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wall mold

Mold on walls – drywall or plaster

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While drywall is porous, plaster is not.

This means that mold will grow on the drywall, and often times on both sides since it is an organic porous material; in fact the rich carbon paper back that holds the gypsum together is the preferred food source for Stachybotrys to grow and decompose given enough moisture.

If you have visible mold on the exterior of the drywall, is almost certain a larger amount of mold growth is present in the back of the drywall.

There are no products that can guarantee the successful cleaning of mold on the drywall due to the porosity of the material. Often times, it must be cut off and removed.

Mold on plaster walls on the other hand are cleanable since it is not a food source, and not porous. The mold is usually feeding on your paint and dust. However plaster walls can contain paper backing and if moisture penetrates the back of the plaster, the walls will need to be removed.

You must always consult with a mold remediation specialist to ensure you can determine the extent of the contamination.

Call us for a free inspection at 416-791-8020.

 

 

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ceiling mold

I have mold in the ceiling – what should I do?

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Mold in the ceiling are caused by:

  • Liquid moisture
  • Airborne moisture

Liquid moisture examples are a flood, water pipe burst, exterior failure of building components, roof leaks or anything directly associated with water penetration inside building components. In these cases often the interior of the drywall or plaster will have a much higher amount of mold than the visible exterior components.

Examples of Airborne moisture is when humidity on the interior is above 60%, and as air evaporation tries to escape through poor insulated ceilings, condensation is created by the extreme differences of temperatures. Often this results in the interior corners of the ceilings creating mold on the surface of the components.

A professional inspection can determine the cause and provide a solution and plan to remove the mold in the ceiling.

Call us for a free inspection at 416-791-8020.

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attic mold

I found mold in the attic – what should I do?

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Attic mold is caused by excessive moisture; there are many factors that can cause moisture inside of an attic.

  • Lack of ventilation
  • Improper connection of bathroom exhaust vents
  • Attic bypasses
  • Roof leaks

All attics come in different sizes, roof peaks and layouts. Mold growth can also vary in size and deterioration. It’s very important to find and correct the cause of mold in the attic. You will need a trough inspection by a qualified professional to determine the exact cause or causes and generate a plan in how to correct it permanently.

Is it safe to live inside the house since I have found attic mold?

The attic is usually NOT part of the living space unless is finished, so the answer is YES. There is no cross contamination of spores to other areas unless disturbed or spread by workers or anyone working in the attic.

What’s the cost of attic mold removal?

It really depends on the size of the mold contamination and the work that is needed to correct the moisture issue that caused the deficiency. Most attic mold removal work starts at a cost of $500 and up depending on items already mentioned above.

If you think you have attic mold,  call us for a free inspection at 416-791-8020.

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mold on carpet

I found mold in my carpet – what should I do?

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Most carpets manufactured today are made of nylon fibers (polypropylene).

Polypropylene is a type of thermoplastic polymer resin (plastic), and therefore a non organic and not a food source for mold or bacteria to decompose. We use the same material in many other household products like, food containers, toys, microwaves, etc.

Mold on the carpet is usually on the dust accumulation on top of the carpet or in the backing of where glue is binding the fibers together and can be a organic source of food.

Typically if water damage to the carpet is attended rapidly and comes from a clean water source, and not sewage or other grey waters, the carpet can be salvageable and only the under pad needs to be removed and replaced.

We recommend consulting with a carpet cleaner to ensure it can be disinfected on both sides of carpet. You can also use benefect to remove mold in your carpet: http://www.benefect.com/US/mold.php

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I found mold on my wood floors – what should I do?

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wood floor mold

Wood floors require large amounts of moisture present for several days before mold can grow. After small water damage most people attempt to dry the wood floor and assume all is well; however after a few days discoloration or visible mold will appear and grow on the edges of the flooring.

Mold on wood floors is always worse than what you can see visually. Wood floors retain moisture underneath between flooring, underlay and substrate creating large amounts of humidity and fungal growth. The longer it is undetected, the larger the mold growth on the wood floor.

Do not attempt to remove the mold on the flooring yourself before consulting with a professional. We can detect the extent with simple moisture readings or thermal imaging.

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mold on concrete

I found mold on the concrete of my basement – what should I do?

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Here’s the good news – Mold does not decompose concrete, so in this type of situation black mold is growing on the dust in the concrete. Efflorescence is more likely the culprit. Efflorescence simply stated, is when concrete inside a foundation gets excessive moisture, minerals and calcium deposits form a white powdery substance as it dries (sometimes confused for mold). Mold can and will decompose the minerals and salts and the added dust and humidity will activate further mold growth.

