Although we do not run into this problem here in Arizona near as often as some of the more humid areas of the country, mold damage is a problem that we do see from time to time. This will almost always be the result of water damage, flooding, plumbing failures or poor ventilation in humid areas like bathrooms. Whatever the cause, this is an issue that should be taken seriously due to the ill affects mold can have on your health.
Mold damage is a problem that although seems pretty strait forward to handle, is much more complicated to deal with than most people realize. There is a lot of misconceptions when it comes to correctly removing mold and it is very important to be properly educated if this situation were to arise. Contrary to popular belief, simply spraying the mold with bleach or scrubbing it off is not sufficient and highly discouraged. This might kill the mold but it does not combat the containment containing spores that will now be released throughout the home. As a restoration company we hear this suggestion thrown around regularly but in almost all situations this will only spread the containment containing spores which will leave you in a worse situation then before. Attempting to remove mold without the proper equipment and training is a recipe for disaster.
In order to properly re-mediate mold it is critical to have the right equipment on hand and follow the correct procedures. First and foremost air quality test should be used to determine what mold is present and if it is at unsafe levels relative to an outside bench mark. This will dictate the proper method of removal. If so containment barriers and air scrubbers with hepa filters should be setup to contain and catch any airborne contaminants that might be present. Proper ppe equipment should be worn at any point you are in the affected area and a decontamination chamber should be used to remove ppe equipment and prevent the spread of contaminants to unaffected areas of the home. Next any porous materials that have visible growth on them will need to be removed. This could include drywall, baseboards, flooring, insulation and more. When these materials have been removed, a very thorough cleaning will need to be performed with a hepa vacuum. All wood studs will need to be scrubbed with antimicrobial wipes until all mold growth has been removed. A thorough coating of antimicrobial solution should be sprayed in the contained areas especially where the mold growth was present. It is not a bad idea to come back the next day and do a final once over and another spray of antimicrobial solution. Every foot of the contained area should be thoroughly vacuumed to capture any contaminants.
At the conclusion of the remediation, it is very important to have another air quality test performed to make sure your efforts were successful. This should be done after the air scrubber has been running at least 24 hours to allow it to have sufficient time to catch any air borne particles that could still be present. The air scrubber should remain running until the tests have confirmed that an elevated mold conditions no longer exists. At this time the containment barriers and air scrubber can be removed.
This type of repair and clean up should only be attempted by a trained restoration company. In most situations the price to acquire the equipment needed to perform the repairs will exceed the cost of having a professional do the repair anyways. Good Times Restoration is a full service restoration company that is ready to help. From the remediation to the reconstruction we are a one stop shop for this type of repair. We offer 24/7 emergency service and would be happy to assist with any of your mold remediation, water damage, or reconstruction needs.