Shared with permission from: BELFOR Property Restoration “Restoring More than Property”
If your home or business has had water damage or moisture issues, potentially dangerous mold growth can become a big problem. Mold can begin to grow within 12-24 hours and become visible within 72 hours. If you can see mold growing, the top priority is to remove and safely dispose of it.
There are questions to be answered:
- Is it dangerous?
- Is all mold bad?
- What is the cause?
- What is the most effective way to get rid of my mold problem?
- How can it be prevented?
If given the opportunity, mold can grow quickly and become a serious air quality problem. Large populations of normal environmental mold can overwhelm even a healthy immune system, so it is important to get rid of active mold growth. The question then becomes “how.”
An Ounce of Prevention
It is important to know how mold grows and how to prevent it. Mold needs a suitable temperature range, organic matter for food and most importantly, moisture. Since indoor environments almost always meet the first two criteria, high moisture levels for an extended period of time are the critical factor.
If moisture is the essential ingredient for mold growth, it seems it would be easy to prevent mold simply by removing water and moisture rapidly. Even in the most obvious scenario such as a flood, this is not always possible. When all visible water is eliminated, you still must deal with high ambient humidity and any saturated materials.
The other primary causes of mold infestations are undetected maintenance problems that produce moisture, such as dripping pipes or leaking air conditioners.
The planned response should include the services of an experienced restoration contractor who can perform the initial assessment and recommend remediation procedures and possibly refer to a mold expert is there are concerns.
Mold remediation is a specialized process requiring a unique combination of training, experience and equipment, which is why you should contract a trained, certified mold remediation and restoration professional who follows industry guidelines and standards.
Here are some critical steps a qualified professional should take:
- Track and measure moisture levels in all affected building components to determine where water damage has occurred, including uncovering hidden moisture
- Establish critical barriers and controls to prevent airborne release of mold spores
- Remove and discard non-salvageable contents and building materials
- Thoroughly clean all impacted surfaces
- Set up appropriate equipment for the job, and properly place it for rapid drying
- Conduct daily moisture readings, and record and report them (a critical defense in case of health assertions)
- Determine the building’s normal moisture level and document goal attainment
Don’t attempt to self-diagnose where mold is concerned, your house needs a doctor now and then, call in one of the restoration experts to assess.
Let us review your policy for mold coverage! Call Hometown Insurance at 1-800-568-SAVE (7283) or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
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