Mold is common to find outdoors, but under the right conditions can also grow indoors. Pennicillium is a common mold found outdoors, and does not pose a health risk. Some molds produce myco toxins and can be hazardous to your health. Toxic mold such as stachybotrys chartarum, when exposed to high levels for long periods of time can lead to neurological problems and even death. Mold can cause respiratory problems, nasal and sinus congestion, difficulty breathing, etc.
Mold thrives in areas where there is a lot of moisture, and on materials that are good hosts such as wood, drywall, insulation, fabrics etc. It can be found in duct work as well, so it is good practice to clear air ducts regularly. Mold is a big problem in areas with high humidity, not particularly here in Colorado. That does not mean it cannot grow under the right conditions. It usually has a musty odor and looks fuzzy. It can be black, green, pink, or yellow in most cases but we have seen orange, and even red mold. If you have had a roof leak, toilet overflow or any type of water damage to your home that was not properly cleaned up and dried out, this could cause mold to grow in those areas. Another common are to find mold is in the bathrooms with poor or no ventilation. The steam from showers causes condensation that sits on the walls and over time can cause mold to appear on the surface. Mold can grow with in 24 hours under the right condition and thrives in warm temperatures.
To re-mediate mold we call in a licensed hygienist who takes air samples to determine how high of a count we are dealing with, they then write a protocol of what needs to be done to clean the affected area and get the air quality back to safe levels. Usually, the process includes setting up containment in the affected area to prevent cross contamination with unaffected rooms in the dwelling. We then set up an air scrubber, which we exhaust outdoors to create negative air pressure and basically pump out the mold pores. Wearing the proper P.P.E. tyuek suits, respirators, and gloves; we then demo the moldy drywall, wood, carpet, etc. If the mold hasn’t penetrated the surface we can simply vacuum it with a special hepa vac and wash the area with an antimicrobial cleaner. Once the area is demoed and cleaned up we continue to filter the air and run a leaf blower through the area to ensure we have gotten any dust, or debris out of the area, this process is called air washing. Once air washing is complete we shut our machines down and call back the hygienist for new air samples and an inspection to ensure the job was done properly ad is safe for the customer to return. Also, it is recommended to clean the HVAC system as, it can be affected by mold spores as well.
In conclusion mold can really wreak havoc on your home so taking a proactive approach is the best way of dealing with it. If you ever suspect mold in your home or business don’t hesitate to call a professional to do an inspection. The sooner you catch it, the less damage it will do to both your home and your health.