Sunday, April 15, 2018
Thursday, May 11, 2017
How to Deal with Mold in Duct work
Mold is a nightmare to many homeowners especially the ones living in warm and humid places. It’s not only detrimental to our health but also can destroy your property. It can grow on almost any surface so long as food and water are present. You can find it growing in the basement, inside the walls, under carpet, on bathroom walls, and on any wooden surface. Rarely, mold can grow in your HVAC systems.
When mold grows in air ducts, it’s more dangerous than when it grows in any other place. Do you know why? This is because mold spores are blown away to other places every time the machine is running. The furnace of the air condition helps to circulate the spores through the air thus contaminated the whole house. This makes everyone in the house at risk of inhaling the spores which can cause serious health problems.
What are the effects of mold in air ducts?
Thousands of mold spores are blown away by the air condition. These spores contaminate the whole house putting everyone at risk of inhaling them. Every person who inhales them can suffer from mold symptoms. These symptoms may be either allergic or neurological symptoms. Allergic symptoms are mainly caused by non-toxic types of mold and include skin rashes, nasal congestion, rhinorrhea, eye irritation, difficulty in breathing, and chest congestion. Neurological symptoms, on the other hand, can include severe persistent headache, reduced attention, impaired thinking, drowsiness, numbness and tingling sensations, and loss of memory. Allergic mold symptoms appear when a person is in the contaminated room and disappear when he/she is outside.
Are there any Signs of mold in air ducts?
A homeowner can know when their air ducts are contaminated. The first sign of mold in air ducts is its characteristic musty smell. This is a pungent irritating smell produced by mold and mildew. When you sniff this kind of smell in more than one room or when your air conditioner is running, and you cannot locate it, you should immediately suspect that it’s hiding in the air con. However, the surest way to know that your air ducts are contaminated is by having a professional mold inspector inspect and test for it.
A professional mold inspector will inspect the whole equipment and locate it wherever place it may be hiding. He will collect air samples in different rooms to check the air quality. The samples will also be used to determine the type of the mold.
Why does mold grow in air ducts?
Actually, mold can grow in virtually any place with moisture and food. The food is derived from the material where it grows on or from dirt. Moisture comes from water leakages which increase humidity. Now when you fail to perform air duct cleaning for a while, dirt and moisture can accumulate in the ducts and stimulate mold growth. So mold grows in dirty duct systems which have been neglected for long. If you don’t clean the ducts, mold will continue to grow causing to mold problems. These mold problems will persist until when the source of moisture is repaired or eliminated and the ducts cleaned.
How to remove mold from duct work and stop the mold problems
The only way to stop duct work contamination is to have them cleaned and removed by a professional air duct cleaning company. Although you can do it yourself, the do-it-yourself methods may prove ineffective. Professional cleaning of mold in air ducts is recommended by the Environmental Protection Agency as special equipment are needed which an average homeowner may not have. Also, you may not have the necessary skills required in cleaning duct work and a slight mistake can damage the equipment. Additionally, you may not remove the entire mold which is risky as it continues spreading through the air.
[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="300"] Removal of Mold in Duct Work is Hard[/caption]
The ducts are cleaned with EPA-approved biocides which kill the mold. They are also coated with biocides to prevent future contamination.
How do you find the best air duct cleaning professional?
Mold remediation experts are trained to remove mold from every location. They have undergone extra training to help you with removing mold in duct work. However, not all of them are qualified to do the job. Some are just there to swindle money from innocent customers. However, there are some factors to check if you want to hire the best company. These include:
1. The company should have a good reputation in removing mold in duct work. You can prove this by checking their customers’ feedback on their website. If you find that the number of positive reviews is more than the negative ones, you can consider hiring the company but if the vice versa is true, just run away.
2. Look for a company which complies with regulations set by the National Air Duct Cleaners Association. Confirm this by asking for a proof of certification.
3. Cost. In this modern word where the cost of living is high, we cannot avoid this factor. We want to save as much as possible but still get quality services. So, look for an affordable company which does not break the bank. Ask for a written estimate to protect yourself from hidden costs and make sure that you compare at least three companies.
4. Licensed. Of course, the company should be licensed by the right body. You don’t want to hire illegal companies which are known to extort money from their customers. Once again, ask for a proof or check if the company is listed on the body’s website.
5. Experience. This factor cannot be left out. You don’t want to hire inexperienced people who may even damage your HVAC system. Ask for the years of experience and referrals.
6. Lastly, check how they handle customers. If they are rude when you ask some questions, please run away and find another company. There are other many companies with friendly staff.
