The Ultimate Guide to Mold Removal
We all desire to feel safe and comfortable within our homes, but that safety can abruptly be jeopardized by the presence of toxic mold. That’s why we have prepared this ultimate guide to mold removal for anyone looking to rid the infestation from their home or residence, wherever it crops up.
This is going to be important to reference as the rainy season comes along following this winter, so it’s best to be prudent and prepare when you can. Outside of simply ruining the look of your kitchen, bathroom, ceiling, or any of the other spaces mold tends to grow, the fungus also poses a danger to your home’s infrastructure. Mold damage on its own doesn’t cause the wood within your home to rot, but it does increase the wood’s ability to absorb moisture, which can make the wood more prone to other fungal growth which rots.
To make matters worse, mold also has the potential to detriment your health. Contrary to popular belief, it isn’t the mold itself that seriously hurts you. It’s the spores mold produces, called mycotoxins.
These are toxins that, when exposed to them, may cause certain health problems, especially to people who are sensitive to them. According to, this includes people who:
Have chronic lung disease
Have compromised immune systems
Have weak immune systems (infants, children, elderly)
If you’re a healthy individual, you’ll probably be alright when exposed to most mold spores, but you should know that prolonged exposure to them can begin to impact your health, causing coughing, wheezing, and other respiratory-related issues.
Presence of Mold after a Severe Weather Event:
Excess moisture and standing water contribute to the growth of mold in homes and other buildings.
Steps can be taken to prevent mold growth if wet items are cleaned and dried within 24 to 48 hours. Make sure you only enter your home once it is safe.
Signs of Mold:
Mold can be recognized by sight or smell or present no signs at all (hidden behind walls or under floors)
Sight (Mold growth often appears on walls and ceilings, looks like spots and can be many different colors)
Smell (You may smell a strong unpleasant musty, earthy odor)
People at Greatest Risk for Health Effects from Mold:
If you are allergic to mold, or you have asthma, allergies, or other breathing conditions, being around mold may make your condition worse.
If you have a chronic lung condition or a weak immune system (such as people with HIV infection, cancer patients taking chemotherapy, and people who have received an organ transplant), you could be more susceptible to mold infections in your lungs
Possible Health Effects of Mold Exposure:
People who are sensitive to mold may have a stuffy nose, irritated eyes, wheezing, or skin irritation.
People who are allergic to mold may have difficulty breathing or have shortness of breath.
People with weakened immune systems or chronic lung diseases may develop mold infections in their lungs.
If you or your family members have health problems after exposure to mold and you think that mold is affecting your health, please contact your doctor or other health care provider.
Cleaning Wet or Moldy Items after a Severe Weather Event:
When your home is safe to enter, dry out your home as quickly as possible to minimize mold problems and perhaps even prevent the growth of mold at all.
Water damage specialists or mold remediation companies have experience with cleanups of flooded homes and can provide you the peace of mind of knowing mold problems will be properly taken care of. At a minimum, a maintenance or service professional that is experienced in mold clean up should check and clean your home heating, ventilating and air-conditioning (HVAC) system before you turn it on. If the HVAC system was flooded with water, turning on the system may spread mold throughout the house.
Facts, Information and Resources
Molds are fungi that can be found in virtually every environment, indoors and outdoors, year round. No one knows how many species of fungi exist but estimates range from tens of thousands to perhaps three hundred thousand or more. Mold spores can survive harsh environmental conditions, such as dry conditions, that do not support normal mold growth.
Research has found that damp building conditions can lead to respiratory illnesses in occupants. Dampness in buildings can occur for a variety of reasons such as high indoor humidity, condensation, and roof leaks.
People who are sensitive to mold may experience stuffy nose, irritated eyes, wheezing, or skin irritation. People allergic to mold may have difficulty in breathing and shortness of breath. People with weakened immune systems and with chronic lung diseases, such as obstructive lung disease, may develop mold infections in their lungs. If you or your family members have health problems after exposure to mold, contact your doctor or other health care provider.
If you choose to use bleach to clean up mold:
Never mix bleach with ammonia or other household cleaners. Mixing bleach with ammonia or other cleaning products will produce dangerous, toxic and dangerous fumes.
Open windows and doors to provide fresh air.
