Black mold is “The Bad One” – it’s the one the news tries to scare you with, and for once they might have a point. However, not all black mold carries toxins and it’s actually quite rare for it to be that dangerous.
Only special circumstances like mechanical disturbance, would cause black mold to release its spores. This is why whenever GCD Restoration instructs a client, we advise to stay away and not disturb mold, even it’s not with a black color.
What IS black mold and is it Really That Dangerous?
When we service a property in mold and mildew removal and remediation, we do follow strict protocol. This is out of caution since mold can and will be dangerous when touched, inhaled or digested – no need to expose our team, or you for that matter, to excessive danger.
What makes “Black Mold” so dangerous?
There are countless types of mildew and fungal growths, in fact you are probably near some of their spores right now. However, 5 out 9 times those are quite harmless, though the other 4 times those can lead to some serious problems.
Black Mold or Stachybotrys chartarum is a type of fungal formation with mycotoxic properties which. These toxins are produce during the growing and spreading of spores, mostly in the form of small, dust-like, particles which get airborne with mechanical disturbance.
There are three main conditions which need to be met in order for mildew to start growing:
There must be moisture
There must be food – cellulose and sugars
No direct sun light
Though there are other conditions which need to be met, these are primary conditions, that when met, will see the formation of mildew cultures. It usually takes anywhere from 24 hours to 10 days for it start germinating and spreading.
It should be noted that Stachybotrys chartarum does not like living around other species of mildew. It’s relatively tame in terms of growth and it prefers solitude rather than bonding with other types.
This makes its identification quite easy, however, it’s pone to growing in hard to reach spaces and behind wall paper or under carpeting. The only way to find it is through the musty smell we’ve all come to dread.
How to Prevent Toxic Mold Growth in a Property?
We are regularly asked this question and the only true solution is to reduce the moisture levels of a property. There’s always some of in the air and there’s hardly anything that can be done, aside from living in a laboratory and even then it’s not a guarantee.
A general rule of thumb is to monitor moisture levels around windows, in your laundry room, around the sink or inside the walls where water-bearing pipes are. Leaking pipes is the most common reason for mildew growth, so make sure your pipes are isolated.
Condensation is another big problem in homes with an HVAC system. The temperature difference between the outside and the inside, most often on windows, is what creates condensation. While this issue can be quite localized, it may spread to different parts of the property like the walls or behind wall papers.
How GCD Restoration Remediates Toxic Mold?
We seal the property and isolate the room with the infestation so we can treat it safely. Using organic, non-toxic solutions, we spray the affected part of the house. 99% of the time we achieve ffull mold removal, with extremely rare cases where, due to moisture build up, it starts growing again.
This is why we recommend, when mold is found on the premises, to first removal any moisture producing factors. After that we can give a 100% guarantee that no mold will be growing, though regular maintenance of plumbing and windows is required.
Dehumidifiers as a Solution to Moisture Build-up
As we’ve touched upon in a recent article about dehumidifiers, they enjoy a moderate success in removing moisture from a room. However, they do have some limitations, mainly the temperature conditions.
Most dehumidifying appliances have been rated for optimal temperatures at 65F, and will suffer less efficiency at higher temperatures. The main issue with dehumidifiers is that they require a lot of power to keep their condensation coils cool enough.
The way they draw moisture out of the air is through condensation. Passing air is drawn in by a fan and then forced through cooled coils. Upon contact with the cooler surface of the coils moisture is condensed and deposited in a collection tank underneath the unit.
This cooling requires quite a lot of electricity and it might add substantially to your bills. The only one true, and future-proof solution is to have the property sealed tight and all relevant systems checked. While this can be a more expensive choice, it is far more stable. It creates a more stable environment which gives far more predictable results in terms of mold formation.