Everything you need to know about black mold removal
Black mold removal can be done by yourself or professionally depending on the circumstances. In order to protect yourself and your family from health problems, it is critical that you know when to deal with the issue yourself with removal products or whether you should seek the professional help of a removal company. We will help you
• See the health risks black mold is associated with
• Determine if you have a problem with black mold growth
• Decide whether you will seek the professional help of a mold removal company or whether you should do it yourself.
What is Black Mold?
Black mold is a type of fungus that typically grows indoors whenever there is water damage. It has many different types and variations, but the most common is called stachybotrys chartarum or sometimes stachybotrys atra. It is also sometimes referred to as ‘toxic black mold’ because of the adverse health effects that exposure to the fungi causes. The mold typically accompanies a musty smell and is found in parts of the home specifically affected by water damage. It usually has a dark green, black color and can be located on any surface.
What are the Health Risks and Symptoms of Black Mold Exposure?
Some of the black mold symptoms to look for to see if your black mold problem has already had an influence on your health are headaches and fever. Occasionally the eyes can become irritated (similar to the reaction that those with allergies experience during the spring). Occasionally, severe coughing, nausea and internal bleeding in the lungs are present if exposure has been extreme. At times, excessive exposure can lead to psychological health hazards like memory loss or depression.
What are the Causes of Black Mold?
Black mold forms when there is unresolved water damage due to something like leaky pipes or when the relative humidity of a certain place in the household increases, such as shower curtains. Some homeowners attempt to avoid excessive moisture by installing a humidity sensor to detect dangerous levels that might trigger the formation of black mold. Some high-risk areas are vents, bathrooms, basements and attics. If there has been any recent flooding then it would be wise to check those areas.
Black Mold Removal – DIY or Professional?
It is important to recognize that the actual removal of black mold isn’t the difficult part of the job. You see, removal is fairly straightforward and can be done once you are equipped with proper mold removal products. You will need
• a heavy-duty sponge
• A cleaning agent – typically stores will have a retail brand of some sort that you can purchase, we suggest that you look at our black mold removal products page for more information.
• Eye protection
• A Respiratory mask
Once you are properly prepared for the task (and we do suggest that you use all of the equipment stated above), follow the instructions in applying the cleaning agent to the mold and then, after drying, remove the mold. It is important that when you remove the mold that you attempt to contain it in plastic bags so that it will not be spread through the rest of the home. Sealing off the mold from the rest of the home is very important. Failure to do so can actually make your black mold problems even worse.
Now the hard part is making sure that mold doesn’t come back. First you need to identify why the mold’s location has become a ‘hot-spot’. You need to take care of the moisture problem. Locate what is causing the moisture issue. Do you have leaky pipes? Do you have poor ventilation? Is there an issue with your outdoor landscaping that is causing pooling? Without dealing with the source of the problem, you will find that the black mold issue will be a recurring problem.
Professional Black Mold Removal or Do-It-Yourself?
You need to understand that in order to appropriately remove black mold by yourself, it still is going to cost you money in order to get the right products and eliminate the problem for good. If the problem is serious or you have no previous experience with problems like this, it would probably make sense for you to hire professionally.
Mold Removal Products and The Way To Use Them
With regards to mold and mildew, it is more often than not a continuing fight to ensure that they are eliminated from your home. Their spores usually stay dormant for a long period time and reappear at the most inconvenient occasions. And since mold removal products would be the only defense that will help you eliminate the mold and mildew which invades your house, it is essential that the products are free from dangerous Read more of this article on black mold removall
“Black Mold” is commonly used to describe a viscous substance, greenish black in color can result in serious health risk. There are many types of mold that can be black or gray in color or black pigment or created in the area grows. Some of the most common names are Cladosporium mold, Pithomyces, Stemphydium, Ulocladium, Aureobasidium, Alternaria, and Stachybotrys Memmoniella. Stachybotrys and are the only types Memnoniella black mold known to produce mycotoxins with a toxic substance that can cause serious health problems.
How To Kill Black Mold
How are you supposed to counter mold on the walls of your home?
During the winter, cold walls, especially if the house has an exterior wall facing north, will be a haven for black mold to spread all over.
One of the ways to combat this situation is to change the external temperature difference between the water inside the wall and the exterior temperature. A decreased difference will help fight the formation of mold on the exterior of your home.
However, there are more economical and effective methods for prevention and elimination of mold.
Some tips on how to kill black mold growth are:
Find and purchase a device that absorbs moisture and excess humidity in the air. A electric dehumidifier for your home can be one of the best preventative steps for protecting your home.
Mold will often camouflage itself well in areas that are painted grey in color. One of the first areas you need to check are poorly lit or gray-painted areas to see if somehow the formation of black mold has been able to go unnoticed.
