Recent Mold Remediation Posts

Why should you have Mold testing?

8/10/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Why should you have Mold testing? Air quality in your business or home can really affect how effective you and your employees function. Having good air quality can reduce sick days.

All this summer heat and humidity can take its toll on a lot of us. Many use AC inside their home to provide relief. Shutting up the house to hold it all in. That can result in very old stagnant air circulating. It can also provide ripe conditions for the things to grow in your duct work, or inside insulation that may have moisture from the condensation differences between the inside and outside temperature and humidity levels. 

Getting your home tested for mold can be a very wise investment to catch potential problems sooner rather than later.

Mold Testing

When to have an indoor air quality test done, and how the test is done. The word mold is not as bad as everyone thinks it is. The only time it becomes a problem is when there is too much of it. Too much mold can cause health problems or damage to your property. Not every home needs testing and not all testing is the same.

What sort of things should you be on the look for to decide if you need any mold testing.

  • Any general concerns about the house where something just does not seem right and you cannot put your finger on it.
  • When a home has been empty with no occupants for an extended period of time
  • Past water damage that was not cleaned up by a professional or you suspect was not done properly
  • No home inspections have been done in a while you see or suspect there is mold somewhere
  • A musty smell that is notice upon entering the home
  • Anyone in the home that has repertory problems
  • Mold Remediation was done and you want to ensure it was effective.
  • Visually seeing anything that looks like mold
  • If mold removal or clean up was done
  • When a 3rd party is effecting repairs and you need to make sure they are done correctly

There are 3 main options for testing

Surface Testing

                This is done to look for evidence of actual current or past mold growth. The tester will use either a swab or a tape lift to obtain their sample. These tests can tell if the growth is from actual water damage and intrusion or if it is excessively humid in the home. Dark and discolored growth is not always microbial and would mean it is not from a water damage situation. When you see visual growth it is always important to get a sample of it as well as an air quality sample to ensure spores have not been released into the air.

Indoor air quality testing

                This is done by taking numerous samples from within the inside of the home as well as a base line sample of the air quality on the outside of the home. These samples will be able to tell if you have hidden moisture leaks.

Indoor Air Quality with Comprehensive moisture evaluation.

                This testing is done to provide a full scope picture of what is really going on in the home. It is able to locate sources of moisture that overtime could damage the property or become a health concern. Mold and moisture damage can drastically affect the value of a home over time. So it is important to stay on top of things and help prevent any major damage. Identifying the damage early can save you in the long run.

Remember when you have any doubts or questions about mold in your home talk to a professional get your results and get it right the first time.

Why should you have Mold testing?

8/10/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Why should you have Mold testing? Air quality in your business or home can really affect how effective you and your employees function. Having good air quality can reduce sick days.

All this summer heat and humidity can take its toll on a lot of us. Many use AC inside their home to provide relief. Shutting up the house to hold it all in. That can result in very old stagnant air circulating. It can also provide ripe conditions for the things to grow in your duct work, or inside insulation that may have moisture from the condensation differences between the inside and outside temperature and humidity levels. 

Getting your home tested for mold can be a very wise investment to catch potential problems sooner rather than later.

Mold Testing

When to have an indoor air quality test done, and how the test is done. The word mold is not as bad as everyone thinks it is. The only time it becomes a problem is when there is too much of it. Too much mold can cause health problems or damage to your property. Not every home needs testing and not all testing is the same.

What sort of things should you be on the look for to decide if you need any mold testing.

  • Any general concerns about the house where something just does not seem right and you cannot put your finger on it.
  • When a home has been empty with no occupants for an extended period of time
  • Past water damage that was not cleaned up by a professional or you suspect was not done properly
  • No home inspections have been done in a while you see or suspect there is mold somewhere
  • A musty smell that is notice upon entering the home
  • Anyone in the home that has repertory problems
  • Mold Remediation was done and you want to ensure it was effective.
  • Visually seeing anything that looks like mold
  • If mold removal or clean up was done
  • When a 3rd party is effecting repairs and you need to make sure they are done correctly

There are 3 main options for testing

Surface Testing

                This is done to look for evidence of actual current or past mold growth. The tester will use either a swab or a tape lift to obtain their sample. These tests can tell if the growth is from actual water damage and intrusion or if it is excessively humid in the home. Dark and discolored growth is not always microbial and would mean it is not from a water damage situation. When you see visual growth it is always important to get a sample of it as well as an air quality sample to ensure spores have not been released into the air.

