How Do You Remove Mold?

Mold Remediation

Studies show that more than 50% of homes and more than 85% of commercial buildings in the U.S. have water damage and mold. Mold spores are detectable in almost every single home, and are present virtually everywhere in the outdoor environment. Chances are good that mold is hiding somewhere in your home or office already. Many times water damage and flooding only serve to feed the mold that is already present, allowing it to grow and branch out into new areas of your living space.

We are certified IICRC Applied Microbial Remediation Technicians at DryDocs. This means that we have been trained, tested, and proven ourselves with the latest techniques and industry-accepted approaches for dealing with any level of mold contamination. We have the advanced equipment needed to minimize the spread of mold spores and toxic pollutants from mold.

Where Does Mold Grow?

Mold can grow in many more places than you may think. Mold requires many of the same things to survive as we do, such as water, humidity, and a food source. This food source can be nearly any kind of biological surface. Typically this is cellulose, which is in wood and paper surfaces. However, we humans are constantly shedding skin cells. Though you may not see them, your skin cells quickly coat many surfaces in your home. This includes the inside of your air duct system. Mold spores are microscopic and float along in the air. They may enter your home through windows, doors, or your air ducts. Spores will even hitch a ride indoors on your clothing or on a pet. This means that mold can grow nearly anywhere there is enough moisture in your home.

What are the Dangers of Mold?

Not all molds are dangerous to all people. The most prevalent danger that mold poses in your home is due to mycotoxins. Mycotoxins are the toxic byproducts of some types of mold. These toxins help the mold to kill off any other types of mold who are competing for the same place to live. This is great for the mold, but obviously can be very dangerous to us, our children, and our pets.

What do Mycotoxins do?

Mycotoxins can be absorbed by the airways, skin, and intestinal lining. Once inside the body, they trigger inflammation and oxidative stress. Prolonged exposure to mycotoxins in your home can result in respiratory infections and conditions. These can include upper and lower respiratory disease, chronic fatigue, and even cancer. The most susceptible people to adverse health effects from mold are children, the elderly, and the people with compromised immune systems.

Approximately 25% of Americans also carry a gene called HLA-DR (human leukocyte antigen). In these people, the body is unable to recognize toxins as a foreign invader, so they don’t produce any antibodies to remove mycotoxins This genetic condition makes it incredibly difficult for these affected people to remove the mycotoxins from their bodies, which means they suffer a more extreme amount of damage to their organs and bodily systems.

Mycotoxins worsen immune dysfunction associated with chronic disease and slow or prevent healing processes in the body. They also disturb hormonal balance in the body, and reduce tolerance to any type of stress.

A percentage of people simply are allergic to molds, whether the mold produces any mycotoxins or not. If you are one of these people, you may be exhibiting symptoms of mold exposure while thinking your symptoms are due to seasonal or pet allergies.

What are the Symptoms of Mold Exposure?

Some molds produce a strong musty odor, which may help lead you to the source of the mold. This smell also means that you are being exposed to the mold and/or its mycotoxins. Other molds have no odor. Because of this, it is important to watch for the symptoms of exposure to mold and/or mycotoxins. They can include:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Coughing/Wheezing
  • Chronic burning in the throat and nose
  • Dizziness/Loss of balance
  • Headache
  • Eye Irritation
  • Fatigue
  • Rashes and irritation of the skin
  • Vision changes and reduced color sensitivity
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Muscle weakness
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Hearing loss
  • Increased sensitivity to allergens and chemicals
  • Muscle and/or joint pain
  • Slowed reactions
  • Depression and/or anxiety

It is possible to have one, many, or none of these symptoms while you are being exposed to the toxic byproducts of mold in your home or business. If you are concerned about potential mold in your home, contact us and we can help you determine how to make your home or office healthy again.

Can I Spray Mold with Bleach to Kill it?

The problem with using bleach to kill mold is that cleaners and chemicals do nothing to stop mycotoxins from being toxic. A colony of dead mold is just as dangerous to your health as living mold. Furthermore, by spraying and disturbing the mold colony, you can actually spread viable spores and mycotoxins to other areas of your home, putting yourself at higher risk for toxic effects.

When a mold colony is disturbed, it can cause the mold to enter sporulation. Sporulation is an immediate release of vast numbers of living mold spores. This occurs because mold is attempting to preserve its existence by releasing millions or even billions of spores, which can travel throughout your whole home or business. These spores can be as small as two millionths of a meter across. This allows them to access nearly any location which isn’t completely sealed off.

How do We Get Rid of Mold?

Removing mold can be a difficult and dangerous process. As a result, mold remediation is best performed by trained experts that understand proper mold removal. You want mold gone, not covered up. We remove the mycotoxins and spores from contaminated areas and take proper precautions to prevent the mold from returning in the future.

We have the training and equipment to create containment areas which have a negative air pressure differential. This means that any leaks in the containment are moving inward, preventing mold, spores, and mycotoxins from spreading. We have industry-leading air filtration systems and mold disposal technology to properly remove it from the affected areas.