[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="300"] All these including mold and mildew can be found in duct work[/caption]
The Bottom Line
The key to solving duct work mold problems is by performing regular air duct cleaning and eliminating moisture from your house. If you don’t correct the problem early enough, your entire house will be contaminated and you and your family will suffer the potential health effects. Hire the right people to do the job for you and you won’t be disappointed.
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Wednesday, March 15, 2017
Best Mold Removal Products
Many people take mold or fungus very lightly. They often don't consider it as a serious issue, unless it grows big, start smelling and causing health problems. There are adverse effects of not having mold removal done quickly. It could lead to unwanted health issues and some of these symptoms consist of allergies, asthma, and other respiratory problems.
Where does it grow?
As we all know that most of the mold growth takes place inside a wall or floor cavities. Typically, they are not visible and it becomes hard to determine the extent of its growth and origin. It requires proper inspection, assessment, and removal to avert any kind of future growth. Sometimes, it is difficult to detect the growth, as it can be right under your carpet, behind the wallpaper or dry wall or even hiding invisibly in HVAC systems.
How is it removed?
The process of eradicating mold from home can be successfully achieved by utilized several techniques. One of the techniques is dehumidification which involves the use of dehumidifiers. This can be effective but it may not completely kill the molds. Another technique is the use of mold removal products. These can be either organic products which are environment-friendly and are easily available at home. Organic mold removal products include baking soda and vinegar. The other kind of mold removal products is commercial products which have chemicals for killing mold.
In this article, I will look at the best products which are currently used and can effectively eradicate mold from your home.
Bleach is the most used mold removal product as it is easily available and affordable. According to Centers for Disease Control (CDC), using bleach can effectively remove mold from many surfaces but not porous ones. If you mix one cup of household bleach with a gallon of water, you can successfully remove several types of mold from non-porous surfaces. However, bleach doesn’t kill all types of mold and its fumes can exacerbate breathing problems like asthma.
2. Vinegar and Baking soda
If you want to go green, then Vinegar and baking soda are a good choice. Vinegar is less toxic than bleach and can be used to remove mold from many surfaces. A mixture of vinegar and baking soda is effective in eradicating black mold and doesn’t release toxic fumes in the air. To use this method, you simply mix a cup of vinegar with a couple of tablespoons of baking soda and use the mixture with a scrub brush to clean surfaces infested with mold.
Borax is still used to remove mold, as it is less toxic than mold and can successfully remove mold from porous surfaces. To use this product, you need to mix a solution of borax and water in a spray bottle and then spray the colonized surface. Allow the mixture to soak on the surface for like 15 minutes then wipe it off together with the mold. You can repeat the process to completely remove the mold.
This is a commercial product which is available in the market. Foster 40-80 can successfully remove many types of mold, bacteria, and fungi. This product is used by professionals for commercial use as it comes in five-gallon containers hence uneconomical for homeowners. It is an EPA-approved disinfectant which is ready-to-use when you buy it. It is usually used as a final resort for mold removal. It can remove mold from non-porous, semi0porous, and porous materials.
This is another EPA-registered product which is highly effective in mold removal. It’s affordable to many homeowners and can be the best alternative to bleach. It can kill molds and bacteria from many surfaces such as bathroom, sporting equipment, walls, and carpets. To use this product, mix one and half tablespoon of MoldSTAT Plus with one gallon of water. Apply the mixture to the mold infested surfaces and let it soak for 10 minutes. Wipe it together with the mold until the surface is clean. This product has a neutral scent and removes mold without bleaching the surfaces.
Concrobium is an EPA- registered product which kills mold on any surface. It eliminates existing mold and odor together with preventing further regrowth. It an effective product if you want to prevent any future mold regrowth. It is available as mold Control Spray, Mold control Aerosol, mold Stain Eraser and other formulations. This solution contains no ammonia, VOCs or bleach.
There are other many commercial products for mold removal such as Sporicidin which is specifically for mold removal after water damage. Choose a product is safe and effective against the type of mold you want to kill. Bleach will not kill mold inside porous surfaces so you have to use another alternative. Commercial products should be selected with caution as there are some with toxic chemicals.
Precautions when Handling Mold Remediation Products
It is important that you take some precaution measures when handling the above-discussed products since some of them are toxic and can bleach. Wear personal protective equipment like gloves, goggles, and gumboots to avoid exposure to them. Do not handle bleach if you have respiratory conditions like asthma.
Another precaution measure is ensuring that the room is well ventilated during the application process. Make sure that you read and follow all the directions of use. The directions also will guide you on how to do when exposed to the products.