Indoor air quality testing

                This is done by taking numerous samples from within the inside of the home as well as a base line sample of the air quality on the outside of the home. These samples will be able to tell if you have hidden moisture leaks.

Indoor Air Quality with Comprehensive moisture evaluation.

                This testing is done to provide a full scope picture of what is really going on in the home. It is able to locate sources of moisture that overtime could damage the property or become a health concern. Mold and moisture damage can drastically affect the value of a home over time. So it is important to stay on top of things and help prevent any major damage. Identifying the damage early can save you in the long run.

Remember when you have any doubts or questions about mold in your home talk to a professional get your results and get it right the first time.

Is your home or office making you sick?

8/10/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Is your home or office making you sick? Air quality in your business or home can really affect how effective you and your employees function. Having good air quality can reduce sick days.

All this summer heat and humidity can take its toll on a lot of us. Many use AC inside their home to provide relief. Shutting up the house to hold it all in. That can result in very old stagnant air circulating. It can also provide ripe conditions for the things to grow in your duct work, or inside insulation that may have moisture from the condensation differences between the inside and outside temperature and humidity levels. 

Getting your home tested for mold can be a very wise investment to catch potential problems sooner rather than later.

Mold Testing

When to have an indoor air quality test done, and how the test is done. The word mold is not as bad as everyone thinks it is. The only time it becomes a problem is when there is too much of it. Too much mold can cause health problems or damage to your property. Not every home needs testing and not all testing is the same.

What sort of things should you be on the look for to decide if you need any mold testing.

  • Any general concerns about the house where something just does not seem right and you cannot put your finger on it.
  • When a home has been empty with no occupants for an extended period of time
  • Past water damage that was not cleaned up by a professional or you suspect was not done properly
  • No home inspections have been done in a while you see or suspect there is mold somewhere
  • A musty smell that is notice upon entering the home
  • Anyone in the home that has repertory problems
  • Mold Remediation was done and you want to ensure it was effective.
  • Visually seeing anything that looks like mold
  • If mold removal or clean up was done
  • When a 3rd party is effecting repairs and you need to make sure they are done correctly

There are 3 main options for testing

Surface Testing

                This is done to look for evidence of actual current or past mold growth. The tester will use either a swab or a tape lift to obtain their sample. These tests can tell if the growth is from actual water damage and intrusion or if it is excessively humid in the home. Dark and discolored growth is not always microbial and would mean it is not from a water damage situation. When you see visual growth it is always important to get a sample of it as well as an air quality sample to ensure spores have not been released into the air.

Indoor air quality testing

                This is done by taking numerous samples from within the inside of the home as well as a base line sample of the air quality on the outside of the home. These samples will be able to tell if you have hidden moisture leaks.

Indoor Air Quality with Comprehensive moisture evaluation.

                This testing is done to provide a full scope picture of what is really going on in the home. It is able to locate sources of moisture that overtime could damage the property or become a health concern. Mold and moisture damage can drastically affect the value of a home over time. So it is important to stay on top of things and help prevent any major damage. Identifying the damage early can save you in the long run.

Remember when you have any doubts or questions about mold in your home talk to a professional get your results and get it right the first time.

So you sent the Remediation company home early

7/30/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation So you sent the Remediation company home early Mold can grow .. especially if things are not fully dried before they are put back together.. Know what you risks are before you send us packing

A home owner or business owner wants to get back to normal as soon as possible. Working to make that happen is our goal. That being said water damage or fire damage is never a pretty thing. The right expectations need to be understood. Beyond that what needs to be understood is the reason for the time frame and process.

Let me explain. All too often especially with water damage issues we are asked to cease and desist. Pack up our stuff and leave before the work is done. There are even times that we recommend opening a wall, or pulling up the floor. Home owners and business owners will refuse to let us to do this sort of work. Why would they do that you ask. There are a number of reasons but the main one is that they do not want the inconvenience of more intrusion into their home. This is always a bad idea.

Restoration companies have extensive training and certifications that most do not. They also have years of experience working with insurance companies and property adjusters. This leads to a great understanding of the scope of work that is needed to properly mitigate your building. This ensures what they call secondary damage is not an option.

First let us get into what secondary damage actually is. Secondary damage is something that would not have happened even if the first occurred. Let me explain. If you do have a pipe break, you call and get the plumber out and stop the water. Moisture damage is what happens when you do not mitigate the water that intruded into your home fast enough.

Some key examples of what is considered secondary damage is when your wood floors start to buckle. This is not from the water intrusion it is from the wood sitting in the water that is underneath . The wood warps. This warping forces the finish to crack and the floors are not salvage able.