If large amounts are found do call a mold remediation contractor to ensure you do not spread the spores or contaminate other areas while attempting to remove the mold.

However small amounts of mold in the concrete can be removed by you by using a concrete cleaner.

If you’re unsure if it’s efflorescence (white fuzzy powder), see the following image:efflorescence

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Mold on insulation

I found mold on my insulation – What should I do?

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Unless you have paper backed, or wool insulation, mould does not decompose fiberglass insulation.

Most often mould is found on the dust in the insulation, sometimes like the picture above the dark areas are dust caused by thermal bridging (air infiltration) and not mold.

It’s always safe to discard the insulation to prevent the dust to develop fungal growth if moisture develops.

Tip: If the darkness looks fuzzy, slimy or smears when pressed, it is mold and you SHOULD discard it. Large amounts of mold in the insulation require professional remediation and should not be removed without proper precautions to ensure safety

If that sounds like you, call us for a free inspection at 416-791-8020.

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Mold on Drywall

I found mold in the basement – what should I do?

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If you find mold that is less than 10 Sq. Ft, on your basement drywall, this can typically be remedied by yourself without having to call a remediation company. However, it is always best at minimum to consult with a mold specialist, because like the picture above shows, sometimes the small amount of mold visible on the exterior of the drywall is much larger on the inside of the drywall. Without experience and the proper equipment, you cannot make the right decisions on how to proceed.

Example: the amount of mold found in the above image located in the customers’ basement was the initial complaint.

As you can see, the amount of mold found in the basement was much larger (see image below). In fact in this case it extended to the perimeter of entire basement and the moisture was traveling for a long period of time eluding the owners. So always call a mould remediation company to ensure safety.

 

What not to do:

  • Attempt to clean the mold in the drywall by using bleach or vinegar; not only you are feeding the problem but mold will return stronger.
  • Paint over the mold, same reasons as above
  • Not doing anything will compound the problem and allow the mold in the drywall to multiply.
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Grout mold

I found mold in the bathroom – what should I do?

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Mold found on tiles or grout in the bathroom often indicate a more serious mold contamination issue behind the visible area. If the mold is on the caulking, then read this article. If you’re not sure of the difference between grout and caulk, grout is used to fill in the spaces between tiles, whereas caulk is used on the edge of the tiles perpendicular to the tub/floor

Porous grout, missing grout and damaged tiles are all contributors to moisture penetration to the drywall behind. Often large amounts of mold are found behind the drywall and can pose a serious health hazard by attempting to do with yourself without proper equipment and precautions.

Mold found on the ceilings or walls of the bathroom indicate excessive moisture most often due to the lack of ventilation and the rise of interior humidity.

It is always best to contact a mold remediation professional to inspect and test moisture readings and thermal imaging for a proper assessment. Call us for a free inspection at 416-791-8020.

As this is a more serious issue as compared to finding mold on the window or along the caulking, here are things to be mindful of when mold is on the grout:

  • Attempt to remove the mold without using proper precautions. This will not only make it a possible health hazard, but you can easily spread the spores to other areas.
  • Continue to clean the mold making the underline problem worse and more expensive

As always, NOT doing anything will usually lead to increased mold growth and make the issue worse.

If in doubt, call us for a free inspection at 416-791-8020.

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Mold Shower

I found mold in the shower caulking – what should I do?

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I found mold in the shower/bathtub caulking – what should I do?

If mold is visible on the caulking in the shower or bath tub, then that immediately tells us that the wrong type of caulking was used.

Caulking is for baseboards and interior doors – not for bathrooms or kitchens where moisture is present.

Bathrooms and showers will always have moisture due to their nature, and therefore require 100% silicone to be used instead of caulking. Silicone is not organic and therefore is not a food source for mold. Caulking on the other hand is a food source for mold.

Silicone is mold and mildew proof and most manufacturers guarantee it. Here is one product we recommend.

So what is the solution?

We recommend removing the caulking and replacing it with silicone. This is a relatively simple process and we do not recommend hiring a mold removal company to do this. In fact, here is a simple step-by-step guide that will show you how to do this:

What you should not do

  • Paint over it- giving more moisture and food for mold to grow
  • Bleach it- does not kill embedded mold just discolours the surface of it
  • Use vinegar- does not kill just discolour it
  • Not do anything- this is the worst option of them all! Mold will continue to grow and possibly spread to other areas of the bathroom.
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