The discovery of black mold growing in your home can only mean one thing: you have a moisture problem somewhere. Where there is moisture along with no ventilation, there will usually be mold and mildew. Once discovered, black mold must be eradicated as soon as possible to prevent further damage and any contact with your home's residents. Small areas can likely be cleaned yourself, but if the damage is extensive or covers a larger area, professional help may be necessary. If you are dealing with a mold problem, read below for tips on eradication and prevention.
1. Keep in mind that because exposure to mold can be harmful, most of the the clothing and supplies used for cleaning should be disposed of in a sealed bag before putting them in the trash. For cleaning mold, wear the following:
- Choose old clothing that you can just toss after use and make sure it covers your arms and legs. Button the shirt up all the way and button your cuffs.
- You will need an N-95 mask, usually found at the hardware store.
- Long PVC or rubber gloves (try to find some that go up to your elbows).
2. Make sure the room is well-ventilated by opening windows and doors, and use a portable fan if possible. Keep in mind that the fan may need to be discarded after use, unless you can properly clean it. Turn off any central heating or air-conditioning systems.
3. Dish detergent, bleach, and water mixed together in equal parts should be sufficient for most smaller areas that are easy to access.
4. Use construction-strength trash bags to dispose of moldy items.
5. Mold that is inside drywall or in the carpet padding can quickly become an overwhelming job for the do-it-yourselfer.
When To Call the Professional
If you or any family members have a heightened sensitivity to mold spores, such as those with asthma, consider using a professional mold-cleaning service. Even for those without a specific sensitivity, mold can cause throat, eye, and sinus irritation, even when taking the precautions above.
If you have mold in your duct system, you will likely need a professional cleaning. Mold specialists will use a camera to inspect deep inside the ducts and then clean the affected areas. Call on a professional mold-cleaning service like Central Flood Management Inc for larger remediation projects as well, such as walls and floors.
Controlling moisture the key to mold prevention.
- Don't allow water to sit on your carpets for any length of time.
- Take care of plumbing leaks immediately.
- Turn on your bathroom's exhaust fans when showering.
- Use dehumidifiers in damp areas and fans in enclosed spaces.
- Keep a close watch for the appearance of water in basements and crawl spaces.
- Redirect water away from your foundation with french drains and grading.
Mold can be dangerous, both for people and your home's structure, so keep an eye out for it and call in a professional for more information and for proper and safe eradication.