Ok so you don’t have wood floors. Vinyl is not much better, look at that edging popping up. That is damage from the water getting under the floor and damaging the glue.

Cracks in sheet rock and sagging ceiling are a result of moisture continuing to collect if they did not have an outlet to release the water.

Mold colonization. This is probably the most problematic. The challenge here is many times it will be somewhere you cannot see until it is a real problem. Similar to an iceberg you only see a fraction what is there. Lurking behind a wall under a floor or even where you see nothing at all such as in a duct system.

Let us get back to the reason for this post. We have clients that ask us to leave early and no explanation in the world is going to change their minds. Business owners are looking at the short term issue they have to be closed. Closing means so money is coming in and many do not have the proper insurance to cover loss of business. Additionally they tend to have very high deductibles or inadequate coverage. Coupled with lack of income there are a lot of bad decision made. They only want the visible water dried out. They will not allow demolition to occur for it will delay the process of reopening. Another problem is that they do not want to pay for anything more than absolutely necessary.

Home owners often as us to leave early but not always for the same reasons as a business owner. The equipment that is used in the drying process is industrial. It is not like the fan you put on your night stand to lull you to sleep. These are high powered fans used to circulate the air and create a tornado like event that forces strong air movement. They are positioned in such a fashion that they are pointed at wet objects , such as a wall. This positioning is tied directly to where the dehumidifiers are located as well. This will force the air to push the moisture out of the wet materials into the air and the dehumidifier will capture the wet air and release it as drier air. This requires the area to be warm. We ask people to turn up their heat and the equipment itself gives off quite a bit. All too often the home owner will say the fans are too loud. They are too big and in the way. I have a party planned for this weekend. It is just too hot inside I cannot stand it anymore.

All of these decisions are bad ideas. We have 3 different kinds of waivers that are required. One that states you know we do not advise removal of equipment. One that advises you are declining the scope of work we are recommending. There is also a limitation on standard compliance form when we are not allowed to perform the necessary scope of the work. We have to make sure when the mold appears down the road we are not held liable and the parties in question were explained the scope of possibilities for this refusal.

We try to work with the residents of the property to the best of our ability. At the end of the day they are the ones affected and we will honor their wishes. You must know the potential ramifications for your actions and know that down the road be it 1 week, month, one year or even several years later. Mold can be a very serious problem. Kicking off a professional can be expensive. Now we agree not everyone may be doing the work up to par and that is your right to change whom it is that is doing the work. Have a plan in place to get it completed in a timely fashion. Do not kick them off totally without a solid replacement plan.

The cost associated with Mold Remediation far exceeds what a few days of inconvenience could ever be. So before you kick a remediation company off the job, think about what is going on and have a plan.

Mushrooms in my home

7/30/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Mushrooms in my home Mushrooms in your fridge? Delish. Mushrooms growing on your fridge or on your home anywhere?? BAD... Call us today

Mushrooms..

Many people like mushrooms and the variety and textures available are endless. That being said, from time to time we get calls that people have mushrooms are growing in their home. On a ceiling, out of a wall or floor. What is going on in the home that this is happening? We will dive into that a bit more and explain what conditions are needed for this to happen. One thing to know is that you do have an underlying problem and it is not going to be just as simple as getting rid of the mushrooms.

What is a mushroom? It is a variety of plant that grows in very specific conditions.  Since it does not use chlorophyll to grow it actually does much better in darker environments. Even indirect light from a florescent lamp can do the trick. One key thing that they do need is moisture, a high humidity environment is always present. While too much water will kill them moist environments are ripe for growth.  They tend to grow on decomposing materials such as trees, leaves, mulch, soil, compost wood. An ideal temperature for mushrooms is 70 degrees F but a wild mushroom with the right environment can grow in a range from 40 to 90 degrees F.

With that out of the way let us explore why that matters to you and your home. Do you have a basement, attic or crawl space? Do you have a bathroom that is used at all? Is there a toilet in your home that has water in it? You are halfway there to having the right environment for growth.  Do you live in an area with humidity levels that are tracked by the local weatherman? Yikes you are getting closer. Does the interior of your home feel humid and sticky? Have you ever had a water leak that you cleaned up on your own? How is the pitch and grade of the water away from your home? Do you live in a flood zone or have had more rain than normal? Was there a flood on your street due to a pipe break or excessive rain? If you answered yes to any of these questions you could have the right environment for mushrooms in your home.