Often times, the mold problem will come from vapor condensation that is able to seep out of the bathroom after someone has taken a shower. In order to prevent the moisture from coming out, keep your bathroom door closed and turn on the fan after every shower, especially if you already live in an area with high humidity.
You should also make sure that you open windows and try to ventilate every single room, every day. Even if it causes the temperature to drop a little bit every day for half an hour, the preventative measures are well worth the slight discomfort of a colder home for just a little period of time.
Unfortunately, insulation in homes is not very well done, and moisture is able to seep between the walls of your newly constructed home and become a breeding ground for black mold. This is particularly dangerous because the poisonous spores can go undetected and get into air ducts and fill the entire home.
You can also get a humidity gauge. Typically humidity between 30-40% is comfortable for everyone but doesn’t create an environment for black mold symptoms to grow.
These solutions are suitable for all budgets. They are effective and very economical. It may be nice to just have a heater that can increase the temperature of the room where the black mold removal is necessary, but the cost of such a strategy is very pricey.
If you already have mold in your home, you should spray the black mold with a cleaning solution (so that the yellow part of the mold leaves.) Once the yellow has left after a few minutes, remove the remaining mold with a heavy-duty brush. Finally, rinse the area thoroughly with water and a brush pot.
Hopefully, with these preventative and remediation techniques you will be able to remove the black mold from the walls of your home.
Black Mold Poisoning
Are you looking for information to eliminate the health risks of mold growth? Has black mold completely taken over your home? Have you formed any adverse reactions to your health that appear to be related to black mold symptoms? Perhaps you feel like you are suffering from other related diseases such as asthma and hay fever. If you knew exactly what the warning signs were that your body is in contact with contaminated air pollution, then you would be able to avoid black mold, and you could probably correct the issue with some form of black mold removal.
What is black mold?
Black mold is a powdery mildew (a type of filamentous fungi) that thrives in high humidity and can be described as an increase in the form of certain types of mushrooms lint fibers in wet organic material. Mold on clothing fabric is increasingly likely if the clothes have not been washed or worn in a while. Some dangerous fungi that we deal with include Aspergillus, Trichoderma (Trichoderma), Alternaria, Penicillium and Cladosporium. A particularly poisonous fungi is Sutakibotorisu, where fungal infections can cause allergic reactions. These reactions can have serious illnesses or health implications. Many people upon touching spores experience an allergic reaction to mold. Especially when black mold spores are inhaled, serious symptoms may occur.
What symptoms may be a sign of toxic mold?
You should consider a variety of health problems as being indicative of a potential black mold symptoms.
- Red, watery eyes
- Light, constant headaches
- Skin sensitivity
- Nose and throat irritation,
- Symptoms of hay fever such as rhinosinusitis
- Asthma symptoms such as difficulty breathing, coughing, wheezing and asthma attacks
- The symptoms of influenza such as infection and inflammation of the lungs
- Memory problems
- Mood swings
All of these symptoms are very common among people. We can assume that it is possible that a large majority of the population is people suffering from mold related issues. Why? Because today, more than 50% of all modern buildings are full of mold and spores. This is harmful to people like you and I who are potentially exposed every single day. This is a very common problem in warehouses and other large buildings.
So what can you do? Ask the owner or manager of your local museum or restaurant if they are are experiencing the spread of mold problems in old furniture. Most owners don’t think about this so it will probably be news to them. Its important that they are informed though because black mold is causing damage and destruction to art and furniture.
One problem is that some governmental or residential regulations may actually help spur mold growth. Some energy conservation acts, laws and regulations ask that windows and doors be shut off to conserve energy, unwittingly killing airflow, increasing humidity and creating an environment that is more suceptible to toxic black mold.
How To Identify Black Mold Health Effects
There’s a lot of talk these days about black mold health effects and it’s easy to see why people are jumping to all sorts of conclusions and blaming every sniffle and sneeze on black mold. While it’s true that black mold can have some pretty serious health effects, a simple sneeze once or twice a week doesn’t necessarily mean your house is being overtaken by The Blob. Here are some of the black mold health effects you can watch for:
Black Mold Health Effects – Allergies
Most people are allergic to mold. But spotting a small patch doesn’t mean your health is immediately at risk. Generally, the symptoms include coughing, scratching, sneezing, watery eyes, runny nose and a sore throat. If you’ve found a patch of mold you should get rid of it. If there’s no mold in sight then don’t panic. You’re probably just reacting to pollen or dust.
