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If you have elevated levels of mold in your home or business, hiring the professionals at American Catastrophe Emergency Services will help ensure the problem is handled correctly. Indoor mold growth can be harmful one’s health and must be handled properly. We know exactly what needs to be done!
Mold Inspections and Mold Assessments
Mold Inspections can either be performed directly by a restoration company or by a third-party mold inspector. In a perfect world there is no difference as to who performs this, so long as the inspector is qualified to do so.
Recently, certain states have made regulations in the mold industry that prohibit performing a mold assessment and remediation on the same job. The reason for this is that there is a possible conflict of interest.
The inspector should be unbiased, and a restoration company has an incentive (getting a remediation job) to say there is a serious problem when there may not be.
The states that have added licensing for mold contractors include Florida, New York, Texas and the District of Columbia. Each of these states have different guidelines for what defines a mold assessment.
For example, the State of Texas requires a mold assessment by a Licensed Mold Assessment Consultant/Technician before and after a mold remediation take place whenever there is twenty-five square feet or more of contiguous mold. Did you know in the State of Florida allows a restoration company to give an estimate whenever there is visible mold, they simply cannot test their own job before or after if they perform the remediation.
Mold growing inside a building is a serious situation that requires immediate action. It is a common problem for home and business owners to have because it can occur any time there has been a water leak, flooding, condensation, or poor ventilation. Once alive and growing, mold colonies can cause chronic respiratory and sinus illness in building occupants.
If you see discolored areas on the walls, ceiling, or carpet, you know you have a mold problem. Other red flags that signal mold is flourishing in your inside environment include a musty odor or a feeling of dampness in the air. Luckily, help in the form of professional mold remediation from American Catastrophe Emergency Services Group is only a phone call away.
Mold Removal vs. Mold Remediation
Some mold removal companies specialize in just that: removing the existing mold you see in your home. While this service may seem affordable at first glance, it will cost more in the long term, as you continue to battle mold in the future. A simple removal of the existing mold on the surfaces of your home is not enough. Without cleaning the air of spores and addressing areas of moisture where they can land and grow, your mold problem is certain to return eventually.
Mold remediation is a more holistic process in which our technicians employ knowledge of the life cycle of the mold species to prevent it from reestablishing itself. Besides removing existing mold from the air and surfaces, we also inspect your home for sources of water damage and high humidity levels. Since it is scientifically impossible to remove all spores from the air, we focus on creating a plan to return them to the same natural levels as healthy, outdoor air.
If you are doing your research on indoor mold growth, you have likely come across some information on mold testing. These tests can be performed by a mold inspector, before a job is started to:
- Determine if a problem exist
- Find a source of an issue
- See what areas are
Tests are also taken at the end of a mold remediation to confirm a job has been completed correctly. This typically called clearance testing a Post Remediation Verification Testing. Here is a brief overview on how mold testing is performed and what it accomplishes.
These mold tests are taken with a vacuum pump and a spore trap. The spore trap is basically a plastic cassette with a lab slide that has adhesive on it. The vacuum pump sucks air into the spore trap, and any mold spores in the air stick to the slide. These cassettes are sent into a third-party laboratory, preferably one that is AIHA accredited, where they are opened and analyzed.
The standard procedure is that an outside control sample is taken and compared to various inside air samples to see if abnormal or “elevated” conditions exist.
Direct samples can be taken with a swab or tape lift when visible mold is present. This is helpful to the inspector because not all mold, including Stachybotrys, is easily airborne. It is very possible to have visible mold and not have an airborne mold problem, especially in water damage related mold growth that has recently started to colonize. These samples are used as proof for the inspector to make the correct recommendations and useful to help determine if the species is surface mold or deep rooted into a material.
The mold inspector will then take these lab results and make recommendations of them along with what they saw on the visual inspection. Ultimately the inspector is performing mold tests to determine if:
- There is a mold problem or not
- What or where the source is
- How far has the problem spread
- What needs to be done to fix the issue.
This one is easy; water gets into a building envelope in a place that it is not supposed to be which is generally anywhere outside of a sink, toilet, or shower.
- Rising Waters / Flooding
- Poor Grading – Water Going back to a home instead of away from it.
- Foundation Cracks• Pipe Break or Leak
- Sink/Toilet Overflow
- HVAC Problem
- Fires / floods
If you have mold & water damaged on building material due to water intrusion, you almost certainly have to remove all materials unless it is in an unfinished it’s in an area like a basement or attic that might not have drywall to remove. It is possible that a mold test shows normal levels before beginning work, but air scrubbers are typically used during and after work. This is because the mold colonies are disturbed when removing the material, you actually end up with more mold in the air then when you started. The air filtration removes those mold spores and gets the air quality back to normal.
Water Vapor / Excess Moisture
When humidity levels rise, building materials and personal belongings within a property absorb the that is created. Mold spores land and grow on these areas to feed on the water and organic nutrients and begin to colonize. These types of problems are often harder to diagnose because it can often be widespread or at least throughout an entire room and you can’t always point at a specific area and say that is where this problem is coming from.
- Vacant Home
- Insufficient or Broken HVAC/Dehumidifier
- Ducts Pulling in Hot Air
- Lack of Insulation
- Failure to Use HVAC
- Lack of or Improper Ventilation
These types of issues do not always call for building material to be removed as the mold you see can be classified as “surface mold”. When caught early enough, this can simply be wiped away and air scrubbers can be set to filter out the excess mold spores.
