Many companies will show you before and after photos of mold with the after usually just in white. But is the mold really cleaned? Here is a before and after of a basement joist covered in mold, and prior to any encapsulation. This photo shows why we always apply clear encapsulates and only use white as per the customer request.
In the mold remediation and water damage restoration business, there’s many pieces of equipment that are vital to completing a job. Mold Remediation will use equipment like Air Machines, (Scrubbers and Negative Air), HEPA vacuums, Fog machines etc. While Water Damage Restoration will use equipment such as Turbo Fans, Axial Fans, Dehumidifiers and more. So why is this important for a home owner to know? Because without the proper upkeep of this equipment, your home or business could be subject to cross contamination, improper removal of mold, and structures that aren’t dried correctly. Many companies new and old alike, will buy used equipment from large franchise outfits that have already used them for several thousand hours. One location will purchase the equipment, and then sell it to a newer franchise and so on, before it’s finally dumped back into the market, where smaller companies purchase them for pennies on the dollar. These machines have been used for several years and can log up to thirty thousand hours of use or more, and now are being brought to your home. Is this always a bad thing? Not necessarily. But the chance that these pieces of equipment have been maintained properly throughout the years is very minimal. Which brings us to another point.
Many companies even with newer equipment, do not maintain them properly. It is completely fine for a home or business owner to inspect the equipment being used. For air machines, new filters should be visible for each job. Contractors who arrive to a job with dirty filters are already risking cross contamination by just introducing that machine into the home even before turning it on. All equipment should be clean and free from dirt or soot, while fans and dehumidifiers should also be pushing out the appropriate amount of air. When fans are nearing the end of their life cycle, they’ll tend to make a lot of noise, push out a minimal amount of air and drain your electric. You can always get a hint of the caliber of contractor you’ve hired from the type of equipment being used and how well it’s maintained. If they can’t maintain their own equipment, how could they do a good job in your home?
Pictured here is a set of photos from a dishwasher leak that caused major damage in a kitchen. The cabinets and walls behind the kitchen both had to be removed because of water damage and mold. The flooring also had to be removed, as the subfloor was soaked through.
Alternaria is one of the most important allergenic molds found in the US. It is most common as an outdoor mold, as it thrives on various types of vegetation. Alternaria spores can be detected from Spring through late Fall in most temperate areas, and can reach levels of thousands of spores per cubic meter of air. While one usually thinks of molds as a problem in damp or even wet conditions, Alternaria spores can be at their highest concentrations during dry, windy conditions that are ideal for the spores to become airborne.
Alternaria is one of the most common outdoor molds, but also has been found in the indoor environment. The National Survey of Lead and Allergens in Housing conducted a study looking at house dust samples from 831 homes in 75 different locations throughout the US. Alternaria was found in over 90% of those dust samples. While much of that allergenic load was probably due to outdoor Alternaria finding its way inside, Alternaria is known to grow on moist surfaces in the home as well.
Alternaria is known to be a problem in allergic disease. In patients who show allergy to molds, up to 70% of those patients demonstrate allergy to Alternaria, and Alternaria is known to be a risk factor for asthma. Dampness and mold problems have been reported to occur in 20 – 50% of modern homes. Additionally, keep in mind that mold spores often outnumber pollen spores by 1,000 to one, and mold can produce spores for months on end, versus the weeks of pollen production by many allergenic plants.
For the 6th Year straight, we’ve won the Angie’s List Award for our service industry. NO other company we compete against has ever won the award four times, and we’ve won it 6 consecutive years, setting the standard in disaster restoration like no other.
The most common issue in a bathroom is the fact that they have no or very poor ventilation, and thus become susceptible to mold growth. The location of an exhaust fan is also crucial, as most are located in the center of the room. This causes the steam from a shower to have to make it way around the room before having a chance to be exhausted. By that time, there’s too much steam and the build up is more than the exhaust can handle. Other times, the exhaust itself is too small or doesn’t function properly. In bathrooms that have these issues, or in cases where you may not even have an exhaust, the excess steam will eventually cause mold and will require remediation. Even if mold remediation is performed, if the ventilation issue is not corrected, the mold will once again return no matter what paint or other building materials you use. So, to avoid this type of mold issue in your bathroom, you have to have proper exhaust and it should be located right above the shower.