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Got Mold? - Steps for Homeowners

Discovering or being concerned about mold in your home can be overwhelming, but there's no need to panic. Mold and mold spores are everywhere, and as long as there is sufficient moisture, mold can form.

 

At Murrieta Mold Inspections, we understand the importance of addressing mold issues promptly and responsibly. The sooner the mold source is address, the more cost effective the solution. 

 

In this guide, we will explain what homeowners should do when faced with mold concerns, provide insights into mold prevention, DIY cleaning products, and highlight the significance of a professional inspection and remediation process. Following EPA recommendations, we emphasize the significance of a professional mold inspection when mold exceeds 10 sqft.

 

Our goal is to ensure your home becomes a safe and healthy living environment.

What to do when mold is discovered
Follow these steps to make your mold problem as painless as possible.

1 - Mold and Moisture - A Common Pair

Understanding that mold and mold spores are omnipresent, their growth is controlled by addressing moisture issues. Lowering moisture levels is crucial in mold prevention. 

  1. Use exhaust fans in the kitchen and bathrooms

  2. Ensure the HVAC system is controlling the climate in the affected areas

  3. Install and exhaust vents in all bathrooms and other rooms that are prone to moisture.  Be sure they are exhausted outside of the home.

2 - DIY Cleaning

The EPA recommends a professional mold remediation when visible mold growth exceeds 10 square feet.  For perspective, that is slightly larger than a 3 foot by 3 foot square of mold contamination.

  1. Wear an N-95 mask and rubber/latex/nitrile gloves

  2. Use a product that is rate by the EPA to kill mold and mold spores.  We prefer Bioesque as it is plant based and nontoxic.

  3. Read and follow the instructions.  Disinfectants are rated to kill various microbes when CONTACT TIMES ARE FOLLOWED.  

3 - Professional Inspection

For larger mold infestations exceeding 10 sqft, a certified mold inspector is recommended. The EPA advises against sampling unless there is a specific reason to know the exact species and quantities present.

 

The inspector will provide a thorough assessment of the mold situation and offer a detailed report with recommended next steps, often suggesting remediation.

4 - Removal Process

Remediation involves removing mold and mold-contaminated materials. A practice not unlike the concept mentioned in ancient times of removing contaminants from towns and disposing of them properly.  

From the book of Leviticus 14:45:

"The house is to be torn down—its stones, timbers, and all the plaster—and taken out of the town to an unclean place."

5 - Drying Process

To prevent further mold growth, thorough drying of the affected air and building materials is critical.

 

Depending on the amount of moisture, this process could take several days to remove all the necessary moisture.

 

This step ensures moisture levels are below the thresholds necessary to support mold growth.  This is typically 16% or below in lumber.  Relative humidity should also be under 60%.

6 - Certification of Remediation

A second inspection by the mold inspector is critical to certify that mold conditions have returned to condition 1 level. This ensures that rebuilding or replacing materials will not facilitate additional mold growth.

At this point, your home will have exposed construction materials.  You will be eager to replace the removed materials, but its better to verify the work completed by the remediation contractor now than to find out moisture was still an issue after completing the rebuilding of the home.  

Conclusion

When it comes to mold concerns at home, following a structured and professional approach is essential. From initial inspection to remediation and reconstruction, addressing mold issues responsibly ensures a safe and healthy living environment for you and your family.

 

Contact Murrieta Mold Inspections today for expert guidance and effective solutions.

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