Black Mold

Design is a funny word

What is Black Mold?

Toxic black mold, also known as Stachybotrys chartarumcan, can overwhelm any homeowner and affect the indoor air quality. Black mold is a type of fungus that is dark black in color and often has a distinct musty smell. It produces toxins called mycotoxins. The mycotoxins of toxic black mold can cause people to suffer toxic symptoms.

Black Mold Symptoms

  • Respiratory problems
  • Skin inflammation
  • Hemorrhage
  • Irritation of the mucous membranes
  • Damage to internal organs
  • Mental impairment
  • Tiredness
  • Nausea
  • Immune system suppression

Mold Removal Contact Us

Black mold is most likely to appear in warm, humid, and damp areas of the home.

Basements, kitchens, and bathrooms are often susceptible. By identifying black mold and understanding how to prevent its growth, you can keep your home safe.

How can I check for Black Mold?

Here are some ways to identify black mold inside your home. If you notice any of the signs listed below, contact us immediately for mold removal services.

1. Look for dark black clustered growths, especially in warm, moist rooms. Pay attention to your symptoms when you enter the room. Even if you don’t see mold, the spores or mycotoxins can still cause symptoms.

2. Look for causes of mold growth, such as a leak, lack of ventilation, or old food or papers.

3. Resolve any issues that are causing mold growth immediately.

 

   

 

Our mold inspections will identify your specific toxins.

How Can I Prevent Black Mold?

Overall, by keeping your indoor humidity low and your space clean you decrease the chances of Black Mold from forming. Keep an eye out for small growths and take action immediately.

Do’s

*Clean and vacuum your home on a regular basis.
*Inspect your home’s rain gutters to make sure they are clean and not blocking water drainage.
*Make sure windows and doors are open for ventilation when you bathe. These activities can increase moisture in the air causing black mold.
*Use a dehumidifier. A humid home is especially vulnerable to Black Mold growth.

Don’ts

*Don’t leave old books, newspapers, or wood sitting unused for long periods.
*Don’t put carpet in rooms like bathrooms, kitchens, and basements.
*Don’t neglect leaks from pipes or groundwater. Make sure to fix them as soon as possible.

Can’t Breathe at Work? Professional Mold Testing for the Office Environment

The term “sick building syndrome” was first coined in 1986 by the World Health Organization.

And while it refers to a building where people begin to feel unwell for no apparent reason, most sick building cases can usually be traced back to one culprit: toxic mold.

Although typically found in kitchens, basements and bathrooms, mold can thrive in any place subject to high levels of humidity.

Mold infestations can also spring up after water-related mishaps, such as burst pipes, roof leaks or flooding. And once mold forms, it’s easy for it to spread through your building via your HVAC system, leading to potential health problems for your workers and customers.

 

Why mold can be bad news for your business

Mold infestations can be a serious problem, especially ones involving toxic black mold. This mold feeds on materials found in most offices: carpet, insulation and drywall and releases spores into the atmosphere. When ingested or inhaled, the spores can cause a host of unpleasant, even dangerous health problems.

Common black mold exposure symptoms include:

  • Chronic sneezing and coughing
  • Irritation to the eyes, nose and throat
  • Rashes
  • Persistent headaches
  • Chronic fatigue

But the health effects of black mold can be dangerous in severe cases of prolonged exposure. In addition to allergic reactions to mold spores, these symptoms may include vomiting/nausea and bleeding in the nose and even lungs.

We should also note that while black mold is the most dangerous type of mold found growing indoors, many of the other common indoor mold types can lead to allergic reactions and respiratory problems.

Why your office needs professional mold testing

The benefits of professional mold testing include:

  • You might (rightly) suspect that you have mold in your building, but a professional can tell you for sure whether your building is healthy or not.
  • You’ll get detailed, accurate results on the location and amount of mold in the building.
  • Not all mold is immediately apparent. Some infestations grow behind your walls and can fester for years. Left unchecked, this mold growth can cause not just health problems, but potential structural damage. Professional mold testing can expose this issue.

A professional mold testing expert should also provide you with some advice on how to prevent mold outbreaks, such as employing dehumidifiers and exhaust fans.

Professional mold testing for your office

It’s normal to find some level of microorganisms in your indoor air. But excessive moisture inside your building from leaks, flood and other water sources can throw your indoor environment out of balance and lead to significant health hazards.

