Mold Removal Tips For Your Northern Virginia Home
Getting rid of mold presents a challenge for most homeowners, and in the end, most wind up calling a professional mold remediation company to complete the task. Before it gets to the point of needing professional help, you can reduce the amount of mold in your home by keeping track of where you see the mold growth - in addition to some good old-fashioned thorough cleaning.
You should know, mold may cause cosmetic damage and staining to the surface, and even removing it may not remove the stain caused by the mold growth and saturation. Most home improvement stores sell specialty paints and primers to can help reduce the appearance of stains on painted surfaces. But even these products will only cover the problem, not get rid of the mold problem as a mold remediation company can.
Before you set to work with a bucket of hot water and bleach, it’s important to figure out where the mold is coming from. In other words, determine the cause of the problem before you try to solve it. Mold cannot grow without moisture, so the best place to start looking for the source of your mold problem is around the areas of your home where water is present.
As to why it matters, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has this to say on the subject:
“Molds have the potential to cause health problems. Molds produce allergens (substances that can cause allergic reactions), irritants, and in some cases, potentially toxic substances (mycotoxins). Inhaling or touching mold or mold spores may cause allergic reactions in sensitive individuals. Allergic responses include hay fever-type symptoms, such as sneezing, runny nose, red eyes, and skin rash (dermatitis). Allergic reactions to mold are common. They can be immediate or delayed. Molds can also cause asthma attacks in people with asthma who are allergic to mold. In addition, mold exposure can irritate the eyes, skin, nose, throat, and lungs of both mold-allergic and non-allergic people. Symptoms other than the allergic and irritant types are not commonly reported as a result of inhaling mold. Research on mold and health effects is ongoing.”
According to the EPA, if the moldy area is smaller than 10 square feet (about a 3 ft. by 3 ft. patch), you can clean it yourself following EPA guidelines.
Cleaning will help get rid of mold that is currently present, but it will not solve the problem of where the mold started in the first place. In some cases, however, it makes sense to get the professionals involved right from this start. This is especially true if any of the following conditions apply:
- You’re dealing with excessive amounts of water or mold
- You suspect that your HVAC system was affected
- If any amount of sewage is involved
- Or if you have an especially large mold infestation you can smell
Those are clear signs you need professional assistance. They have the professional-grade tools, in addition to the know-how and expertise. Generally speaking, if you see mold in your closets, on the ceilings or walls, or even on your baseboards, you have a mold problem that will go beyond the basics of cleaning.
For example, check for leaking or broken pipes, cracks in the foundation of your home, or areas with poor ventilation like closets and cabinets. Even if you clean the mold, or if you enlist the assistance of a professional mold removal company, if the problem is not corrected, the mold will only return.
Before hiring a remediation company, there are a number of specific questions you should ask. These include:
- Is the company you’re considering working with willing to give you a written remediation plan for your home in Northern, VA?
- Will they give you a written contract/change order?
- Does the mold company carry insurance?
- Does the mold company quarantine the infected area to prevent cross-contamination?
- Does the mold company use negative air machines and air scrubbers to clean the air?
- Will they provide you with references and their contact numbers?
- Do they provide a post-remediation report?
- What kind of warranty or guarantee do they offer on their work?
Any company that’s unwilling or unable to answer those types of questions doesn’t deserve your business and should be considered highly suspect. As the #1 mold remediation company in the region, we’ll be happy to answer all of those questions and any others you might have. If you even suspect you have a mold issue, don’t hesitate to call us right away. You’ll be very glad you did.