When is it okay to buy chemical spray made to kill mold?

When is it okay to buy chemical spray made to kill mold?

As you may have seen in many department stores there are many different brands and types of sprays designated for killing mold. These products may not always be as they claim to be as they tend to only make the mold disappear for a short period of time but in most cases it has been reported that the mold returns. Why is this? A lot of the department store brands that you can purchase contain bleach which does what it does to your clothes – bleaches it… it doesn’t exactly kill it, but it removes the color making it seemingly impossible to see anymore but will return. The store brand sprays are typically recommended to purchase if you are wiping off mildew from your patio furniture, or pulling out a tent that wasn’t properly dried before being stored. These aren’t products that you should use in your home for large areas of mold. When it comes to your indoor environment the consumer should know what they should and shouldn’t be spraying in the air and what you may be breathing in.

There are reasons that you aren’t supposed to spray mold to begin with, When  you spray the mold… the pressure from the spray and the oxygen can release the spores from being contained to one area to multiple areas in your home. The spores are invisible to the human eye so you won’t be able to see them floating through the air but they will… in fact there is a great chance that as you sit and read this mold spores are floating near by. All homes have mold spores, you need to know that it all depends on what kind of mold is in your home and how much. If mold spores are abundant in the built environment there must be a source that needs to be removed and controlled. This is why it is important to have a serious situation evaluated by an environmental professional especially if you believe  your mold problem is causing you or anyone in your home health issues. Keep in mind, if a mold problem is not currently causing health issues long term exposure can and most likely will cause health concerns.

Ask Dr. Jackson Kung’u, Principal Microbiologist at MBL laboratories and he will inform you that dead mold spores are just as harmful to the human lung as the living and as a matter of fact the spore will still carry a toxin. To eliminate mold from growing you need to remove the source if it’s a leak, condensation or high humidity, you will continue to spray the problem but not eliminate it.

In some cases the wording on the labels of mold killing products are misleading. Consumers may have seen the same thing on food label products or cosmetic products. The chemicals render the mold colorless so they aren’t visible but keep coming back! Some consumers will continue to purchase the product thinking that they just need to apply more. If you are out to kill the mold we only recommend this for small cleanup projects like window sills and the best product to use is vinegar.

Indoor molds cause two key problems.

1. They destroy the material that they feed on, including bathroom walls, carpets, insulation, ceilings and any other cellulosic materials in the built environment.

2. Exposure to high concentrations of certain types of mold creates health problems for some individuals. For this reason, materials that are infected with mold need to be removed. In fact, mold is like a cancer, unless it is dealt with and removed, it will continue to grow. The only way to deal with mold is to eradicate it and fix the source.

Getting rid of mold by applying bleach or chemicals is NOT the answer to the problem because dead mold spores are just as harmful to the human lung as live spores. You may have read or heard about the myth of the“Mummy’s Curse” in which all of the Archaeologists that discovered King Tutankhamen’s Tomb eventually died. They, in fact, died from dead aspergillus mold spores that laid dormant for centuries!

In addition, mold spores like Aspergillus and Stachybotrys (black mold) are toxic in both a live form and a dead form. The key to proper mold removal is to remove as many of the mold spores as possible and completely eliminate the types of spores that aren’t typically found outside.

Some mold is toxic and can cause many health issues. In fact, some mold produces mycotoxins that are pathogenic to animals and humans. In 2011 we posted an article on the uses of mold as a biological weapon to illustrate just how toxic mold is.

So ask yourself this… is it really worth putting the risk of your families health into an $8.99 bottle of water/bleach that will not guarantee that it will eradicate the problem? Contact a professional today!

For peace of mind we are always just a phone call away! 1-888-909-6653

Mold Awareness Month Part 3 of 4

As part of mold awareness month, got mold? wants to educate our readers on as much helpful and interesting information about mold awareness as possible. This is why we have conducted a 4 part mold awareness segment for the previous articles please read
part 1 & part 2

For this article we wanted to address the issues of what not to do when you find mold in your home. Many people do things that they will later regret because it causes contamination in the homes by doing things people tell you to do on youtube or by googling answers and not finding the right answers from a reliable source but from someone with little to no experience in the professional mold removal field of services.