At Air Care & Restoration, our team can provide professional mold testing and inspection to ferret out any harmful bacteria in your building.

We’ve designed a 12-step mold testing and mold removal process that includes evaluation, containment, protection, HEPA vacuuming, surface sealing, scrubbing and a certificate of completion.

If you’d like, we can also restore drywall, trim, flooring and other building materials for a complete restoration of your indoor space. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you, your workers and your customers breathe better.

5 Signs You Need Mold Remediation in Allentown

Mold is everywhere, including here in Allentown. In fact, it’s been on our planet for at least 100 million years! Scientists estimate that there are 100,000 different species of mold in the environment, some more dangerous than others. In this article, we’re exploring scenarios that could point to a mold problem in your residential or commercial property – those that require an Allentown mold remediation service.

 

The following are the top five signs you might need Allentown mold remediation

1. A home inspector reported mold
2. You see discoloration on walls or surfaces
3. You smell a musty odor
4. You or someone in your home or office has unusual or recurring health symptoms
5. There’s been a leak, flood, or another water intrusion

Keep reading to learn more about these signs that mold remediation in your home of office is right for you.

A home inspector reported mold

If you’re buying or selling a home, a home inspector will likely visually examine the interior and exterior of your property to look for signs of mold. They often take a close look at seemingly hidden areas, identifying mold vulnerabilities such as leaks and moisture collection spots. Because mold can grow without you knowing, it may be surprising if an inspector discovers it. However, an Allentown mold remediation service can rid your property of this potential hazard to ensure structural integrity and protect the new homeowners’ health.

You see discoloration on walls or surfaces

Another sign you might need mold remediation is discoloration on walls or structural surfaces, including tile walls or floors, underneath sinks, behind refrigerators, around air conditioners, and other damp areas.

While the visible characteristics vary depending on the type of mold, look for these classic markers:

• Color: black, green, brown, yellow, grey, blue, red, or white
• Texture: Fuzzy, slimy, velvety, fluffy, grainy, or spongey
• Shape: Irregular spots in various sizes and shapes

If you’re unsure whether the discoloration is mold or something else, seek help from an experienced Allentown mold remediation company.

You smell a musty odor

If areas in your home smell musty, stale, or pungent – especially paired with discoloration – you may need Allentown mold remediation. Keep in mind that dead, dormant, and some fungal species don’t produce an odor but can be just as harmful to your property and health.

You or someone in your home or office has unusual or recurring health symptoms

If you or someone in your home or office experiences adverse health effects after spending extended periods inside, it could be an indicator of mold. Mold can be allergenic, pathogenic, or toxigenic, each having a different impact on health.

• Allergenic – Can aggravate allergy-like symptoms, including runny nose, sore throat, itchy or burning eyes
• Pathogenic – Can cause infections in people with a compromised immune system or, in some cases, those who are healthy
• Toxigenic – Can cause potentially serious health consequences for anyone who is exposed to sufficient quantities

Could mold exposure be causing your health symptoms? Use this symptom checker to find out.

There’s been a leak, flood, or another water intrusion

Excess moisture from pipes, roof leaks, air conditioners, floods, or other sources often provide favorable conditions for mold to grow – even in areas you cannot see. A good rule of thumb is to call an Allentown mold remediation company if you notice moisture buildup anywhere in your home.

To learn more about Allentown mold remediation, visit our website or call (610) 890-6300.

Allentown Mold Removal: Why Do I Need to Remove Mold?

Mold Removal in Allentown? While finding a few small dark, fuzzy spots or smelling a musty odor may seem inconsequential, it could be the first signs of mold intrusion – or an indicator of a hidden problem with the potential for severe consequences. Without professional mold removal, you could pay a hefty price. If you’re on the fence about whether to remove the mold on your property, consider following the three P’s: Promote, Protect, and Prevent.

 

  • Promote good health
  • Protect your property
  • Prevent the problem from worsening

Promote good health

Mold can be harmful to your health. Depending on the type, mold can create a myriad of health symptoms that can range from mild to severe. Allergenic species can trigger allergy-like symptoms, such as congestion, coughing or wheezing, and sore throat. Pathogenic species can cause lung and other infections, especially for those who are immunocompromised. Finally, toxigenic species, such as the infamous black mold, are the most harmful of all. They produce mycotoxins, which can cause such toxic symptoms as respiratory problems, skin inflammation, bleeding, internal organ damage, or immune system suppression. An Allentown mold removal company can rid your space of these potentially harmful effects so that you, your family, or commercial property occupants are safe.