Infections – Infections caused by exposure to black mold are more common in people with weakened immune systems – young children and babies, seniors, and people who are taking drugs for chemotherapy. When taking these drugs you already have a weaker immune system and your body can’t properly fight off infection. Again, if you see black mold in your home you should get rid of it and fix the problem. If you don’t see it, don’t panic. If your immune system is weakened you could be reacting to dust, pollen, or viruses. It’s still important to seek medical treatment, but you don’t necessarily have to destroy your home in search of the hidden black mold.
More serious – If members of your family are suddenly having trouble concentrating or they’re experiencing severe headaches, dizziness and nausea, then it’s reasonable to assume you have a massive problem with black mold somewhere in your home. And it’s probably gone undetected for quite some time. As you can see, these symptoms can be very severe.
Identifying black mold health effects is almost as tricky as finding the black mold that’s hiding in your home. And with all the over-blown negative publicity it’s easy to jump to conclusions every time some in your household has the sniffles.
The truth is, you may have black mold growing somewhere in your home and never be able to find it. While it typically prefers cool, damp places in your house, it also likes to grow inside your walls. Which would mean then, if you really want to check out your whole house you’re going to have to tear down a lot of walls!
So what should you do? Well, first, give your house a thorough investigation – from top to bottom. Either wash away or cut away every piece of mold you see. And next, don’t panic. It could be that your family members have just contracted a cold or flue or maybe there’s a bug going around. However, if symptoms persist, or worsen, then consult your physician first to determine the cause.
How To Reduce Black Mold Health Risks
It’s not always easy to detect black mold and your family’s health could be at serious risk before you know it. If it seems that everyone in your household seems to be sick lately, it may be that you have a serious case of black mold somewhere in your home. Here are some steps you can take to reduce black mold health risks and protect your family.
Black mold grows best in damp, moist conditions and a basement provides a perfect breeding environment for mold spores. Especially if you have standing water or leaky windows, or cracks in the foundation. Look along the base of your basement walls, look around windows and look into dark corners and behind appliances.
You may also find black mold growing along baseboards inside your home, especially along the exterior walls where the ground outside comes into contact with the home’s foundation.
And mold can also show up in closets and under stairwells. And of course, bathrooms and laundry rooms are also prime breeding areas because of the humidity in these rooms. And don’t forget to check the attic.
It’s possible to remove small patches of mold yourself by scraping it off the floor or wall and then liberally flushing the area with bleach. However, you should never scrape of mold that is dry. What appears to be dust will go drifting off into the air but it’s really mold spores you’ve released. And not they’re going to take up residence somewhere else in your home and start breeding again.
For larger patches you may have to cut out the offending spot and, again, if you’re handy with a saw, you can do this yourself. If not, there are services which specialize in mold removal and cleanup.
Black Mold Health Risks – Beyond Mold Removal
However, removing the mold doesn’t always solve the problem. You’ll still experience black mold health risks until you find the cause of the problem and fix it. For example, if you find mold growing under the kitchen sink, it’s not enough to just clean it up. Mold prefers a damp, dark environment – so why is it damp under the sink? Why has a big patch of black mold decided to latch on to the baseboard in your child’s bedroom? Is there some moisture there? And if so, where is it coming from?
If you find a patch of mold and don’t track it to it’s cause it’s just going to return – again, and again, and your family’s health will constantly be at risk. And the risks aren’t minor by any means. Upper respiratory problems, asthma, sinusitis, pneumonia and skin infections – these can all sound quite harmless but any of these conditions, left untreated, can lead to severe medical problems, or even death.
What is Black Mold?
Black Mold is referred to scientifically as stachybotrys chartarum and Stachybotrys atra. In order for black mold to grow, it must have a very specific set of environmental factors working in its favor.
It requires an environment with (1) constant moisture, (2) high cellulose and (30 low levels of nitrogen. In large amounts, the mold is visible and can also typically be smelled.
Dangers of Black Mold
It is toxic and very dangerous when inhaled or ingested and can cause reactions similar to those of hay fever allergies to as severe as neurological and respiratory damage, and even sometimes death. These black mold symptoms can be painful and increase in intensity over time. Black mold health risks are more extreme for those with allergies as well as younger children are more susceptible to the sever reactions of black mold.
Types of Black Mold
There are many different types of molds, and Stachybotrys is one of the less common types. However, to call it unlikely or rare wouldn’t be fitting, it is present in more home than we would expect. For this reason, there are many commercial products and services offering black mold removal for paying customers.
Environment Needed for Black Mold Growth
Because moisture is critical to the growth of black mold, most companies offer their black mold removal services coupled with an analysis of what in the home is causing the environment to be conducive to the ‘swamp-like’ area where the mold is growing.
