What You Need to Know About Black Mold
What Is Black Mold?
Stachybotrys chartarum is the type of mold often called “black mold”. Sensational news reports warn about the dangers of black mold and these stories can be alarming and confusing. Any mold in your home should be treated with caution – stay out of affected areas and don’t touch or disturb the mold.
How Do I Tell If It’s Black Mold?
Since many types of mold can cause serious health effects, you should contact a qualified mold remediation company regardless of the color or type of mold. In many instances, multiple types of mold can exist in the same house or structure. If you suspect that you have a mold problem, contact a SERVPRO franchise professional immediately.
When water intrudes into your property, mold growth can start in as little as 48 hours. Consider the following mold facts:
- Mold is present almost everywhere, indoors and outdoors.
- Mold spores are microscopic, float along in the air, and may enter your home through windows, doors, or AC/heating systems or even hitch a ride indoors on your clothing or a pet.
- Mold spores thrive on moisture. Mold spores can quickly grow into colonies when exposed to water. These colonies may produce toxins harmful to humans and pets.
- Before mold remediation can begin, any sources of water or moisture must be addressed. Otherwise the mold may return.
- Mold often produces a strong, musty odor, and that odor can lead you to possible mold problem areas.
- Even higher-than-normal indoor humidity can support mold growth. Keep indoor humidity below 45 percent.
Mold Damage Tips
What You Can Do Until Help Arrives
In as little as 48 hours, mold can quickly become a problem in your home or business when there’s a water intrusion, like a roof leak or leaking water line. Mold can cause health effects and can also cause significant damage to your property. SERVPRO® professionals have the training, protective gear, and specialized equipment necessary to handle your mold problem.
If you have a mold problem in your home or business, your primary focus should be safety:
- Significant mold growth can occur in 48-72 hours.
- Mold may present a greater risk to children, the elderly, and anyone with respiratory problems.
- A strong, musty odor may indicate hidden mold behind drywall or under carpeting.
What to Do:
- Stay out of affected areas.
- Turn off the HVAC system and fans.
- Contact a SERVPRO for mold remediation services.
What NOT to Do:
- Don’t touch or disturb the mold.
- Don’t blow air across any surfaces with visible or suspected mold growth.
- Don’t attempt to dry the area yourself.
- Don’t spray bleach or other disinfectants on the mold.
If you find mold in your home, call us at 208-457-1234
Your Belongings and Mold Damage
Water and mold damage affects not only the structure of your house but also your belongings. SERVPRO understands that your home is more than a structure; your family’s furniture, clothing, keepsakes, and other belongings help transform a house into a home.
SERVPRO specializes in restoring contents damaged by fire, water, or mold. Our expertise can help you save money while preserving precious keepsakes that can’t be replaced. We pretest your contents to determine what items can be restored back to their condition before the water and mold damage. SERVPRO utilizes several methods of cleaning your contents, including:
- Dry Cleaning - Used for cleaning light residues or to pre-clean prior to wet cleaning.
- Wet Cleaning - An effective cleaning method for removing moderate to heavy residues.
- Spray and Wipe -Effective for items that can’t withstand wet cleaning.
- Foam Cleaning - Used for upholstery fabrics that might shrink or bleed if wet cleaned.
- Abrasive Cleaning - Involves agitation of the surface being cleaned.
- Immersion Cleaning - Contents are dipped into a bath of the cleaning product.
If your home requires extensive restoration or cleaning, SERVPRO can conduct an organized, efficient move-out of the affected area. Move-out will provide several benefits, including:
- A quicker remodeling process
- Protecting items from potential damage
- Protecting contents from further on-site damage
When restoration is completed, they will work with you to coordinate the move-in according to your needs. The services offered upon move-in may depend on your insurance coverage.
Water-damaged electronics can present a serious hazard. Do not attempt to turn on or operate any electrical device that you suspect has been damaged by water. SERVPRO can coordinate the restoration of your electronics, including:
- Television sets
- DVD players
- And more
The key to restoring electronics is taking prompt action to prevent further damage. They start by cleaning the exterior of electronic devices to help stop further corrosion and damage. Electronics will be cleaned and inspected by a qualified electronics technician.
Document / Photograph Drying
When your valuable documents, including photographs, are damaged by water or mold, extreme caution should be taken to help ensure the water damage does not destroy the document. Although some documents may not be restored to pre-water damage condition, SERVPRO can save a great deal and help minimize additional damage.
Depending on the type of documents and the level of water and mold damage, we have five options for the restoration of documents:
- Air Drying
- Freezer Drying
- Vacuum Freeze Drying
- Vacuum Thermal Drying