These products may not be as effective as their manufacturers suggest. Sometimes the mold may be stubborn to remove. The mold also may have produced spores which remain suspended in the air. These spores continue growing and affecting people hence it’s necessary that you call professionals to deal with them. They will come with special equipment to completely remove them and also do some mold testing in other areas.
Make sure that you choose the best professionals if you can’t do it yourself. They can be found online. Read customer reviews which may give you some ideas whether they are reliable and experienced. Once you find the best company, contact the company to get a quote before the process begins.
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Thursday, March 9, 2017
Preventing Mold Related Health Issues
Mold can do damage to your home, and it can or will affect you as well. This mold causes symptoms that can start happening to your body, and sometimes they can be serious. You have to make sure that you do not have mold because you do not want your family to get affected by this. It can have worse effects in little kids because their bodies can not fight that well against it. These mold health problems can cause permanent damage to your system, and you may have to be put on medicine.
The problems that can start to show up in the form of headaches, dizziness, runny nose, itchy eyes, fevers, wheezing, sneezing, and it can make your eyes red. When the eyes are red, it can feel like it is burning and dry. It can also cause nasal congestion and coughing, which can start when you walk into your house. But these are not all of what it can do. It can get much worse. The worse problems are asthma, trouble breathing, and it can cause people with allergies to get much, much worse.
If you have allergies, hives and rashes can start to form all over your body, making you itch badly. What can make these problems even worse is that the black mold can get in the air, which is airborne mold. When that happens, it can or will get on and in everything in your home making it easier for it to get to you and in your body. When you have airborne mold spores, you have to have everything cleaned and cleaned well so that the mold will die. If you think you have an issue with mold and live within Houston, you must have mold testing done. a reputable Mold Inspection Houston Company can help.
If you have these symptoms, you might want to see your doctor and have your home checked and tested for mold. Do this even if you have the smallest symptoms or symptoms because it could be caused by mold, and it is better to be safe than sorry. There are other ways you can tell that you have mold just by the odors in your house. All it takes is that whiff of your nose to tell that because your nose can smell it. It can smell like a musty or a moldy smell, and it can be very strong. So if the air in your house smells funny, have your house checked and tested by the mold professionals and recommend to you ways to prevent mold from growing in your house.
How do you prevent mold from growing in your house?
You have to keep your family safe from this because mold can cause serious problems. Mold can grow within 48 hours after a flood or lots of water got spilled on the floor. That is why it is very important to keep your house dry and to clean up water fast when it is spilled. If it comes from a flood, you have to wait until the water is out and the house is checked.
If you have a lot of headaches, get your house checked for mold because that can be a sign of toxic mold in your house. You need to keep your house dry, and you can have a dehumidifier in your house to keep the moisture out and the mold as well. If you have a basement, keep that area dry because mold likes to grow down there due to it having dark areas, and moisture likes so set in down there. If you don't keep your house dry, mold can appear, and it can grow on cement, bricks, wood, drywall, carpets, and in the ceiling. Mold can get anywhere it wants to, and it can or will affect your family's health in time or just like that.
You can kill mold with bleach, which is good to scrub it in to kill all of it and clean the area that the mold was growing on. Make sure there are no spaces under the door from water to get under it because that can cause mold to grow under the carpet and under or on the floor. Make sure the roof is fixed so no water can drip through it because that can get on anything on your house and cause mold to grow on it. Check all pipes for cracks or to see if the seal around the pipes is good. Make sure that all the appliances are put in right, and the dryer has a hose on it because this will prevent mold growth.
Don't walk in the house with wet shoes because it will get the carpet all wet, and it will soak into the fabric of the carpet, which will cause mold. If you have a spill, clean it up right away and get it dry, so it will not soak in the carpet or on the floor. Don't lay wet clothes on the floor that can cause mold to grow because the water from the wet clothes can soak in the floor or the carpet will develop mold. If water gets on the carpet, it will lock in moisture and mold will start to form on it, and you will have to remove the carpet from your house, so mold will not set in.
Thursday, March 2, 2017
Molds are very tiny organisms which can be found growing on organic material such as soil, foods, and plant matter. They reproduce through spores, which spread through air, water, or by insects. These spores act like seeds, they form new mold growth when given the right condition. The key to preventing mold growth is to control all moisture problems. Extensive mold contamination may not just damage your home but as well as cause life-threatening health problems.
