also cause significant damage to your property.  Fortunately, SERVPRO® of Wayne Professionals have the training, protective gear, and specialized equipment necessary to handle your mold problem.  Although every mold damage scenario is different, requiring a unique solution, the general mold remediation process stays the same.  The following steps illustrate a “typical” mold removal process.

Call 973-546-4977 to reach SERVPRO® of Wayne.  A representative will ask a series of questions to help determine the necessary equipment, resources, and personnel needed.

Inspection and Damage Assessment

Your property will be carefully inspected for signs of mold using technology designed to detect mold and hidden water sources. Mold feeds on cellulose and water and can be hidden from plain view.

Mold Containment

Various containment procedures will be placed to prevent the spread of mold and isolate the contaminated area with physical barriers and negative air pressure to keep the mold spores from spreading during the cleanup process.

Air Filtration

Specialized filtration equipment captures microscopic mold spores out of the air.  SERVPRO® technicians utilize powerful air scrubbers and HEPA vacuums to prevent the spread of these mold spores while the mold remediation is in progress.

Removing Mold and Mold-Infested Materials

The mold remediation process depends on the amount of mold growth and the types of surfaces on which the mold appears. Antifungal and antimicrobial treatments will be used to eliminate mold colonies and help prevent new colonies from forming.  Removing and disposing of mold-infested porous materials, like drywall and flooring, may be necessary to remediate heavy mold growth.

Cleaning Contents and Belongings

SERVPRO® Professionals clean your furniture, decorative items, curtains, and other restorable items affected by mold. They use a variety of cleaning techniques to clean and sanitize your belongings. They are also trained to remove odors and deodorization using fogging equipment.

Restoration

Depending on the level of mold damage, drywall, subfloors, and other building materials may be removed.  Restoration may involve minor repairs, such as replacing drywall, painting, and installing new carpet; or it may entail major repairs such as the reconstruction of various areas or rooms in a home or business.

Your local SERVPRO® of Wayne understands mold and mold growth and have the training and equipment to remediate mold in your home or business.

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Understanding Mold

11/21/2015 (Permalink)

From The Ordinary

Fungi and mold naturally occur in our environment. Infact, over 100,000 kinds of fungi have been identified.

Fungi produce some veryuseful results. Yeast is atype of fungi used inpreparing breads, baked goods and other food products, including some alcoholic beverages. The unique flavor of blue cheese is a result of mold. An edible mushroom is simply a type of fungi, and life saving penicillin is a product of mold (Penicillin chrysogenum).

Even though some forms of mold can add value to our lives, other forms can be harmful. Excessive amounts of mold, different types of mold, and/or exposure to molds may present health concerns for some people.

To The Unhealthy

Intrusion of water into your home or place ofbusiness can result in mold growth. Water intrusions can result from storm damage, plumbing or equipment failures, long-standing leaks and poor humidity control.

When water intrusions are not addressed right away, the resulting damage can present increased risk of harmful mold growth. Some amount of mold spores are normally present in most environments. If the humidity and moisture levels in a water-damaged environment are not promptly returned to normal, mold spores may grow and multiply. Organic materials found inside abuilding, such as wood, paper, drywall and insulation, provide food sources for mold to flourish. Excessive mold growth can lead to indoor environmental conditions that pose a health threat.

Health Concerns

Health concerns may arise when excessive mold grows indoors. Concerns are more likely to arise for “at risk” people, which might include immune suppressed or compromised individuals, young children and individuals with chronic inflammatory lung diseases such as asthma and severe allergies. However, anyone may experience health problems associated with exposure to mold in damp buildings.

Possible health effects include: runny nose, sneezing, coughing, aggravation of asthma, sore throat or inflammation of the sinuses.

People most at risk include:

  • Infants and children.
  • Pregnant women.
  • The elderly.
  • People with compromised respiratory systems or asthma and allergies.
  • People with weakened immune systems.

Take Precautions

SERVPRO® of Wayne handles water damages every day and knows prompt action is required to prevent mold growth. Mold is more likely to spread when an environment has been subject to moisture for along period of time. If your property has sustained a recent water damage, it is vital to remove excess water and dry the structure promptly.

If there is an ongoing moisture problem in the building, it is important to be alert for:

  • The presence of visible mold.
  • Strong musty odors which may indicate mold ispresent.
  • Any evidence of past moisture problems that might have caused undetected mold growth.
  • Excessive humidity.

These conditions may require the expertise of a qualified Indoor Air Quality/Environmental Professional to inspect the building for mold growth and water damage problems.

Indoor Air Quality/Environmental Professionals

Indoor Air Quality/Environmental Professionals evaluate the quality of the air inside a structure.

Some specialize and are skilled in testing buildings for the presence of molds. Using various testing devices, these professionals collect air and surface samples to compare the indoor mold spore count to the outdoor environment. If you have concerns about mold, SERVPRO® of Wayne can assist you in locating a qualified Indoor AirQuality/Environmental Professional.

Help Is Here

If you think you might have a mold problem, call 973-546-4977. A SERVPRO® of Wayne Professional trained in mold remediation will examine the structure for any visible signs of mold.

In the event mold is found, you will be asked to approve and sign a work authorization form prior to any mold cleanup or related work being performed.

The technician may also recommend you leave the affected area while the mold cleanup and associated containment process is being safely completed.

If extensive mold growth is present, additional assistance may be required. Some situations require the addition of an Indoor Air Quality/Environmental Professional with the specialized equipment and services needed to assess and /or repair property. You may wish to consult your adjuster if needed.

SERVPRO®of Wayne cares about proper restoration of your structure. In most water damage situations excessive mold growth is not a problem and SERVPRO®of Wayne Professionals can safely restore your building to pre-loss condition. The need to address the presence of mold can only be determined by an on-site, indoor environmental inspection. Please keep in mind SERVPRO®of WayneProfessionals do not interpret insurance policies or coverage; you must consult your insurance company to determine the scope of policy coverage.