Protect your property

When mold is allowed to run rampant, it has the potential to damage building materials, structural components, HVAC systems, and personal property. Undetected or unaddressed, mold can eat away and break down organic matter, including walls, insulation, carpeting, and more, causing costly repairs or replacements. When you hire an Allentown mold removal company at the first sign of trouble, you can protect your property and belongings from damage.

Prevent the problem from worsening

Professional mold removal in Allentown stops mold in its tracks. It’s the only safe way to prevent pesky mold from growing and spreading enough to produce harmful health consequences or property damage. While it may seem easy to put off, mold removal is a home and commercial property maintenance task you can’t afford to ignore.

Professional mold removal vs. do-it-yourself (DIY) removal

When deciding whether to call in professional help from an Allentown mold removal company, first determine whether you have mildew or mold using these simple steps:

  1. Drip several drops of household bleach onto the affected surface
  2. Wait five minutes
  3. Inspect the spot

If the area appears LIGHTER, you likely have MILDEW. If the area remains DARK, you may have MOLD.

Most people can safely remove mildew on their own without any special equipment. Simply clean it with a commercial mildew cleaner, bleach, or vinegar and a scrub brush.

If you think you have mold, it’s best to leave mold removal to the professionals to ensure it’s completed safely and effectively. Look for an Allentown mold removal company with indoor air quality experts on staff to help you follow the 3 P’s and ensure you and your property are safe.

To learn more about Allentown mold removal, visit our website, or call (610) 890-6300.

What to Look for in an Easton Mold Remediation Company

Mold remediation is a tricky process. There are endless variables and factors at play that can dramatically affect the safety of your family, building occupants, and property. Mold is known to pose health risks and costly damage when left untreated. Finding an Easton mold remediation company at the top of its game is essential for a mold-free outcome that protects everyone.

While it goes without saying that any Easton mold remediation company you choose should satisfy essential criteria, like being fully insured and highly rated and reviewed, what are some other criteria that factor into a sound decision? In this post, we’re highlighting some of the basic and not-so-basic, advanced considerations that could make or break your Easton mold remediation experience.

Basic criteria for choosing an Easton mold remediation company

First, let’s start with the basic set of standards when you’re searching for an Easton mold remediation company. The following list contains the absolute must-haves to ensure the company you choose is reputable, safe, and competent.

Look for an Easton mold remediation company that:

· Is fully insured
· Is highly rated and reviewed
· Offers affordable rates
· Has decades of experience
· Has earned nationally recognized counsel-certified indoor environmentalist (CIE) and counsel-certified microbial consultant (CME) certifications
· Has certified indoor air quality association (IAQA) mold experts on staff
· Provides a warranty upon completions, like our two-year, no-mold guarantee

Advanced criteria for choosing an Easton mold remediation company

Now, let’s up the ante with additional considerations to help you select the best Easton mold remediation company for your job. This set of criteria will weed out the mediocre performers from the crème of the crop.

Look for an Easton mold remediation company that satisfies all the basic criteria listed above, plus:

· Can accurately interpret and explain mold testing findings in understandable terms
· Uses an evidence-based approach to Easton mold remediation
· Has specialized equipment, including HEPA vacuums and air scrubbers
· Removes not only the mold you can see but also its source
· Has experience removing many mold varieties, including toxic black mold
· Is equipped with tool and gear specifically designed for hazardous mold removal
· Diligently uses protective strategies to protect your property from contamination or damage
· Demonstrates an understanding of mold growth cycles and knows how to remove spores at every stage
· Has capabilities that extend beyond mold remediation should you need them, such as duct cleaning or building materials restoration
· Provides personalized advice to prevent regrowth on your property

When you want the job done right, look for an Easton mold remediation company that ticks all the boxes on both the basic and advanced criteria lists. Doing so just might make the difference between potentially dangerous mold that reemerges with a vengeance and mold that doesn’t stand a chance.

Choose our Easton mold remediation company for the ultimate long-lasting protection against the recurrence of mold. To learn more about us or schedule service, visit our website, or call (610) 890-6300.

