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Top 5 FAQs About Mold
Black mold might be a common residential issue, but that doesn't mean you still shouldn't take it seriously.
Five Most Common Mold Questions
Black mold and other types of residential fungi are extremely common issues that many homeowners must face at some point. Even so, many homeowners know very little about resolving a mold issue. If your home in Loveland, CO, is suffering from a mold problem, consider studying the following frequently asked questions regarding mold.
1. What Causes Mold Growth?
Mold thrives in dark, damp environments and is most likely the result of a moisture problem in your home.
2. Where Does Mold Usually Grow?
Any area in your home that comes into frequent contact with water is likely to experience mold growth. This includes your bathroom, kitchen, laundry room, basement and garage.
3. Does Mold Go Away By Itself?
Black mold is a living organism, so it's natural to assume that it could die off on its own if deprived of its vital nutrients. Unfortunately, this isn't the case. Depriving mold of moisture and nutrients may temporarily prevent it from spreading, but it will not make it go away.
4. Are There Any Effective Home Remedies?
Contacting professionals is always the recommended course of action, but you might be able to resolve small issues using DIY mold cleanup methods. An equal parts mixture of white vinegar and water is usually effective in cleaning surface mold.
5. How Can You Prevent Mold?
Keeping your home as clean and dry as possible is the best way to prevent unwanted mold growth. This involves cleaning and drying any spills immediately after they occur, properly ventilating your bathroom while showering or bathing and carefully monitoring indoor humidity levels. Performing routine mold inspections can also help you stay on top of any potential issues.
Black mold might be a common residential issue, but that doesn't mean you still shouldn't take it seriously. If you discover any mold growth during your next routine mold inspection, you need to contact mold remediation experts at SERVPRO as soon as possible.
3 Ways To Prevent Mold Growth
A small timeframe of 24-48 hours Is all mold needs to be going to grow.
3 Ways To Prevent Mold Growth
If your commercial building in Loveland, CO, has experienced any kind of flood or water damage, your building is susceptible to mold. This is because mold thrives in moisture, coming from excess water in your building or high humidity. It is especially likely to grow on building materials or porous surfaces like carpets. Thankfully, there are some mold prevention tactics you can use to limit the growth of mold in your facility.
1. Mitigate Damages As Soon As Possible
If you have a plumbing issue, leak, or flood, it's important to mitigate damages and get rid of any excess water. If your commercial building experiences a pipe burst or natural disaster, call in professionals to help you mitigate damages quickly. In the meantime, if possible, try to stop the source of water and get rid of any standing water. Mitigating damages is the easiest way to prevent mold, as mold can grow as quickly as within 24 to 48 hours.
2. Get Rid of Any Excess Moisture
Whether from excess water or high humidity, moisture is one of the easiest ways to acquire mold. The most important mold prevention measure is getting rid of any excess moisture, which will stop mold before it begins to grow. A restoration company can pump out any standing water. They may bring air movers or fans to promote drying, but you can also rent these from an equipment rental company. Be sure to get porous surfaces like carpets or rugs professionally dry cleaned. If your problem is related to humidity, use a dehumidifier, and keep humidity levels under 60%.
3. Start With the Right Materials
Many materials, such as plant fibers, can increase your chances of mold growth. If you are in an area that is high risk for mold, consider using building materials that are mold-resistant.
Mold prevention can help stop mold before it begins to grow. However, if your commercial building does have mold, call in a mold restoration company to help you mitigate damages.
What It Takes To Become a Preferred Vendor for Insurance
Highly-trained specialists arrive Faster to Any Size Disaster.
When disaster strikes, you have a number of trusted people and companies you can depend upon for help. Your insurance agent is one person who will provide you with information and assistance in a time of need. The agent will inform you on what your coverages are for fire, storm, water, and other types of damage to your commercial building in Loveland, CO. One way to make things easier for you is to choose a professional restoration company that works closely with your insurance company. This saves you the hassle of having to coordinate paperwork and claims between the two entities.
The Preferred Vendor Program
It is not surprising that your insurance company prefers working with certain remediation franchises. This makes things easier on everyone, and also is likely to result in fast and accurate claim payments. An insurance agent looks for a company that has the following characteristics:
Your agent knows that a SERVPRO franchise has all of the above. Highly-trained specialists arrive Faster to Any Size disaster and they work quickly and safely. These experts have the capability to limit damages and expenses through their actions. Whether the disaster is large or small, a crew will arrive at your facility to improve the situation.