Let me first explain that if you see a mushroom in your home you have mold in the house somewhere. You also have water that is getting onto surfaces that you do not want it on. Should you see mushrooms you must immediately work on finding the water source. A slow drip pipe leak, a toilet whose seal has broken even just a little bit could be the reason. There are a number of reasons for the water intrusion. Just removing the mushroom will not alleviate the problem. Once you find the source of the water and stop it, you must assess the true damage. Follow the path from the water source to the mushroom.

 Let us provide you with a real life example.

                Toilet leak: Owner knew about the toilet leak: It dripped from the 2nd floor bathroom down into their dining room and into the basement.  The owner initially elected to clean it up on their own.  Wiping everything down and cleaning the walls and ceiling they thought were affected. The unfinished basement was nominal in their eyes and they threw some cat litter on the floor to absorb the water. Thinking all was fine they went about their lives. Days later the dining room ceiling had mushrooms growing from it. What the owners did not do was clean between the walls nor did they dry out the spaces between them. The contaminated water that was trapped between the walls provided a prime environment for the spores of the mushrooms to grow and spread out from the mold that had started to run along the wood beams. There was a great deal of work that needed to be done to open up the walls and decontaminate everything that the water had touched and spread to. Had a professional been called initially they could have opened smaller sections and reduced the damage. There is more to the story but the moral is just because you cannot see it does not mean it is not there.

There are steps you can take to reduce moisture in your home.

Keep bathrooms as dry as possible when done using it.

 Wipe the inside of the shower down.

Keep all towels off the floor

Use mats at all major entrances and especially in shower and bathroom areas

Have a professional check all the pipes for leaks

Inspect the toilet for a proper seal.

Call a professional if you have a water intrusion in your home.

The most important part of seeing a mushroom in your home is knowing that you have something bigger going on. You have to accept this and know that it is not as easy as getting rid of the visible problem. Even if you call a professional it is important to trust what they are saying to you and not be solely driven by money there can be major consequences should you ignore or not properly treat a mold problem. Remember there are all sorts of tips and tricks online not all of them are accurate.

Bleach may work on the mushrooms in your home but they do not work on the mold. Where there is mushroom there is mold. Be sure you do your research and don’t try to tackle this problem on your own.

Residents: Follow These Mold Safety Tips If You Suspect Mold

9/27/2017 (Permalink)

If you see visible mold, do not disturb it. You can inadvertently spread the mold infestation throughout your home. When mold is disturbed, the mold can release microscopic mold spores which become airborne and can circulate inside your home.

What to Do:

  • Stay out of affected areas.
  • Turn off the HVAC system and fans.
  • Contact SERVPRO of Arlington/Somerville for mold remediation services.

What Not to Do:

  • Don’t touch or disturb the mold.
  • Don’t blow air across any surfaces with visible or suspected mold growth.
  • Don’t attempt to dry the area yourself.
  • Don’t spray bleach or other disinfectants on the mold.

About Our Mold Remediation Services

SERVPRO of Arlington/Somerville specializes in mold cleanup and restoration, in fact, it’s a cornerstone of our business.  Our crews are highly trained restoration professionals that use specialized equipment and techniques to properly remediate your mold problem quickly and safely.

If You See Signs of Mold, Call Us Today – (617) 629-5333

Does Your Arlington/Somerville Home Have A Mold Problem?

10/6/2016 (Permalink)

Microscopic mold spores naturally occur almost everywhere, both outdoors and indoors. This makes it impossible to remove all mold from a home or business. Therefore, mold remediation reduces the mold spore count back to its natural or baseline level. Some restoration businesses advertise “mold removal” and even guarantee to remove all mold, which is a fallacy. Consider the following mold facts:

  • Mold is present almost everywhere, indoors and outdoors.
  • Mold spores are microscopic and float along in the air and may enter your home through windows, doors, or AC/heating systems or even hitch a ride indoors on your clothing or a pet.
  • Mold spores thrive on moisture. Mold spores can quickly grow into colonies when exposed to water. These colonies may produce allergens and irritants.
  • Before mold remediation can begin, any sources of water or moisture must be addressed. Otherwise, the mold may return.
  • Mold often produces a strong, musty odor and can lead you to possible mold problem areas.
  • Even higher-than-normal indoor humidity can support mold growth. Keep indoor humidity below 45 percent.

 

If your home or business has a mold problem, we can inspect and assess your property and use our specialized training, equipment, and expertise to remediate your mold infestation.

If You See Signs of Mold, Call Us Today – (617) 629-5333