The goal of any mold remediation project is to reach better-than-normal conditions in the affected area. No company can claim to remove absolutely all mold. This is because mold spores are present virtually everywhere in the environment. This means the best possible outcome in our verification testing is that we have even less mold contamination than the unaffected areas of your home or building. We leave your home safe and healthy, so you can have peace of mind.

What if Your Home Floods?

Nobody is truly prepared for disaster to strike, but when it does, the most important thing is to have the right people there to help. DryDocs is available 24/7 for emergency or disaster response. Flood cleanup and mold remediation are our specialties.

DryDocs is your emergency response team! Time is absolutely critical to you and us. We will arrive at your location as soon as possible, day, night, snow, rain, or shine. We understand how important it is to get to work immediately.

DryDocs provides an emergency response service to help reduce or prevent secondary damages. Water damage left untreated can cause issues such as wood rot, mold and microbial growth, pathogenic contamination, and indoor air pollution. Our goal is to mitigate/minimize further damage and extract with the least invasive approach available.

When disaster does strike, call the experts at DryDocs anytime. We are here 24 hours a day, 7 days a week! We will be there to help! Faster to disaster means faster to dry!

What Should You Do?

For you as a homeowner, the most important tool is knowledge. Know what to do first. Be safe, and be smart. When a flood happens in your home, you need to know what steps to follow, and how to handle it.

Above all, be safe! Water in your home can create dangerous situations! Here are just a few potential safety hazards:

  • Water in a flooded basement or room can interact with your electrical systems and create very serious conditions.
  • Water in your house can become grossly contaminated or pathogenic depending on what it comes in contact with. Plugged sewers that backup into your house or groundwater flooding into your basement is considered Category 3 water. This is sometimes referred to as “Black Water”. It can cause serious illness and disease that could result in death..
  • Cut or puncture wounds in a flood water situation is a concern. Also, the ability to see a hazardous object under water is greatly compromised.
  • Water in ceilings or walls can add significant weight to the structure. Flooding in ceilings and walls can cause collapse.

Dealing with the Source of Water

Now that you have identified safety concerns, it is important to identify where water is coming from. Correcting the leak or stopping the intrusion of water is important. If flooding or leaks come back, you can have serious problems in the future.

Fast response time is critical to prevent secondary damages. This is why DryDocs provides an emergency response service and is available 24/7. Water damage doesn’t wait until a more convenient time. We start flood cleanup as soon as possible.

The first step when your house floods is to determine where the water is coming from. This can be difficult. Call DryDocs to help you figure out whose help you need.

  • Call a plumber if it is a leaking pipe, sink, toilet, or drain. They can also help if your water heater is leaking, or your washing machine flooded your house.
  • A leaking roof or a skylight can allow water into your ceiling and walls. A contractor or a roofing company may be able to help you stop the leak in this situation.
  • Flooded basements can also be caused by a crack in the wall or foundation. A broken basement window can allow groundwater to enter the building.
  • If you are renting, call your property management company or maintenance team. Let them know what happened.
  • No matter how you got water in your house, the experts at DryDocs can help you.

Limit traffic through the affected areas

  • Foot traffic could bring further contamination and spread moisture and contaminants to other areas.
  • After you identify safety concerns, you may want to remove any valuable or precious keepsakes from the affected area if possible. These may include electronics, furniture, pets, and your kids’ favorite toys.

Why are We the Experts?

The Science of Drying

What does it mean to be an expert? Here at DryDocs, we have the knowledge and resources not only to handle your disaster, but to remediate the affected materials as efficiently and painlessly as possible. Our goal is to make your home healthy again, and to keep your wallet healthy as well. We are trained with the latest techniques and equipment, and certified by the IICRC for Water Damage Restoration and Mold Remediation. This cutting edge technology enables us to “dry before we pry”.  We approach every project wanting to preserve as much material and content as we can. Removing your drywall, your brand new carpeting, or your gorgeous hardwood floors is always a last resort.

We use high-volume air movers and industrial dehumidifiers to evaporate and remove water at lightning speed. These are effective methods, but some drying projects can be incredibly complex, and require innovative solutions to achieve your drying goals while preserving the materials in your home.

  • You may have water leaking behind a wall that is coated with wallpaper or paint that is not permeable to water. We utilize high-tech injection drying systems to dry from the inside of your wall cavity.
  • You may have antique hardwood floors which collect and absorb water that has leaked through the cracks to the sub floor. We make use of vacuum mat systems and heated drying chamber solutions. These technologies can pull moisture out of the most challenging spaces.

What About My Insurance Company?

DryDocs will work with your insurance company, eliminating the concerns of weaving through coverage and payments.  We can bill your insurance directly, while providing them with all the information they need for your claim. We document and monitor drying conditions at every step of the process.

When we arrive, we use non-invasive moisture meters and thermal imaging cameras to determine the perimeter of the flooding. We have the ability to accurately and thoroughly measure and document moisture content of difficult to access areas. We collect all the information your insurance company needs.

While we are drying, we monitor the environment with thermo-hygrometers, moisture meters, and infrared thermometers. This allows us to measure relative humidity, air temperature, surface temperature of materials, moisture content, and evaporation potential. Our high level of science and technology allows us to perform our drying projects with the highest amount of precision. This leads to the most efficient drying time.