8 Mold removal myths from a South Florida mold expert.

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If you smell something odd, or if you are suffering from sinus problems, have an unexplained rash, or have other health issues, you may have a mold problem.  

By calling us at (561) 777-2618  we can visit your home and perform a free South Florida mold inspection.  Don’t take chances with your health, call Get Dry, Inc and put your mind at ease. 

If you live in South Florida then there is a good chance you may have had mold in your home, or you know someone who had mold removed.

Infographic showing signs you may have a mold problem.
If you have any of these symptoms, then you may have a hidden problem which is making you sick. We are happy to provide a free South Florida mold inspection.

 There is no question that South Florida is a wonderful place to live, especially when the northern United States is freezing cold in the winter months.  However, the warm climate and warm ocean temperatures also create an amount of havoc for local homeowners.  One of the major problems associated with life in South Florida is the fact that mold grows easily and rapidly.  All it takes is a small roof leak, a poor window seal, or a leaking plumbing pipe and mold will grow rapidly.  In a moist environment mold growth can start in as little as 24 to 48 hours.  Once mold starts to grow, there is almost no way to stop mold from growing.  Some people will tell you use bleach, that won’t work.  Dry out the space? Nope, if you do that, mold will just go to sleep until the area gets damp again.  How about baking soda?  There are tons of articles that say this will kill mold. Actually, the amount of baking soda needed is probably more than you could imagine.  Also, almost every website article that recommends baking soda, says, mix the baking soda with water.  Wait, mold grows best in moist environments, so how will the baking soda and water method work?  It won’t.   Maybe a small amount or mold or mildew in your shower or kitchen could be handled with bleach, baking soda, vinegar or some other cleaner.

What this article is addressing is mold that results from a plumbing leak, roof leak, or some other more serious type of water intrusion.  When these types of mold disasters happen, our advice is to call an expert because there are more than enough nonsense claims regarding how to remove mold in your home or business.  At Get Dry, Inc. we offer a free South Florida mold inspection.

There are many myths that surround mold and mold removal
Don’t believe all the myths about mold and mold removal. There is only one way to determine if your home has mold, a South Florida mold inspection preformed by a certified mold removal professional.

In this article, we will cover some of the false claims and myths regarding mold removal.  Rather than simply saying, “that won’t work” or this is a myth, we will break down the science behind each topic.  By understanding the science, you will have a clear understanding as to why these statements are false, as well as learn more about the mold removal process.

Myth 1,

If you dry out the area affected by mold, the mold will die. 

While it’s true that mold needs moisture to survive, removing the moisture won’t kill the mold. When mold dries out, a state of hibernation begins & the dry mold will become active once it becomes moist again.  Further more, when mold dries, it becomes brittle, and microscopic spores and will become airborne.   A slight breeze from an air conditioning unit will cause the mold spores to fly all over your home.  Once airborne these mold spores can cause a wide range of health issues.

Myth 2, Mold can be removed or killed by using bleach. 

When bleach is sprayed on mold the effect is discoloration of mold.  This doesn’t remove or kill the mold; it just changes the color of the mold.  The goal of a professional mold remediation company is to remove the mold, killing mold is not possible.  In addition the health issues of using bleach are often similar to the health symptoms of the mold itself.  Common effects of bleach poisoning are difficulty breathing, watery eyes, nausea, and a wide range of other illnesses.  Proper removal of mold requires a certified and licensed professional.  Furthermore the type of mold must be identified. By ordering a free South Florida mold inspection from Get Dry, Inc. we will identify the type of mold, then determine how to remove the mold from your home.

Myth 3, Any handyman can be hired to remove mold. 

A certified mold removal specialist should only remove mold.  While a handyman is capable of performing a wide range of home tasks, mold removal requires the knowledge of handling contaminated items and surfaces.  In addition there are many health related issues that must be addressed when removing mold.  The fact that mold spores could become airborne, and special equipment is required to remove mold, makes the mold removal process much more complex.  In addition if the process of mold removal is not handled correctly, the mold could spread throughout the entire home.  By hiring a certified mold removal professional you will be guaranteed the job is done safely and correctly.

Myth 4, It takes a long time for mold to grow.