There seems to be lots of mis-information on the Internet recommending that you spray chemicals on mold. This article explains why spraying mold will in fact make the situation worse.
WHAT IS MOLD?
Molds are a type of fungi and are neither plant nor animal. There are over 100,000 types of mold with at least 1,000 types found in North America and live in colonies growing on food, fabric, bathroom walls, construction materials, and soil. Mold proliferates through the release of spores into the air we breathe and are not visible to the naked eye.
Indoor molds cause two key problems.
1. They destroy the material that they feed on, including bathroom walls, carpets, insulation, and ceilings.
2. Exposure to high concentrations of certain types of mold creates health problems. For this reason, materials that are infected with mold need to be removed. In fact, mold is like a cancer, unless it is dealt with and removed, it will continue to grow. The only way to deal with mold is to eradicate it.
HOW DOES MOLD GROW?
Most homes and buildings have mold because they offer the three ingredients mold needs to grow:
1. Food, which includes materials high in cellulose content such as paper and wood. Drywall, wallpaper, carpet, ceiling tiles, dust, and dirt, are also food sources for mold.
2. Temperatures of 5 degrees to 38 degrees present the perfect environment for mold.
3. Finally, water is the key ingredient. Mold can not grow without moisture. Where there is moisture, you will find mold. This is one of the reasons that leaking pipes, roofs and ceiling, sewer backups, floods, and condensation end up causing mold issues.
Mold is a growing concern because we spend up to 90 percent of our time indoors, creating a situation ripe for health issues.
KILLING MOLD IS NOT THE ANSWER!
Getting rid of mold by applying bleach or chemicals is NOT the answer to the problem because dead mold spores are just as harmful to the human lung as live spores. You may have read or heard about the myth of the “Mummy’s Curse” in which all of the Archaeologists that discovered King Tutankhamen’s Tomb eventually died. They, in fact, died from dead aspergillus mold spores that laid dormant for centuries!
In addition, mold spores like Aspergillus and Stachybotrys (black mold) are toxic in both a live form and a dead form. The key to proper mold removal is to remove all of the mold spores.
Mold is toxic and can cause many health issues. In fact, mold produces mycotoxins that are pathogenic to animals and humans. In 2011 we posted an article on the uses of mold as a biological weapon to illustrate just how toxic mold is.

 

There seems to be a misconception that getting rid of mold by applying bleach or chemicals is the answer to the problem. This is actually not the case because dead mold spores are just as harmful to the human lung as live spores.
There is actually a historical anecdote about the toxic nature of dead mold spores. You probably have heard of the myth of the “Mummy’s Curse” in which all of the Archaeologists that discovered King Tutankhamen’s Tomb eventually died. In 1922, a team of British archeologists in Egypt found the tomb and by 1929, the eleven people associated with the tomb died of early and “unnatural” causes and this is how the myth of the “Mummy’s Curse” evolved. In reality, the actual cause of death of was the result of inhaling dead Aspergillus mold spores and this is the reason that Archaeologists today wear respirators and suits when they are on a dig site.
In addition, mold spores like Aspergillus and Stachybotrys (black mold) are toxic in both a live form and a dead form. The key to proper mold removal is to remove all of the mold spores. This is what Got Mold? does and the reason we follow an Eight Step Process on all of our projects. Our ultimate goal is to provide Health & Longevity to our clients, their friends, and family.
If you discover mold in your home, don’t take this issue lightly and review one of our earlier articles on Mold Do’s and Don’ts. We give you straight forward information to help you stay healthy and to prevent further spread of spores in your home or business.
Mold is toxic and can cause many health issues. In fact, mold produces mycotoxins that are pathogenic to animals and humans. In 2011 we posted an article on the uses of mold as a biological weapon to illustrate just how toxic mold is.

For more information or if you have any questions regarding mold removal we are always here to help! Don’t hesitate to call and book a consultation or inspection.