The Importance of High Standards
Working with a company that has extensive performance guidelines benefits you and your insurance company. These include such best practices as background checks for employees and work certifications. Restoration workers also follow validation from industry organizations in such areas as proper equipment utilization and cleanup techniques. Finally, the company will record and track the entire process of restoring your company to its original state.
All of this makes things easy for your insurance agent. A Claims Information Center is devoted to keeping track of all aspects of a job. This results in a complete and comprehensive restoration as well as a seamless claims process.
SERVPRO: Helping Your Clients Rebuild
Storm damage in Loveland, CO.
SERVPRO: Assisting Your Customers in Rebuilding
If you have clients in the Loveland, CO, area who are dealing with storm or flood damage, a storm restoration specialist can help, especially one as qualified as SERVPRO. Many of your clients may require restoration services following a disaster, and it is important to deal with a company that delivers not only quick response times but also corporate assistance with the claims process. However, response time and claims assistance are only a fraction of the services provided.
Fundamental storm response must include mitigation practices to ensure that your client’s claim is not hung up on a technicality. Through board up, fencing and tarping services, your client’s property is protected from worsening existing damage as well as trespassers, animals and weather, ensuring a successful claim.
Before storm restoration and loss assessments can begin, it is necessary to clean out the home, ensuring that all damage is visible and known. It is not enough to remove excess water from flooding; debris must be removed and separated into actual rubbish and damaged insured items so that loss can be documented properly.
Once proof of loss has been documented and all assessments and estimates approved, then it is time to move forward with the restoration work. This work may be extensive, requiring demolition and reconstruction, but in the end, your clients can return to their repaired home.
4. Claims Information Center
Beyond the services offered to your client, it is essential that you have access to the progress of the work and the claim. For you to understand fully the work being proposed, you can access the Claims Information Center and review similar claims as well as the progress on your own.
Storm restoration is a necessary solution to the misfortune severe weather can bring, and while it is your job as an insurance agent to help your clients rebuild through funding, it is the job of restoration companies, like SERVPRO, to restore the physical structure and help make the claims process as speedy as possible.
The Types Of Equipment Used by Mold Remediation Specialists
Mold remediation in Loveland, CO.
Types of Safety Gear For Mold Remediation
Handling a small case of mildew or mold in your Loveland, CO, home might not seem like much of a reason to cover up in full-fledged protective gear. However, for the professionals in the business of mold damage and remediation, protective equipment is entirely essential. Here are some of the more common types of safety gear worn by specialists in the field, including everything from face masks to durable shoes.
Coming into direct contact with mold or mildew can be hazardous, making a reliably safeguarded pair of gloves a necessity for mold cleanup. These gloves can be made from a variety of materials, such as:
- Polyvinylchloride (PVC)
- Natural rubber
The type of gloves chosen should depend on the type of mold involved and the extent of the damage, though any pair should extend upwards from the hand along the forearm for maximum coverage.
Fully-Equipped Respirator Masks
There’s nothing more important than covering the face when dealing with mold, as airborne spores can be inhaled or absorbed quite easily. Face masks can range anywhere from minimal coverage using simple sealed goggles and a common N-95 respirator, to full-face respirators with strong HEPA filters for advanced protection.
Extreme mold removal jobs generally require clothing that can be easily disposed of afterwards. Trained mold remediation technicians often go for full body suits and shoes made of protective yet breathable materials, sealing areas around the ankles and wrists for added measure. Respirator face masks and other durable head and foot coverings finish off the look for the ultimate protective shield against contact with mold.
The use of such intense precautionary gear goes to show just how harmful the effects of contact with mold can be. For this reason, it’s imperative that any mildew or mold found in your Loveland, CO, home is handled and removed by professionals with protective equipment that’s suited for the task.
3 Pointers on Evicting Mold From a Rental Home
Mold infestation in Loveland, CO.
Mold Prevention Pointers
Getting a handle on mold growth can become tedious, no matter what type of building you own. When that location involves a rental home, however, matters can become difficult and time-sensitive. You should take note of the following mold prevention pointers to keep the fungus at bay and to keep stress away for everyone involved.
