Ever noticed that some mold looks like black speckles and other mold looks like greenish water stains? It’s not that the mold is in a different stage of growth. The appearance of mold varies by species.
Which do we see in homes and businesses when we come in to remediate? There is the notorious black mold, also known as stachybotrys chartarum or stachybotrys atra. Another black mold is Cladosporium, which triggers allergies in many people. People with weakened immune systems can get fungal infections
People without regular allergies may get itchy eyes and sore throats and people with asthma are at risk when exposed to various mold types.
We also often see Aspergillus and Alternaria. Aspergillus likes damp areas that have flooded or are otherwise humid. Alternaria might go for upholstery, food, clothing and more within a house.
Of course, if you’ve seen fluffy white and green mold growing on bread or overripe fruits, it was likely penicillium. And blue cheese is mold with penicillium roqueforti! The antibiotic penicillin is derived from penicillium.
Researchers advanced the development of penicillin by working with Penicillium chrysogeum found on a cantaloupe. On a related note, a friend once noticed a strange odor in her SUV that grew stronger by the day. Upon investigating, she saw that a cantaloupe had escaped a grocery bag and was lodged under a seat, where it became rather moldy. Scary!
Mold is all around us, especially outdoors. There might be as many as 100,000 mold species and, for the most part, we humans come in contact with a relative few.
The problem is when mold takes root within a home in areas that are wet or humid. For example, a slow leak from a pipe into a floor or wall easily creates a mold-friendly habitat. Roof leaks are also typical sources of water for mold inside a house. We also often see mold develop in malfunctioning air conditioning systems. When this occurs, some people will refer to the contaminated structure as a sick building.
One crucial component of mold remediation is containment. Mold emits spores that become airborne and land somewhere to spread the mold. Before we start working, we seal off the affected area(s) of a home or business.
You might notice a smell. Or, you could have mold in a hidden space that goes undetected. We often find it in HVAC, behind walls, underneath and behind cabinets or underneath floors.
The response to mold depends on where it is and how much there is. If you have mold on a hard surface, you could clean that with bleach and with plenty of ventilation in the space. However, do not use bleach on any porous material or surface. It will break down and become food for mold.
If you see a fair amount of contiguous mold growth and suspect that it spreads to areas you can’t see, a professional inspection is recommended. Again, we protect the other areas of the home while removing mold damaged materials and clean with a specialized cleaner. We do the job wearing specialized protective equipment and utilizing many specialized tools and machines to make sure the job is done properly.
And when we are done, the home or business is inspected to ensure the mold is gone. We are licensed mold experts and we know how vital it is to properly provide mold remediation.