Mold damage can be hazardous to your health
Mold or Mildew is a fungus that needs water to thrive. Fungi live on organic material and materials that are wet and in relatively dark places. Paint has organic materials in it. So mildew and mold loves to eat and live off of paint. Most often it goes unnoticed until it actually starts to dominate the area. You can notice it when just starting by the pen point sized dots of black specks. When it is wide spread it appears to look like sooty black film that can be destructive to the structure of your building by attacking the surface and weakening the UV protestants and breaking down the water barrier of the paint itself. Not to mention the interior effects the mold can have on the air purity and many times infecting your family or employees making them sick.
On Exterior Surfaces, mildew is unsightly and destructive.
On Interior Surfaces, in addition to being unsightly and destructive, mildew is unhealthy.
Needless to say Mold and mildew are not to be ignored.
Splash Painting LLC has been effectively removing mold and mildew for years.
If you are planning to paint or restore a home that has suspected mold present:
You will need to evaluate the extent of the problem and condition that has allowed a damp environment to exist. Having a dehumidifier will often eliminate the moister that has allowed the mold to establish it’s presents. Although, that doesn't get rid of, or kill the mold as it can lay dormant for years. If the moister is caused by, a leaking foundation faulty gutters or structural damage the problem is more difficult, as the mold continues to thrive until the water is stopped. Mold tests by themselves cannot give you the full picture although when combined with evaluating to the extent of intrusion, you can better determine the extent of the problem. Since mold tests can be expensive, and usually tell you only what you already know, it is usually best to find the source of the moisture and to try fixing the water or moisture problem before resorting to a mold test. This will be a big help in the restoration process.
There are some techniques that identify what species of molds are present:
This is helpful since some mold species will pose a greater health risk than others. From observations and research over the past 65 years, tells us one should not handle materials contaminated with S. chartarum (without proper safety procedures) and strongly indicates that indoor environments contaminated with S. chartarum are not healthy, especially for children, and many cases result in serious illness or even death. If you have any questions or intend to remove the mold, call your local or state health office for information.
Some common mold found in structures:
Stachybotrys chartarum (atra) Stachybotrys is usually black and slimy in appearance. This mold can thrive on water damaged, cellulose-rich material such as sheet rock, paper, ceiling tiles, insulation backing, wallpaper, etc. In most cases when Stachybotrys is found indoors, the water damage has gone unnoticed or ignored. Stachybotrys requires extended periods of time with increased levels of moisture for growth to occur. When water is forced into the air quickly it tends to support the growth of fungi such as Pencillium and Aspergillus. Pencillium and Aspergillus can be damaging to the kidneys / liver, and it is a suspected carcinogen. There is also evidence supporting its role in impairing immune system function. Fusarium spp. is found in humidifiers, water-damaged carpets, and a variety of other building materials and is frequently involved with eye, skin, and nail infections. More severely it can produce hemorrhagic syndrome (alimentary toxic aleukia) in humans which is characterized by nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, dermatitis, and extensive internal bleeding. Zearalenone is another mycotoxin produced by Fusarium. It is similar in structure to the female sex hormone estrogen and targets the reproductive organs.
Checklist for Cleaning Mold
For the best protection, choose a respirator designed for particle removal such as the model N95 or TC-21C particle
Wear protective clothing that is easily removed, cleaned, and will cover the whole body to prevent against any skin exposure. Other protective equipment that should worn are rubber gloves and eye goggles.
Seal off areas by hanging plastic sheeting to separate the work area from the rest of the structure. Place plastic over heat ducts sealing off the area that you are working in, to prevent spores from traveling through the ductwork into other parts of the structure.
Ask everyone to leave the area during cleanup that is not a part of the clean-up. Anyone in a high risk group that would have adverse health effects from the exposure to mold should stay away until the cleanup is finalized.
Work in Short Intervals when the damage requires many hours of cleanup, rest in a fresh air location to help prevent long term ex poser.
Be sure to enclose all moldy materials in sealed, plastic bags before disposal.
Remove the work clothing inside the work area, and wash it separately or bag it for disposal.
Air out and dry the area after the prose's is cleaned and finished. It may be helpful to use fans and dehumidifiers to accelerate the drying process being careful not to push any leftover spores to new areas.
Now it is time to kill all leftover spores. This process may take a few times and it's always a good idea to clean duct work and furnace and air filters to keep the spores from spreading throughout the project.
Before reinstalling construction materials it is wise the make sure the water problem is fixed by testing for moisture and spraying chemicals that will inhibit the future growth of mold.
Note: Paints and additives have came a long way in a short time, and now offer mold inhibitors that can help prevent mold issues in the future. Some additives you can simple add to regular paints. Behr, and some other high end products actually have mold growth inhibitors right in the paint itself.
Once mold infests the home:
It can be very time consuming and expensive to clean up. To make matters worse, many home insurance companies are denying mold claims. Mold infestation can cause the value of your home or building to drop tremendously and if you plan to sell it must be disclosed. If the mold has not been cleaned properly through rigorous efforts, it may not even be inhabitable for you to live in. Mold causes strong allergic reactions in many people and when those exposed have vulnerable immune systems, it can also cause neurological problems, infections, and respiratory side effects.
Have the HVAC system turned off and cleaned properly to contain the areas not already spread throughout the project, have a respirator, protective clothing, rubber gloves, and eye goggles. The surface needs to be lightly misted with mold killing agents and then cleaned in all affected areas to kill and remove as much mold as possible. Then apply a disinfectant to kill mold spores that are left behind. Thoroughly clean all surfaces that contains visible mold, even surfaces that do not have signs of visible mold, since mold spores are microscopic and very durable, and can remain dormant for months or even years. If the mold growth is severe, you may need to evaluate and remove the molded areas.
Splash Painting LLC will inform you if Mold hazards are visually suspected.