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Mold: A Little Bit is Too Much

All it takes is a little bit of mold to cause problems. If you ignore it, it can spread and grow to a size that may become too difficult for an average household to handle if you don’t take action and repair the water source and dry out completely. It can discolor the surfaces as it grows on the surface and start releasing spores that can be toxic, irritating, and cause allergic reactions. The health concerns of living with such toxins are not worth ignoring, even if it is just a little bit.


Where Does Mold Grow?


Molds are outdoor fungi that help break down dead plants and other organic matter. They are normally found outside in warm, damp, and shady places. They get inside by releasing their spores into the air which can go through openings in your home and settle in. Places like the bathroom, crawlspaces, and your HVAC unit are an excellent example of damp places that mold is likely to start growing. The key to prevention is maintaining the consistent humidity level in your home at approximately 40%.  It is always a good idea to mitigate any damages by simply wiping up any wet areas, shutting off a leaking valve or calling in a professional to repair a leak and or dry out a leak before mold starts to grow. Visible mold can start to appear within 48 hours after a leak.


What Health Problems Can Molds Cause?


Both mold and the spores it releases can cause health problems. There are also mold byproducts such as mycotoxins that can cause a myriad of symptoms. These spores can travel through the air, and they can enter your sinus cavities and possibly your lungs causing coughing, sneezing, red eyes, asthma symptoms for those with asthma, headaches, and so on. Some molds can be extremely dangerous such as legionella, which is the cause of Legionnaires Disease! Normally molds are not too dangerous, but they do cause many allergic and irritant effects that can be unbearable to live with. If you do notice any symptoms like respiratory issues or any allergy issues, in conjunction with a recent leak or past water episode then you may have a mold concern.


Don’t Clean With Bleach!


     Many people tell me they use bleach to clean mold and any dirtiness they find in their home.  When you come across a visible mold concern that covers different surfaces of your home such as walls, Trims, door, woodwork, etc. bleach is the wrong way to go. Bleach (chlorine) is poisonous to inhale, and when a large amount is used to clean a surface, you are constantly inhaling these poisonous fumes. It can even be worse than the mold itself! Cleaning with detergent and water is the best way to handle these situations. In the event that you do find a large mold concern, please call me as I am trained to handle such large areas. Any area over 10sqft should be cleaned by a state certified mold remeditator.  If it is a structure other than your home you would be working outside of your limits and should consult a professional. And just as a side note, the mold that you wiped off the surface may be nothing compared to what might be found in the wall cavity.


Mold in Tallahassee


     Tallahassee, and Florida, is an incredibly humid and hot place. This creates the perfect conditions for mold to grow and spread indoors. One house I visited had an entire wall covered with mold in one of the main living areas. The owners had figured it was not important enough to call me until it had spread all over. Another mold infestation I encountered was located underneath the house. I had to crawl through a 15” high by 13” wide access door just to treat the source, something I do with regularity. If you have a leak or suspect you have leak or a mold issue in the living area of your home, crawlspace, attic, or any rooms in your commercial building give me a call. I can come out and do a full mold inspection and mold testing. During your inspection I am also looking for the reason why you have mold, to clean up mold without correcting the source of the moisture is not the proper long term solution I am looking for. And remember it is illegal for a company or individual to perform both the mold inspection and the mold remediation on the same house.


James G. Pace, IV
Guardian Home Inspections & Repairs, Inc.
Tally Awards Winner 2012 Best Home Inspection
Tally Awards Top 3, 2013 Best Home Inspection
State Certified Building Contractor, CBC1257109
State Certified Mold Remediator, MRSR760
State Certified Mold Inspector, MRSA1968
State Certified Home Inspector, HI3259
State Certified Radon Mitigation Specialist, R2322
State Certified Radon Mitigation Business, RB2332
EPA-RRP Lead Safety Certification R-I-1018-10-0721
International Association Of Certified Home Inspectors Member #1265
Member National Organization Of Remediator And Mold Inspectors #12029
Member Indoor Environmental Air Quality Council
1716 Monticello Dr.
Tallahassee, Florida 32303
(850) 297-1998 Office
(850) 893-MOLD Office
(850) 508-3948 Cell

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