Mold Remediation – Part 1

May 18, 2008 at 9:24 am 1 comment

The subject of mold in buildings has been a major concern for some time now and I am not sure that it deserves all of the press that it has gotten. Now, granted that a serious mold contamination of a building is a serious problem that must be addressed, it is not the light your hair on fire emergency that is often portrayed in news reports and the like.

Now let’s discuss some basic facts about mold. First mold is everywhere and there are thousands of types and varieties. At this point in time there are only a relative few that cause problems for people. So let’s get some basic points straight.

Stachyobotrus Chaterus

Molds are forms of fungi found all year round both indoors and outdoors.

Outdoors, mold live in the soil, on plants and on dead or decaying matter.

Mold is often commonly called Mildew

There are thousands of species and they can be of any color.

Most fungi, including molds produce microscopic cells called spores instead of seeds.

We are all exposed to these spores daily in the air we breathe.

The problem with a severe contamination like these pictured is that over time most people will develop an allergic reaction to the spores that molds use to propagate. This is an immediate problem if you already have an allergy, but this sensitivity does take some time to develop in those not already sensitive.

So how do determine if you have a problem if it isn’t as visible as those above? First I would recommend doing a detailed inspection of the site, concentrating on any areas where there is evidence of water intrusion or old water damage. The main things that are required for mold to cause a problem is, cellulose (the paper in drywall and the lumber in your walls), darkness and moisture. If any of these three items are missing then the mold won’t be able to replicate and cause problems. This means that in your preventive maintenance plan responding to water intrusion and attending to the integrity of the building envelope( windows, doors, walls and roof) should be of the highest importance.

If the users of the site are experiencing problems are your inspection has found no visible causes then your next step is an expensive one, testing. In my next post on this topic I will cover the type of testing and some suggestions on finding a reliable and professional testing company.

As always I appreciate your interest in my blog. Please direct any questions of comments to

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Entry filed under: Disaster Preparedness, Maintenance. Tags: , , , .

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