PDAP Mould Remediation Guidelines For Private Claimants and First Nations Residents

PDAP Mould Remediation Guidelines For Private Claimants and First Nations Residents
Flooding in Southern Saskatchewan has had on impact on 1000s of residents. The clean up has begun, but of course with any flooding situation, mold is a concern.
According to the Government of Saskatchewan PDAP website:
It is expected that if the proper preventive measures are taken, most flood damages will not lead to the growth of mould. However, if mould is suspected after all reasonable precautionary steps have been taken, the services of a reputable mould remediation company may become necessary. The process will require an air quality test, estimates from contractors and the approval of your PDAP adjustor before the work can begin. You can read more about mould prevention and remediation in Section 3.6.4 of the PDAP Guidelines. (FAQ – Private Claimants – Including First Nations Residents)
Private Claimants can apply for assistance through PDAP. There is a dedicated section on their website devoted to this and can be found here.
When you scroll down to the bottom of their page, you will find a link, PDAP-General Guidelines. This document provides you with general claim guidelines and is very important to review if you intend to seek assistance from PDAP.
With respect to Mould Prevention and Remediation, pages 29, 30, and 31, specifically provide guidelines and information.
According to Section 3.6.4.1 mould prevention is the claimant’s responsibility. PDAP lists the precautionary steps that must be taken to protect the contents and building and assert that if such steps are taken then this should prevent the propagation of mould.
Section 3.6.4.2 states that if mould is still suspected after all the precautionary steps have been taken, the services of a reputable mould remediation company may become necessary. PDAP recommends that the steps listed below must be followed if you intend to contact Got Mold? or other restoration contractors for assistance.
1. The first step in determining if mould is indeed present in a building involves an air quality test. The claimant will need to secure a home inspector or air quality measuring service to perform this test before any remediation efforts begin.
2. If an elevated presence of mould does indeed exist, the claimant will contact a reputable mould remediation company requesting an estimate of costs to perform the recommended remediation steps needed to get clearance.
3. These estimates are to be forwarded to the claimant’s PDAP adjuster who will ensure that the scope of the repairs matches the quoted damage. With the PDAP adjuster’s approval, the mould remediation company may begin their work.
4. Claimant must get itemized invoices from mould remediation companies, outlining materials, labour, travel, mileage, hotels, meals, equipment, overtime hours and any sub-contract work. Failure to provide such documentation may result in limited assistance from PDAP.
5. Once the mould remediators have completed their work, clearance testing needs to be performed by an independent firm (not by the remediators who performed the work as this poses a conflict of interest) to determine if the required remediation was performed adequately. Clearance testing MUST be conducted while the containment materials are still up.
6. Once the clearance has been attained, containment materials may be removed and the repair process can begin.
7. If clearance cannot be given through mould analysis/testing, the contractor should not be paid until clearance can be made by further remediation methods and re-testing (and this at the contractor’s expense, not the client’s expense).
8. The claimant will then submit all applicable itemized invoices to PDAP, along with the favourable clearance test/report.
SUMMARY
If your property was affected by the most recent flooding and you believe that you took all necessary steps to prevent mold and still suspect that mould may be an issue, then PDAP can provide assistance. The Government of Saskatchewan has provided lots of information for potential claimants who want to get mould remediation done on their property, but it is important to follow the steps and procedures they stipulate. The links below should be reviewed if you intend to contact PDAP about a potential mold remediation claim:
PDAP Private Claims Process
FAQ – Private Claimants – Including First Nations Residents
PDAP-General Guidelines (Pages 29, 30, and 31 provide mould prevention and remediation guidelines)
Got Mold? Disaster Recovery Services, Inc. has been specializing in mold remediation since 2009 and has many happy clients. All of the steps listed above, we strongly recommend as well. Got Mold? prides itself on getting the job done right the first time and follows an 8-step process on all of our projects. When you are seeking the assistance of a mold remediation contractor, be sure to get YES answers to these 10 critical questions and be sure to compare apples to apples when you are making your final decision. If you have further questions or need assistance, do not hesitate to contact us. Peace of Mind is just a phone call away!