There had already been a lot of researches conducted which hold that allergies are commonly associated with mold. An allergy is a negative reaction of one's immune system to something that does not affect most other people at all. Usually, a person who has an allergy to one specific thing could also be allergic to some other things. There are several substances present in the environment we live in that could bring about allergic reactions. Examples of these are dust, food, fumes, stings, pills and even mold spores. Allergic reactions could be in the form of having a runny nose, rashes, swollen body parts, itches, repeated sneezes or asthma. Symptoms actually vary. Allergies usually make you feel very uncomfortable but are not usually fatal. However, studies proved that anaphylaxis is a severe allergic reaction which could actually endanger lives. Even people who do not have allergies could be badly affected when exposed to high concentration of mycotoxins. Other examples of allergic reactions associated to mold and mildew are nasal congestion, fatigue, hay fever, throat irritation, respiratory problems, and sensitivity to light.
Effects on Body Systems
Toxic mold greatly affect our body systems. Some toxic mold including Aspergillus, , Stachybotrys, and Trichoderma are able to produce mycotoxins which are capable of causing severe health problems. Toxic mold can increase your susceptibility to a wide variety of diseases by weakening your immune system. Eye irritations cause burning, reddening, watery, and sensitivity to light of your eyes; skin irritations cause dermatitis or skin rash, athlete's foot, or yeast infection. Nasal or sinus congestion will cause headache, runny nose, and coughing.
Exacerbation of Pre-existing Conditions
There are some individuals which may be more susceptible to health problems from mold exposure so they are more likely to experience exacerbations compared to others. These are individuals with current respiratory sensitivities (e.g., asthma, allergies, or emphysema) and with a compromised immune system (e.g., chemotherapy patients, HIV/AIDS infection, or organ transplant patients). These patients are also more potential for dangerous complications such as aspergillosis, dyspnea leading to apnea, alveolar collapse or cardiac arrest. Life-threatening conditions are more likely to occur in these patients.
For sensitive people, a simple contact or inhalation of even the tiniest mold or mold spores could cause asthma attacks. Anyone who is allergic to mold should avoid having contact with them. It is in fact alarming to know that when people with asthma are exposed to high amounts mold it could lead to death. Taking this in mind, homes with mold problems should be addressed as soon as possible.
Sufficient moisture gives mold spore a very good environment to grow and replicate. Moisture can be in the form of very high humidity, condensation, or water from a leaking pipe. Organic materials like ceiling tile, drywall, paper, or natural fiber carpet padding also aids in mold growth. Indications of a moisture problem may include discoloration, warping or condensation of the household surfaces. Obvious mold growth at home should be cleaned up as exposure to high amounts of mold is not healthy for anyone.
Prevention of Mold Growth and its Effects
It is always better to prevent illness rather than to cure them especially when they are already serious and life-threatening. Maintaining good health takes proper discipline which means maintaining a healthy lifestyle and environment. Making sure your home is mold-free is another act of health promoting behavior. The process of mold removal is typically known as remediation. It is called remediation because spores exist pretty much everywhere, and most of them are benign or they are in low enough quantities to be harmless. Therefore, they cannot all be completely removed. However, remediation refers to the process of reducing the number of spores to a safe level.
Professionals will come into your home and inspect it to determine the severity of your infestation. If the problem has not spread beyond one room of the house, they will section off that part of the house. They will physically remove mold. Isolating the affected room of the house prevents spores from spreading to other parts of the building.
After physically removing affected areas, they will kill it in hard-to-reach areas using chemical agents such as bleach, ammonia, borax, and vinegar. Some porous materials such as clothes, upholstery, and drywall might not be salvageable. Non-porous materials such as glass, metal, and plastic should be reusable after a thorough cleaning.
The professionals will then use a high-efficiency particulate air resistance (HEPA) filtered vacuum to clean up the spores and dry the air in the room. A dry environment will help prevent spores from returning.
In addition to seeking professional help, you as the homeowner must play your part. There are several preventive measures you can undertake such as;
- Dampness being one of the key factors in the growth of black mold, keeping an eye on the level of humidity that causes damp conditions can help to keep it at bay. You can do so by dehumidifying your home when humidity levels are high.
- Make sure that your air conditioners and ventilation ducts are cleaned regularly since it can grow in these places without your knowledge.
- Bathroom tiles, appliances, and curtains should be kept very clean since these are conducive to growth of black mold due to the high level of moisture content.
- Use of air purifiers can help contain it to a great extent.
As you can see, there are many ways to counteract its growth and adverse effects. By taking adequate measures to control this menace, quick action must be taken, especially to avoid being sick due to exposure to mold and its poisonous effects. If you notice you have mold, call a Certified Mold Inspection Company immediately.
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Monday, February 27, 2017
Mold is an integral part of our ecosystem. Mold helps break down organic matter, such as fallen leaves or banana rinds. While most strains of mold are not harmful to humans, there are a few that are toxic. Mold grows in areas of dampness and darkness. If you have mold growing in your home, you should take a sample to get tested. If the strand is toxic, you should receive an examination to check for any adverse health effects.
