Green Star Eco Services’ Cabot Rank, a Texas licensed mold remediation contractor (MRC1437), recently presented at a Houston-area business networking breakfast sponsored by BNI Power Players. He fielded questions about where we find mold in homes and how we respond to it.
Q: We had a slight leak in Hurricane Harvey, and because our home is newer, we had the roofer, because it was their issue, come out and demo everything. The other day I walked into my closet and we have really tall baseboards and I noticed because all this stuff isn’t real wood anymore, it was crinkling up. How would you all handle that? –Shawne, homeowner in the Houston Heights
A (Cabot): The first thing that we would do is come in and pop that baseboard off to see if there is anything behind it. At that point in time, if I find something behind it, I’m going to push it back and turn around and tell you, hey this is something that we need to get your clothes out, especially if it’s in your closet because we don’t want the mold getting on your clothes or shoes because it will ruin them. But in that scenario, then typically what we would do is put a zipper door on that closet, exhaust out, do everything that we typically do to make sure that we remove all of that.
Anytime you see cracks, things of that nature, especially in caulk – caulk is fungible, so it’s going to move and it’s got a good amount of movement before it actually cracks. If you see it starting to crack, then that’s one of those times that something is getting wet down there, and we ought to come check and take a look at it.
Q: What if you have mold in your kitchen but you want to save the granite countertops?
A: A lot of people here have granite countertops. Well, a lot of granite countertops are placed on a cabinet-grade plywood. Well, if that cabinet-grade plywood sits underneath your granite countertop and if there is ever a leak, [then the moisture will seep into the plywood under the countertops]. We had this happen the other day, where the lady wanted to save her countertops.
I initially saved the countertops and the post-assessment [mold test] came in and said that we failed. We failed because underneath the granite countertops that we had to save was a piece of plywood and the water had run between the granite and the plywood and the entire piece of plywood, once we were allowed to finally take out the granite, was completed molded for about five feet. It was really nasty.
Q: How do I know if my HVAC system contains any mold?
A: You’re coming up on summertime and one of things you want to check is air conditioning systems. People should take the time to pull off a vent cover to see if it’s been sealed to the sheetrock. If it hasn’t been sealed to the sheetrock, then lo and behold guess what’s going to happen? You’ve got 125-130 degrees up in the attic, it’s 75 degrees downstairs in your house and water condensation is going to form on that metal box. It’s going to start molding out in the sheetrock in and around that vent, and it will do the same thing inside the vent box itself.
Green Star Eco Services is a Texas licensed mold remediation company (RCO1182) based in Houston, primarily serving the Houston/Galveston region and Texas Hill Country. We provide mold remediation, flood restoration, water damage emergency response, HVAC remediation, deck, dock and fence restoration and repair, house and roof washing, and commercial services for warehouses, retail centers, hotel and restaurant buildings, and grocery and convenience stores. Our treatment is environmentally friend as we use Cal-Brite, a non-toxic, biodegradable and USDA-approved cleaning solution to kill mold. We also use mold inhibitors as part of our full-service treatment, which also includes operation of air purification equipment and industrial HEPA vacuums.