Mold on walls

Mold Removal Rochester, NY

Mold Removal Rochester, NY

The full process of Mold Removal (also known as Mold Remediation)!

 In this comprehensive post, we'll go over;

  • Mold Inspection
  • Lab Testing & Results
  • Mold Removal Process
  • How to prevent mold from returning
  • Mold Removal - Can I do it myself or should I leave it to the pros?
Mold Removal

Mold Inspection

Mold Inspection

The holidays are finally over, you’re sitting back and finally able to relax…then you notice it. There is a strange odor. You didn’t smell it during the holidays with all the cookies, candles, and Christmas tree smells.

But you know it is there, that strange funky smell like mold or mildew. The one problem? You can’t seem to find it. You can’t really pinpoint where the odor is coming from.

At this point, you figure it’s time to have a mold inspection conducted and then the likely mold removal.

After doing your research, it could be in the air or even worse – in the walls or under the carpet. A certified mold inspector is going to be your best bet in this situation to find it.

Finding the mold can be tricky, especially when you are unable to see it and can only smell it. The mold inspector will likely start with a visual inspection.

They will go to the areas where mold is commonly found. These spaces can include kitchens, bathrooms, basements, attics, and crawl spaces.

If upon the visual inspection, no mold can be found by the certified tech, then the mold is likely within the walls or flooring systems.

At this point you get a little nervous, you are not prepared to have walls and floors torn apart. The good thing, mold inspectors can do air testing which can help determine what room the mold may be coming from.

Indoor air sampling can take a little longer for results to come back, but it does help in getting closer to the area with mold.

Lab Testing & Results

Mold Lab Testing

The results have come back from the air sampling, and it is determined the mold is somewhere near the bathroom.

The inspector can cut open a small enough space behind the toilet that would be easy to check for mold growth.

At this time, the inspector will use a variety of tools to find the mold. He will use moisture meters, video cameras, and other types of mold inspection equipment.

The camera allows him to find mold growing in the drywall behind the toilet. It seems there has been a small leak back there for quite some time.

To determine what kind of mold is growing, he will then take a small sample of the mold itself to send in for lab testing.

Each sample will be labeled with a unique number that will reference the location of the sample and then sent into a dedicated lab for testing.

Lab testing can be completed quickly, in some cases within 24-hours. Additionally, since the mold was found in the air sample, he will also send other samples from various surfaces in the bathroom.

Surfaces can include other walls, a sink, counters, and around the bathtub.

There are diverse ways to take samples for surface testing. There is surface tape testing, where the inspector will use tape and stick it to surfaces where mold may be.

These tape samples can pick up anything that may be harmful to you or your family. Also, there is surface swab testing.

This is an actual swab that would be used on an area and sent back to the lab for further testing.

Another air test should be conducted now that mold has been found in a specific space. In most cases, air samples are analyzed for up to 18 various kinds of mold.

Not all mold is harmful or toxic, however, after long enough exposure there can be health side effects. Many people think if there is mold, then it is all bad.

That isn’t always the case. The results from the sampling will allow the inspector to assist in the right plan of action and how to take care of it.

If the mold were to be toxic, there are different precautions that must be done before anything else is taken care of.

Mold Removal Process

Your mold inspector has determined there is a need for full mold removal from a mold removal expert.

Not all mold inspectors are certified in mold removal. You may begin collaborating with another company for this next process. In most cases, the mold inspector will be able to provide you with a full report to give to the Mold Remediation specialist.

Using this report, the mold removal expert will already know where the mold is and if it is toxic or not. Every mold remediation job requires the use of safety measures.

Even though not all mold is toxic, it is a safety standard to wear protective equipment. This includes respiratory protection for the nose and mouth, but most experts will wear a full breathing mask that covers the entire face for max protection.

Most will also wear a type of jumpsuit to protect their clothing and can be disposed of when finished with the project.

Gloves are also always worn as to not transfer to the skin of the mold remediation specialist.

The first step the mold removal expert will do is contain the area. In this case, it is a bathroom.

The containment process is important as it keeps the mold from spreading to other mold-free areas of the home. This will likely look like the room being blocked off with heavy-duty plastic that is taped up to prevent contamination.

People who choose to take care of mold removal on their own usually forget this particularly crucial step.

When you start trying to clean or remove mold, the spores will be released into the air of your home. Whether the mold is toxic or not, it can be harmful to your health if not taken care of properly.

Also, now the mold is being spread to other areas of your home causing more problems.

Once the area has been contained, a special air filtration system will be installed during the remediation process. This will help to clean the air and remove the mold spores.

Since microscopic mold spores are released into the air during the removal process, the air system will remove those spores right away through a vacuum-type system that will bring the spores out of the home safely.

At this same time, all surfaces are removed from the area that has mold growth or mold damage. This includes any wood, drywall, counters, and other surfaces.

Various fungicides, mildewcides, biocides, cleaners, sanitizers, sealants, and stain removers are used to kill and clean up the mold.

The area will also be treated to help prevent the mold from being able to grow back in that same space.

It is important to remove all the areas that have been contaminated before trying to kill the mold. Mold can be very damaging.

Post Mold Testing & Restoration

After the Mold Remediation experts have finished cleaning up the mold, it is highly recommended to have a post-mold removal inspection.

It is also recommended to have this completed by a 3rd party to avoid any bias. This should be completed within 24-48 hours of the completion of the mold cleanup.

It is not recommended to have this done any more than 5 days after the completion. This should also be conducted before any contamination protections or air filtration systems have been taken down or removed from the home.

Finally, you get the clearance of all mold being removed from the bathroom.

Now it is time to restore. This can include replacing any structural damage like walls, ceilings, or floors.

First things first though are to stop whatever caused this issue in the first place. Upon the initial inspection, it was determined a leaky pipe behind the toilet was the culprit.

Fixing the leak should be the first step in restoration. Hiring a contractor may be necessary if the remediation/inspection company does not complete the restoration process.

Once the issue has been resolved, time to remodel! New walls mean a new fresh coat of paint.

It would be recommended to use paint that has a mold-killing enhancer that can help prevent mold growth again.

Mold Prevention Tips

  • Do your own home mold audit. Check frequent problem areas for mold often.
  • Fix leaks immediately, don’t wait until the problem gets worse.
  • For any areas with excess moisture, dry it out immediately. Use a dehumidifier if necessary.
  • Be sure areas are properly ventilated (bathroom, laundry room, kitchen)
  • Use mold-resistant products such as kilz paint and mold-resistant drywall.
  • Monitor the amount of humidity in your home, as well as improve indoor airflow.
  • Direct groundwater away from your home using a trench or other methods to keep from collecting in basements or crawl spaces.
  • Be sure your roof is not leaking and fix any leaks if necessary. Also, keep gutters cleaned and maintained.
  • Prevent condensation (insulate pipes, keeps windows/doors closed while AC is on)
  • Keep mold off household plants and other surfaces. Clean it up as soon as you see it on small surfaces (plants, caulking in kitchen or bathroom).

In conclusion, it is always recommended to have a professional come out to inspect and test your property for mold.

Rock Environmental, Inc is certified in the state of New York for Mold Remediation.

If you or someone you know have had concerns over mold, call our Rock Environmental professionals at 585-340-6799. Or click the button below to send us a message!

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