There are three major groups of mold. These are;
This type of mold doesn’t pose a major threat to humans but it can cause allergic reactions to those prone to allergies. It may cause eye and nose irritation, itchy throat and skin rashes. This mold can be quite serious to asthmatic patients as it exacerbates the condition.
This type of mold is more serious that the allergic one as it can cause several health conditions. It affects commonly the immune-compromised individuals especially those suffering from HIV/AIDS. It can cause respiratory conditions like hypersensitivity pneumonitis
This is the worst of all. The most popular I the black mold which is extremely dangerous as it can produce toxins which can severely affect your health. It can produce aflatoxins and mycotoxins which can cause brain damage, kidney damage among other problems.
Health Effects of Mold in Your Home
Toxic mold produces hazardous byproducts, called mycotoxins. Only two types of mold, Aspergillus and Stachybotrys, are serious health threats. The effects of long-term exposure to these two types of mold may vary. Asperigillus has been linked to the following illnesses:
• Liver problems
• Damage to brain, kidneys and heart
Stachybotrys exposure manifests different, and has been linked to several illnesses which target a person's respiratory system. Stachybotrys exposure is associated with:
• Recurring flu-like symptoms
• Respiratory conditions
• Difficulty breathing
It is impossible to determine whether or not a particular growth of mold is seriously hazardous. If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms, and you have seen or have reason to suspect mold growth, talk to your doctor about the potential for toxic mold poisoning.
Other Health Effects of Mold
Allergic reactions to mold are common — these reactions can be immediate or delayed up to six hours. The most common effects of mold exposure are allergic responses which include flu-like symptoms, fatigue, hay fever, infections, asthma and irritation of the eyes, tissues, skin, nose, throat or lungs which will usher into breathing difficulty, wheezing, prenumonia-like illness, nasal and sinus congestion. Reactions to allergens may vary depending on an individual's sensitivity. These effects may be minor at first but can still lead to medical crisis if left untreated.
Mold Irritant Symptoms
One of the most common troubles brought about by exposure to mold are the mold allergy symptoms. But this is not always the case. Exposure to mold could cause illnesses not accompanied by allergic reactions. Aside from irritants and toxic responses, mold could also cause infections. These infections brought about by mold can be the source of many other illnesses like pneumonia, flu and skin infections. An irritant reaction can have similar symptoms to an allergic reaction. Take note that the difference between the two is that symptoms of allergies become worse with each repeated exposure while the intensity of irritant reactions stay the same even when with several repeated exposure. Mold exposure can cause irritations to both people who are allergic to it and those who are not. Cleanliness should be observed in every house because loose mold particles that settle on different items in the house could be inhaled by people or even animals that lived there.
Control of Mold at Home
However, before you actually put up a fight against this little beast, you need to educate yourself a bit about it. One of the most important things to know is the reasons behind the growth of mold. When an environment is a mix of oxygen, water, nutrients, and favorable temperatures, it becomes a perfect place for mold to grow. As far as the nutrients are concerned, mold gets it from dead organic materials such as paper, wood, or even fabrics; it may also find nutrients in synthetic products like adhesives and paints. What it means is that if you have sewage line or any pipe leaking in your bathroom, it may become a suitable place for mold to grow quickly.
Though it is true that not all types of mold are dangerous, it is important to take necessary actions to ensure that it's not flourishing in any part of your house. It is so because you never know when you might be at the mercy of a dangerous type of mold, which can cause certain types of infections due to compromised immune system. With over 1000,000 types of mold, it's never easy for an average Joe to be absolutely sure of what they have growing in their houses.
Considering all this, it becomes important to get in touch with a professional that not only knows about different mold types but have clear ideas about removing it. But before you make a choice, it is crucial to take your time and select the best company offering mold testing services. You can make a good choice considering a few important points. For instance:
1. Make sure you conduct your research and select a few highly experienced companies to start mold remediation process. Since different types of mold can be there in your house, it's important for you to ensure that the specialist knows the best way to remove it without leaving any toxic effect in the air. Therefore, it's crucial to pay attention to the experience a company has in dealing with mold removal process.
2. Make sure you contact a number of companies and ask them to pay a visit to the premises. Once they have had a look at your house, they will tell you how severe the matter is. Not only this, they will also be in a position to tell you about the money you will have to spend to get your house cleaned properly.
The thing is that the presence of mold can be dangerous to your health; therefore, you should take some precautionary measures and ask a professional to help you get rid of this little menace.
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