Important Post-Flooding Advice To Avoid Health Hazards

Important Post-Flooding Advice To Avoid Health Hazards
We need water to live, it brings us life. At the same time, water can be a destructive force which is a particular concern during times of flooding.
More than two weeks has past since the flooding began in Regina, Southern Saskatchewan, and parts of Alberta. Got Mold? has helped and is currently helping many flood affected residents. In the words of one of our happy customers:
I had to cut my holiday short this July (2014) because I got an emergency call that the sewage was pouring into my basement. Pouring it was because of the heavy rains in southeast Saskatchewan this summer! Well it finally stopped and I had made contact with the company Got Mold who said they would come in as soon as they can. Within a day or two my basement started to smell and look a lot better! Their staff are excellent, very professional, and able to handle these offending and hazardous materials in a very safe and sanitary manner. I would recommend Got Mold Saskatoon to anyone at any time. Thank you very much for such wonderful work. (Brenda from Regina)
The primary concern of Water Damage Restoration professionals, like Got Mold?, is not only to help bring your life back to normal, but to ensure that you stay healthy. In the areas we have surveyed and are working in, the water damage is extensive. Consequently, it is important to act quickly because mold, fungi and disease-causing bacteria thrive in water-logged environments.
There are three primary concerns caused by water damage: structural; mold and it’s impact on health; and the threat of hazardous bacteria.
1. STRUCTURAL
Indications that your home may be conducive to mold growth include the following: obvious water damage; condensation on windows; musty odors; water stains; new or increased allergy symptoms; cracked or peeling paint, loose drywall tape and/or wall paper; rusty metal (a sign of high humidity); and drawers or doors that stick.
Mold can literally eat the structure it is feeding on. In an earlier article, we mentioned that a home is an all you can eat buffet for mold because today’s building materials are the perfect food for mold: organic, dead material including wood, drywall, fabric, and paper.
In short, left unchecked, mold will degrade the structural integrity of your property and ultimately reduce its long term value if it is not dealt with.
2. HEALTH
Unfortunately, the problems caused by mold are not just cosmetic. We have written extensively on the health concerns caused by mold which are linked to Cancer, MS, Parkinson’s, Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome, Depression, Hypersensitivity Pneumonitis, Mycotoxicosis, Asthma…Mold is Scary!
According to mycotoxin expert Dr. Harriet Ammann, exposure to indoor molds can damage the systems of your body in the following ways:
  • Vascular: blood vessel fragility, hemorrhage from tissues or lungs
  • Digestive: diarrhea, vomiting, hemorrhage, liver damage, fibrosis and necrosis
  • Respiratory: trouble breathing, bleeding from lungs
  • Neurological: tremors, loss of coordination, headaches, depression, multiple sclerosis
  • Skin: rashes, burning, sloughing, photosensitivity
  • Urinary: kidney toxicity
  • Reproductive: infertility, changes in reproductive cycles
  • Immune: Immunosuppression
  • As documented by our interviews with toxic mold survivors, long term and chronic exposure to mold has caused mycotoxicosis, literally poisoning their bodies. Furthermore, as pointed out by Michael Pinto, even a little exposure to mold can cause health issues. Bottom line, mold is a serious concern and you need to be aware of this.
    Mold is not the only health consideration, the other major issue caused by flooding is the threat of…
    3. HAZARDOUS BACTERIA
    Water provides the perfect environment for harmful bacteria to multiply. When you experience water damage, the longer you wait to begin dealing with the concern, the worse it can get. The more time water sits increases the risk of bio-hazard, meaning category 1 water can turn into category 2 water and eventually category 3 water, which is the most toxic.
    ACT IMMEDIATELY!
    To prevent the onset of mold and reduce the risk of bio-hazard, you need to act fast and begin the clean up process immediately. Ideally, you should hire a PROFESSIONAL restoration contractor and not just your contractor buddy and start the claims process with your insurance company.
    During times of crisis, and particularly because restoration contractors get over-whelmed with too many requests, many victims of flooding tend to take matters into their own hands. If you are forced to do this, then here are some key tips to keep in mind while you are waiting for your restoration professional to arrive:
  • Have the area cleared by emergency workers if you have standing water in an area where fuse boxes and/or electrical circuitry is submerged before attempting to pump out the water.
  • Turn off your gas line.
  • Wear an N95 or N100 respirator mask, available at most hardware and medical supply stores.
  • Wear rubber boots and puncture-resistant gloves. Ideally, don a polypropylene coverall.
  • Be sure to carefully dry any belongings you want to try to save.
  • Items that should be thrown out, particularly if they have been underwater include the following: carpet, carpet padding, and rugs; upholstered furniture; computers, microwaves, window A/C units, or any appliances that have fans; papers and books; and food items, including canned foods if they were in contact with flood waters.
  • We strongly advise against doing your own tear out primarily because you do not want to release potentially harmful mold or asbestos in the atmosphere. This will just make the situation worse and create more costly problems, particularly if asbestos is present and not properly abated.
    When you do meet with your restoration professional don’t be afraid to ask them how they intend to deal with your water damage restoration project. Professionals will:
  • Know how to assess the category of water and extent of damage;
  • Provide you with a scope of work that will assess structural issues based on the class of damage;
  • Outline what contents need to be removed;
  • How to deal with and remove excess water;
  • Provide you with a drying and monitoring strategy using air movers and dehumidifers; and
  • A sanitizing plan to ensure a healthy environment.
  • The primary purpose of water damage restoration is to restore the property to pre-loss condition. Once all the work is complete, hire a Third Party Environmental Consultant to perform post-remediation tests, particularly, if any mold, category 2 or 3 water was present. This final step will provide further peace of mind that the water damage restoration contractor did a professional and competent job. Once a PASS is documented on the clearance test, then confidently rebuild your property during the reconstruction phase and if you so choose, hire your friend, the contractor!
    If you have questions, call us toll free, 1-888-909-6653 or use the form below.