How Can I Tell if There’s Mold in My Ducts?

Air ducts play a critical role in your home’s HVAC system, and keeping them in optimal working conditions means proper ventilation and a consistent supply of air in and out of the living space. Mold in air vents is one of the main challenges facing homeowners, especially those in moist and warm areas. Humid and warm temperatures coupled with poor ventilation favor mold growth. Similarly, anything that traps moisture inside the ductwork and causes condensation can also expedite this mold growth. To prevent mold infestations, you need to understand the factors that favor its growth then find ways to eliminate them. Here are some of the possible causes of mold problems in your air conditioning unit and the subsequent air ducts.

 

Causes of Mold Infestation in Your HVAC System

Mold is a fungus, which occurs as tiny organisms, taking any color from orange, black, green, white to purple. Molds live anywhere where the conditions are favorable – either indoors or outdoors. They thrive on moisture and organic matter and reproduce via lightweight spores, which travel through the air.

When warm moist air passes a cold surface such as uninsulated duct work for instance in an attic or a crawl space, water droplets form within the ductwork; however, water droplets then build up instead of evaporating if there’s high water-vapor content outside. This creates a conducive environment for mold growth particularly if the duct work is contaminated with dust or dirt. To grow and reproduce, mold feeds on dust, dirt, pollen, dead skin cells, animal dander, and water, which collects inside the air duct.

Signs of Mold in Your Home

Before you can remove mold growth in your home, you need to spot the signs of mold infestation. Below are some of the signs to look out for in your HVAC system:

  • A strong, musty smell covering your entire house or a few adjacent rooms
  • There is mold growth around the air ducts and intake vents
  • You are experiencing some random headaches that set in when you are inside the house and go away when you are outside.

Some people are sensitive to mold, and the odor alone will make them sneeze or develop nasal congestion. Similarly, being in contact with the mold spores could trigger allergic reactions such as skin rash, watery eyes, running nose, asthma, chest tightness, etc.

Depending on the infestation level, you may not notice any of the above signs, but the mold is right inside the air ducts. The fungus can spread rapidly, and you need the proper treatment to get rid of the mold colonies entirely and effectively.

For minor mold problems, you can use some DIY solutions. A common option is to mix cleaning solutions such as household detergents with baking soda and water. If you are to buy a commercial mold removal remedy, you want to look for one that’s EPA registered to make sure you aren’t polluting your indoor space.

Throughout the cleaning process, you should turn off the heating or cooling vents so you can comfortably and safely clean mold off the infested HVAC parts. Rinse up these areas and dispose of the cleaning materials in an airtight trash bag. After a thorough cleaning, use a mold growth inhibitor to avoid mold resurgence inside the air ducts.

When to Seek Help

If the infestation level is severe, it’s best to consult a professional mold removal company, which will first conduct a thorough property inspection to ascertain that no other parts in your home suffer from mold infestation. Additionally, black mold infestation is easier to spot due to its distinct green to black appearance; however, the other mold species may escape your naked eyes, hence the need for specialized mold testing.

At times, the source of mold in your air ducts can be difficult to spot. The drains and drip pans are often damp and dark and may sometimes clog, creating the perfect conditions for mold to grow. With mold testing and remediation, you are leaving nothing to chance.

This is because the experts will quickly tell the level of infestation as well as suggest the best remediation strategy that will successfully remove mold from the heavily infested and hard-to-reach areas within your HVAC system.

Final Thoughts

Now that you know how to remove mold from air conditioner ducts using the DIY method and when to seek professional help, you stand a better chance of handling mold infestation than the average homeowner. Keeping your home tidy and spotless is easy, but ensuring optimal air quality can be challenging.

Warmth, high humidity levels, and water buildup make it easy for mold to grow and multiply throughout your home. The HVAC system, in particular, meets all these conditions, making it a potential breeding ground for fungus of all types.

Spotting mold infestation is easy in severe cases. All you need to do is check for strange musty odor, allergic reactions, and visible mold colonies around vents and registers. Your indoor air professional can take air samples under a specified set of conditions and have them analyzed for the number and types of mold species.  Typically, indoor air samples are compared with outdoor air samples and the numbers can generally tell the source of the mold problem.  Either way, working with experts in indoor air quality will make the entire mold testing, air duct cleaning, and mold remediation process easier and more convenient.