Wear non-porous gloves and protective eye wear.
If the area to be cleaned is more than 10 square feet, consult the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) guide titled Mold Remediation in Schools and Commercial Buildings. Although focused on schools and commercial buildings, this document also applies to other building types. You can get it by going to the EPA mold remediation web site found in the resources section below.
Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when using bleach or any other cleaning product.
Keep humidity levels as low as you can—no higher than 50%–all day long. An air conditioner or dehumidifier will help you keep the level low. Bear in mind that humidity levels change over the course of a day with changes in the moisture in the air and the air temperature, so you will need to check the humidity levels more than once a day.
Use an air conditioner or a dehumidifier during humid months.
Be sure the home has adequate ventilation, including exhaust fans.
Add mold inhibitors to paints before application.
Clean bathrooms with mold killing products.
Do not carpet bathrooms and basements.
Remove or replace previously soaked carpets and upholstery.
The Ultimate Guide to Mold Removal and Prevention
How to Battle Mold and Mildew at Home
As discussed, mildew and mold can pose severe health risks to you, your family, and your pets, as well. Mold has been linked to allergic reactions and respiratory problems, as well as central nervous system disorders and cognitive dysfunction. However, it gets a lot worse than this. Mold spores are even worse than the mold you can see in the corner of your shower. Mold spores are invisible to the naked eye, yet they can fill your indoor air with toxins, which makes them incredibly dangerous.
So, what can you do to prevent mold from growing in your home? Well, there are several different strategies and approaches to consider. The first thing you need to recognize is the fact that mold loves areas that are humid, warm, and lack good ventilation. This is why you will often see mold growing in areas such as the basement and the bathroom.
Therefore, keeping your home dry is a must. There are several other things you can do, as well. This includes the following:
Make sure you replace mildewy shower curtains
Clean out air conditioning drip pans
Keep fabrics and other clothes dry
Open windows and doors to promote air circulation, especially while cooking or taking a shower
Let the sunlight and fresh air help kill mold
Clean up any spills straight away
Address any plumbing issues and fix any leaks
Invest in a dehumidifier for damp areas around the home
Black mold is the type of mold you are probably familiar with. This is a kind of fungus that has a very dark green or black appearance. It often comes with a very distinct smell. It is a damp, mildew, or musty smell. There are some different ways that you can get rid of black mold. A lot of people use the likes of ammonia and bleach-based cleaning products to get free of mold. However, there are also natural methods, which are always recommended because it is still best to act with the environment in mind. For example, you can create cleaning solutions using tea tree oil, vinegar, baking soda, hydrogen peroxide, or grapefruit seed extract.
How to Get Rid of the Mold on the Ceiling of the Bathroom?
Do you have mold on the ceiling in your bathroom? If so, it is essential to not only make sure you clean it, but make sure you clean it effectively! You need to ensure you get rid of all potential traces. If the mold on the ceiling of your bathroom covers ten-square-feet or less, this is deemed a small area, which means you will be able to take care of this by yourself so long as the right procedures are followed. However, you are advised to seek professional services if the mold covers a bigger patch than this.
Usually, we recommend a visual inspection before you spend the money on mold testing. If visible mold is present, testing is probably a waste of money.
What is Involved in a Visual Inspection?
A visual inspection is what it sounds like. You, or your inspector, should take a close look around for any sign of damage or potential for water intrusion. See the list below for some common things to look for.
Visible mold growth
Visible water staining
Water in the crawl space
Improper grading around house/office
Irrigation systems too close to building
Improper attic insulation or ventilation
High humidity levels
Leaks under sinks or in other areas
Keep in mind that this is only a partial list. A good visual inspection should give you a good idea of what is going on in your home or office with regards to water & drainage, air flow in the building, and the general state of any appliance or equipment that is likely to be an issue.
What To Expect
On the day of your appointment, we will connect with you over your smart phone or mobile device and walk you through the process. You can show us areas of concern, or simply walk through your home with us and allow us to inspect the space for potential problems.
Of course, some locations and situations may still require us to come out to your home in person, but because we have experienced so many different situations over the years, it is likely that yours isn’t unique. For most of our clients, we can identify problems, provide advice or, if appropriate, produce an estimate for us to do work in your home.