Black Mold Symptoms – What are the Signs of Black Mold
One of the reasons there are so many safety concerns related to black mold is that some of the sicknesses and black mold symptoms are very damaging and can severely damage your health and even life if gone untreated. If you are wondering if you or one of your loved ones have possible exposed yourselves to black mold, read through the following guide on some of the more telling black mold symptoms to determine whether you need medical help right away.
Mild Black Mold Symptoms – Minimum Exposure
Some superficial reactions involve responses similar to that of someone experiencing an allergic reaction: Itchy eyes, sneezing and skin irritation. While these signs can mean a multitude of different things, if you have recently been exposed to mold, then it would be wise to go to your doctor.
Serious Black Mold Symptoms
When symptoms become more serious, it can indicate that exposure and interaction with the black mold has been either long-lasting or intense. The nervous system is affected, with symptoms such headaches, short-term memory loss, or other problems can arise. The body, in an attempt to cleanse itself, may attempt to purge the black mold from the body, manifesting itself through diarrhea, vomiting, or coughing up blood.
Black Mold Symptoms – Basic Symptoms Worsen
Superficial reactions worsen at this stage as well, with skin irritation becoming amplified and possibly evolving into severe rash or open sores. The respiratory system is affected and bronchitis, asthma attacks, breathing disorders and sinus infects all are increasingly more likely.
Conclusion – The Fatal Dangers of Black Mold
Hopefully you can get this issue taken care of, because the symptoms will continue to progress until severe brain damage, cancer, blindness and eventually death take the victim’s life.
Also important to note is that there are many different types of mold and that everyone’s body reacts differently to different exposures. The one common thread between everything is that when the mold spores are inhaled or ingested, it is the equivalent of being poisoned by degrees. It is a bit unnerving, but the mold spores will continue to grow within the body, accelerating any potential damage to the body.
If you or a loved one has experienced any of these symptoms associated with black mold and have believe you have been exposed, you need to (1) visit a doctor as soon as possible and (2) make sure that you invest in some sort of black mold removal in order to eliminate the source of the problem.
How Do I Get Rid of Mold? The Mold Removal Process
Step 1 – Should You Be Doing Mold Removal In the First Place?
If you are positive you have mold problems – check out our articles about black mold symptoms and mold testing for more information – then the next question that you really need to ask yourself is whether you should be the one attempting to cleanup duty in the first place. You might want to call in mold specialists who offer remediation services for taking care of the toxic problem. After all, they have experience with mold removal.
How can you know whether you should call in a highly skilled professional? Does you mold problem fit any of these characteristics?
Serious Mold Removal Problem Signs
• Was the mold problem caused by flooding or sewage overflow? (we know – gross) If this is the case, it can be unhealthy to be in charge of clean up and more severe, long-term health issues may arise if not dealt with properly the first time around.
• Does it appear that the mold has grown inside or next to a heating vent, air conditioning or any other air ducts within the home? Airborne mold spores can spread to other parts of the home unless these areas are specifically tested.
• How much area does the mold cover? Is it more than a 3-foot by 3-foot area? If so, the problem might be so severe that it is necessary to call in professional services for mold removal.
Step 2 – Get the Appropriate Mold Removal Products
For a more detailed review of which products you should use, please view our resource page – Mold Removal Products. However, the quick summary of what you will need is
• A facemask to protect your lungs from breathing in anything toxic
• A cleansing agent like bleach or a retail product to kill the mold
• A heavy-duty sponge.
• Plastic bags to safely carry the removed mold out of the home and to the landfill.
Step 3 – Take Care of the Moisture Problem
It makes absolutely no sense to try to remove the mold when the source of the problem is still going strong. Its important to remember that mold is a symptom of a bigger problem. If there are leaky pipes, high humidity or any other water related issues, those need to be resolved before attempting to remove anything. If you are familiar with plumbing, then you might be able to do this yourself. If not, then you really might need to consider hiring a mold remediation company. If your problem seems to be that you just aren’t getting great ventilation, consider buying a dehumidifier to take care of the problem. We suggest looking at our dehumidifier reviews page for more information about the different brands or if you really trust us, you can just go for our top suggestion located on our best dehumidifier page.
Step 4 – Remove the Mold
Using your heavy-duty sponge or cloth, completely scrub off all of the mold from the affected areas. You can’t leave any remainder of the mold or it will grow back. Occasionally, there will be mold on the carpet or in the ceiling that is impossible to remove. If that is the case, you will need to throw away your carpet or ceiling and completely replace everything. DO NOT PAINT OVER THE MOLD if you are unable to get rid of it. Not only will it look terrible and start to peel after only a few days, but the mold could potentially grow undetected if you do.
When you remove all of the mold, place it in plastic bags and seal it off completely so that the mold spores cannot become airborne and spread through the rest of the house.