Actually it only takes 24 to 48 hours for mold to start growing.  In a dark wet environment mold will grow quickly.  The problem is, the places in which mold grows and thrives are usually hidden.  Areas such as, behind walls, under appliances, inside an attic or in a closed closets are not areas often seen.  Mold is usually found because a resident smells something strange, or they may become ill and mold is suspected.  The reality is that while the mold has been there for a while, it started growing rapidly.  Read: The ultimate guide to mold to learn more about mold growth.

Myth 5, Wiping away or fogging mold will insure it won’t come back. 

Some companies that claim to offer mold removal advertise demolition free mold removal.  They state that they can simply wipe away the mold.  Other companies offer a fogging process in which they spray an antimicrobial pesticide in the mold in an attempt to kill it.  The reality is that, unless you remove the source of the moisture the mold will grow back.  The tiny mold spores will travel through and air and start the growing process over again in a short time.  While cleaning mold off a surface such as drywall, may make you feel better, the feeling will be short lived.  Once mold takes hold the mold will grow roots, also referred to as hyphae, wiping away mold without eliminating the roof system will only allow the mold to grow back.  Removing mold can be looked at in the same fashion as removing weeds from your yard.  You can cut the stem, but if you don’t get the root, the mold will grow back.  In addition, mold is a living organism with the goal of survival. If mold can find a way to regrow, and survive it will continue to spread.

Myth 6, Black mold is the only dangerous mold. 

While black mold (Stachybotrys) is one of the more dangerous mold types, it’s not the only one that can cause health problems.  Actually the color of the mold has nothing to do with how poisonous the mold is.  Different molds produce different levels of mycotoxins.  Some of the more poisonous molds are Chaetomium, Aspergillus, Penicillium, Fusarium, & Alternaria.  While these molds each have a certain look, sometimes it’s difficult to tell one from another.  The best way to tell what type of mold is growing in your home is the have a sample tested.

Myth 7, Mold removal is always expensive and mold removal companies are expensive.

This isn’t always true. Sometimes your homes insurance company covers the cost of mold and water damage removal.  At Get Dry, Inc. we are experienced at handling insurance claims.  Many of the home damage projects we handle are covered by homeowners insurance.   While it’s true that there is no way to remove mold damage in a home by using fast, low cost methods, one thing is for sure, if the mold or water damage is not removed correctly the first time, cost will skyrocket the second time around.  Because of the toxic nature of many mold types, the smart decision is to only hire a professional credentialed company to do it right the first time.

Myth 8, It there is no strange smell there is no mold.  

While one of the signs of mold damage is a strange smell, mold doesn’t always give off an odor.  Generally mold has been described as smelling like old socks, or rotten meat.  Mold could take on an earthy or musty smell.  However, if the mold is hidden inside a wall, the odor can become less noticeable. In a mold situation it’s usually the mycotoxin that has become a gas that makes to smell.  Also, the actual mold may smell but the toxic mold spores may not smell.  When the odorless mold spores become airborne the microscopic spores are inhaled they will cause health problems.   In addition, the smell of mold may be masked by other smells such as baked foods, pet odors.   While often mold will cause a wide range of odors, it’s entirely possible that you could have a mold problem and not notice any smell.  This is why you should have a South Florida home mold inspection if you have had any sort of water damage.

The bottom line is, only a professional South Florida mold inspection could determine the type of mold.

Picture of black mold hidden behind a wall.
Exposed black mold located behind a wall. While not the only toxic mold, this is a dangerous one. When moisture is hidden inside a wall, the mold has plenty of time to grow and infect your home.

When it comes to mold and water damage one there is one fact to keep in mind.  Quick action is mandatory.  The longer the environment remains damp the greater the damage.   Mold could grow in any type of light, however it grows best and fastest in dark locations.   Unfortunately these dark areas are hidden places in your home.   If you have a flood, removing the visible water is a no brainer.  However, it’s the hidden water that found it’s way behind the wall that starts the mold growth cycle.

Once moisture is trapped behind a homes wall the cycle of, evaporation – condensation – precipitation begins.  This is the cycle that fuels our weather, water evaporates and become clouds, the clouds build more condensation, and the result is rain, (precipitation) In a home water damage situation, this cycle takes place in your homes walls or attic.  The only way to break this cycle is to disrupt the pattern by drying the inside of the wall.  One way is to open the wall, or as a professional mold restoration company we have specialized equipment that can get behind your homes wall to remove moisture.

If you suspect you have a mold problem, or if your home has water damage, call us at 561-777-2618 we service all of Broward County, Palm Beach County and Martin County.