    Regina, Saskatchewan Flood Update

    Regina, Saskatchewan Flood Update
    Currently Got Mold? has an experienced team of disaster recovery specialists in Regina. Our Senior Project Managers, Team Leaders, and workers from Saskatoon are working side by side with new employees that we have hired in Regina to meet the unprecedented demand for our services.
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    Regina, Saskatchewan Flood Update

    In fact, so many properties have been impacted by the flood that we have been inundated with requests for our water restoration services, many more than we anticipated. In less than 10 days, our staff has doubled because of the volume of work we are taking on. Our goal is to help as many residents as we can.
    The safety of our workers is very important. All of our staff are required to wear protective gear and most importantly respirators to protect their lungs. One of the key safety protocols we follow is a Fit Test to ensure that the respirator fits our new employee properly. Pictured below is one of our new workers experiencing the fit test procedure.
    Regina, Saskatchewan Flood Update, mold, mould, flooding, saskatchewan, alberta, manitoba, water, food, temperature, black mold, toxic mold, bathroom renovation, leaky shower, shower liner, moisture, contractors, sheet rock, tile, sewer backups, causes, prevention, education, awareness, sewage, sewer lines, houses, businesses, sewage water, drains, rainfall, groundwater, stormwater, overflow, tree, roots, moisture, cracks, sewer line, pipe, damage, tree, shrub, sanitary main, grease, hot animal fat, toilet paper, paper products, paper towels, disposable diapers, cloth diapers, feminine products, objects, flushed, backflow prevention valves, sump pit drainage system, cooking oil, clogs, replace, pipes, plastic, roots, proper, drainage, eaves-troughs, downspouts, slope, inward, outward, moisture, healthier, living, environment, bacteria, hazardous, health, insurance claim

    Regina, Saskatchewan Flood Update

    One of the key concerns for any property owner is to determine if their insurance will cover the water restoration service. If you have insurance, but are not sure, then give us a call because we can help guide you through the process.
    If your home or business is flooded, call us and schedule an appointment as soon as possible. The early stages of water damage restoration is particularly important because the objective is to remove excess water and begin the drying process to reduce the level of moisture. Ultimately, our goal is to mitigate the proliferation of mold which will begin to flourish within 24 to 48 hours if nothing is done. Since we are are an IICRC certified firm, we have the knowledge to ensure that your property is dried and cleaned up properly.
    We are anticipating many more calls for help and are constantly seeking new disaster recovery workers, so please contact us if you or someone you know needs a job.
    If you have questions, call us toll free, 1-888-909-6653 or use the form below.

    REGINA FLOOD NEWS