In the event the problem goes undetected or ignored and the mold begins to colonize, it can become deep rooted into building materials and personal belongings to the point they become damaged. Under these circumstances these circumstances building material must be removed as the growth will likely come right back if it is wiped away.
Using air filtration systems like air scrubbers and ULV Fogging is of the utmost importance for these types of issues. Many people experience this type of problem and cannot fathom why the mold comes back after they clean it up.
The reason for this is that the concentration of mold in the air is so high that you must address both the visible mold and the mold you cannot see; remove the excess mold from the air to get back to acceptable conditions and fix the moisture problem to have a complete mold remediation.
Mold Removal & Remediation logistics
No two homes are exactly alike, and we take pride in catering our process to your unique situation. Here are the basic steps we follow in the process of mold remediation, so you will know what kind of quality service to expect. Once either a restoration company or a third-party mold inspector has verified a property is in need of mold remediation a protocol or work plan is put together to perform a mold remediation and remove the problem. If you like most people, you are not familiar with how this is done. Here we will explain various steps of the process so you can understand why each item is necessary when looking at an estimate. As certified, highly experienced mold experts, we work 1-on-1with our clients to create a custom plan to remove mold from your home or business. We provide quotes and work quickly to get your project completed so your home will be back to safe, working order in as little time as possible.
Mold is common in certain climates -toxic spores will grow under the properv circumstances. There are over 300,000 types of molds. (1) The most important criteria for removing mold is knowing if the mold is airborne or not. A common mistake is trying to remove mold and causing it to spread in the air through ventilation and fan circulation. Our professional mold remediation strategy includes identifying the type of mold (is it airborne, toxic, restricted to one area of growth) and making sure steps are taken to clean the air and remove the mold infested surfaces and materials.
When a mold infestation takes over a residential or commercial building, property owners often call a restoration company specializing in the mold remediation process. Learn more about our 7-step mold remediation process here
- Answer Your services Call,
- will Inspect the Home and Assess Damage
- Find the source of the moisture / Seal off the contaminated area.
- Suppress dust / Filter the Air / Reduce moisture using HEPA air scrubbers and dehumidifiers.
- Remove Mold and Infested Building Materials.
- Clean Building Contents and Personal Belongings
- Restore the damaged area.
Our Recommended Action plan for Mold Mitigation
Step 1: Call us at (888) 832-4139, We are waiting on standby for Emergencies calls
Once you, contact us within 15-20 mins A member of our customer service department will respond to ask you a few questions to get a better idea of the type of emergency response you have and the extent of the damage it has caused. Within 45mins to a 1 hour, we will assign a team of professionals to your property that was compromised. (Extra sensitive issues that need Emergency Response directly fill out our Emergency service Call form now!)
Step 2: Answer Your services Call, will Inspect the Home and Assess Damage
Once you suspect mold, contact us any hour of the day or night at (888) 832-4139. A member of our customer service department will ask you a few questions to get a better idea of the type of mold you have and the extent of the damage it has caused. Within 24 hours, we will assign a team of professionals to your case. Within one day of your call, expect the arrival of an operation manager to inspect your home or business for evidence of mold. We look in hidden areas that may not be obvious to the casual observer. We also collect samples of the mold to determine which species present through third-party laboratory cultures.
Step 3: Find the source of the moisture / Seal off the contaminated area.
Once the presence of mold is established, our first task is to keep it from spreading throughout the building. We turn off fans and air conditioning systems, and then isolate the area with negative air chambers and other physical barriers. These strategies help keep the mold in one place so we can eliminate it more easily.
Step 4: Suppress dust / Filter the Air / Reduce moisture using HEPA air scrubbers and dehumidifiers.
We clean your indoor air with a HEPA filter and powerful vacuums that essentially scrub the air until it is free from contaminants. This step is essential to removing spores and preventing the regrowth of mold. Our goal is to return the level of airborne spores to the natural level of the outside environment. Most customers notice an immediate improvement in air breathability.
Step 5: Remove Mold and Infested Building Materials.
We do the dirty work of disposing of building materials such as drywall, insulation, wallpaper, and carpeting that we cannot salvage through intensive cleaning. We clean all other contaminated structures with antifungal and antimicrobial treatments to remove existing mold and prevent new spores from establishing themselves.
Step 6: Clean Building Contents and Personal Belongings You can trust American Catastrophe Emergency Services Group to clean furniture, clothing, curtains, and other personal items inside your home or business. We use various techniques including wet and dry cleaning, foams, abrasions, and immersions, depending on the type of material. We also use fogging to remove the musty smell associated with a mold infestation. The items that can be cleaned and restored will then undergo specific cleaning processes determined by what the item is. There are several cleaning techniques we use; dry cleaning, wet cleaning, and deodorization are just a few of these techniques.
Step 7: Restore the Building to Pre-Mold Condition
The last step is to complete the restoration by installing sound building materials in place of the damaged ones. Depending on the level of infestation, reconstruction may involve rebuilding entire rooms or simply replacing panels of drywall, reinstalling wallpaper, or replacing portions of carpeting. We are not satisfied until there is no noticeable trace of a previous mold infestation.