How to Remediate Mold When Found in Your Home
Whether it's in the bathroom, basement, or kitchen, mold in a Salem home requires immediate action. While certain species aren't harmful, others can be literally deadly. Mold may seem similar to mildew, but they require two different strategies to remediate. One can be killed with just help from household cleaners, but the other will take more effort to eradicate from the home. Before assuming anything, it helps to understand how mold forms and what it takes to be rid of it for good.
Testing the Mold
Mold can be dramatic to discover, but there's no reason to panic just yet. Homeowners who catch a small patch before it's had a chance to spread may be able to use standard home removal remedies. But if anyone in the home has been exhibiting cold-like symptoms with no apparent source, such as congestion or coughing, it may be worth having the mold tested.
Taking a sample of the mold and keeping people away from the area should be a priority for all homeowners. One main caveat for a DIY testing kit is that sometimes two species of mold can form in one area. If the test sample shows up as benign, there may still be a harmful species lurking under the surface.
What's Causing the Mold
Mold can stem from any number of water sources:
- Leaky pipes
- Faulty appliances
- Shower heads
- Rain seepage
- Water rising
- Poor ventilation
Mold needs darkness, oxygen, spores, warmth, moisture, and a food source to flourish. Food sources can even be flooring materials—from wood to carpet—which is why mold can be found in any room of the home if the conditions are right. A window that doesn't quite close, a roof shingle that has morphed over time, or a dying water heater can all be the culprits. But even homeowners who find the cause may miss just how deep the problem goes. Because mold has no problems growing straight into the walls and under the floorboards, it can destroy the home from the inside out before long.
Amateur Mold Remediation
Those who want to tackle the mold without the help of a professional need to be exceedingly careful. It's not just the equipment that can set homeowners back, but the dangers too. Without sufficient ventilation, extended exposure can spark any number of diseases in people. If the homeowners notice any upper respiratory issues after removal, they may want to see a doctor to have their health evaluated.
Most experts will recommend hiring a professional to be on the safe side, even though plenty of people have been successful at treating mold on their own. Regardless of how the mold is removed though (either with the help of a professional or amateur), third-party testing is highly recommended. It's not impossible for even the most experienced professionals to miss a part of the colony, making this the best way for homeowners to get total peace of mind.
For the most part, the costs of mold will not be covered by insurance - only if homeowners catch the problem quickly and it's determined the problem was caused by a covered reason, such as a major storm. This is why it's highly recommended for homeowners to do constant home inspections, so they can spot the problems long before they become expensive catastrophes.