1. Turn off Water
Exposure to the elements on any level can be a harsh hit for a home. Since moisture is the definition of mold’s favorite hangout spot, make sure to maintain awareness of where, exactly, water damage is occurring in your rental property. If you discover a leak in the home, turn off water to the appliance until it can receive attention from a trusted professional who knows the ins and outs of mold prevention.
2. Turn Down the Heat
To the surprise of many property owners, avoiding excess heat in a home can affect mold’s ability to thrive indoors. For example, an abrupt temperature change caused by turning the heat on during the winter can open the doors for mold growth, and turning on heat frequently can allow for mold to grow inside walls.
3. Keep Heat on If Possible
Of course, temperature setting preferences can differ from household to household. However, keeping a steady air flow can promote circulation, especially in areas of the house such as attics, where air could be easily trapped. One piece of information to keep in your back pocket is that wherever there is poor ventilation, there could be a higher possibility for mold.
Even though it is a crucial part of our ecosystem, most property owners in Loveland, CO, would likely agree that mold has no business indoors. It may be a nuisance, can become a challenge to tackle and might frustrate renters, but a mold prevention professional can help wipe out potential problems.
3 Benefits of Media Blasting for Mold Control Under Your Home
Mold damage causes a lot of damage.
Protect Your Home Against Mold
Protecting your Loveland, CO, home against a mold infestation after flooding can prevent frustrating and costly problems that may appear later. Mold can grow almost anywhere in spaces affected by moisture, but one that might be especially problematic is your home’s crawlspace. If fungi thrive there, they may damage your home’s plumbing or enter the heating, ventilation and cooling system. Media blasting can be an effective solution for eliminating mold under your home, and there are a few benefits you might want to know about the process before hiring a mold cleanup and restoration company to perform the job.
1. Blasting Can Reach Tight Spaces
Unlike traditional methods of mold removal, the tools and materials that are used in media blasting, such as dry ice and sodium bicarbonate, can reach tight spaces your techs might encounter while working under your home. The nozzle that releases the media and removes mold with high-pressure abrasion may be able to reach corners and into crevices where spores may be spreading, which lowers the risk of future infestation.
2. Remediation May Be More Effective
One important factor in mold damage remediation is controlling the spread of spores during the removal process. If the existing fungi are not contained, spores may be released and find other moist areas in your home, where they can thrive anew. Media blasting with dry ice pellets freezes the mold and allows techs to remove larger patches while reducing the risk of further contamination.
3. Blasting Can Protect Sensitive Systems
If your crawlspace contains much of the wiring and plumbing lines of your home, media blasting with sodium bicarbonate can protect these systems in a way that traditional mold removal techniques might not. The pH of the crystals that are used for blasting away mold is almost neutral, which means a lower risk of damage to delicate wiring and other systems during the cleaning process.
Your Loveland, CO, home’s crawlspace can be vulnerable to mold growth after a flood. Media blasting can remove harmful fungi and has a variety of beneficial features that can make mitigation and cleanup simpler and more effective.
How To Know If You Have Mold Coverage
In general, damage to your personal items is your responsibility, while damage to the building falls under the property owner's tasks.
If you rent your home in Fort Collins, CO, sometimes the lines between the damages to the property owner's insurance and the problems your own rental insurance covers get blurred. When it comes to mold damage, the responsibility for remediation services can be determined by answering a few key questions.
1. Did you know about it? Insurance companies expect their policyholders to be observant and responsible. If you know about a mold problem and you let it get out of hand, the insurance company is probably not going to cover the cost of mold removal. If, on the other hand, there is no way you could know that the damage exists, the expenses are likely to be covered by either the owner's property policy or your rental insurance.
2. Did you do something about it? The next step after knowledge is action. If you know there is a problem, and you do not report it or do anything to fix it, you are going to have a hard time convincing your insurance company that you deserve compensation for the repairs. If, however, you reported the problem as soon as you discovered it, your agent is more likely to be willing to work with you to see if you can get money to pay for remediation.
3. Does your policy specifically mention mold? Most renters' insurance policies typically cover only the policyholder's belongings. The mold on the wall caused by high humidity, therefore, probably falls under your landlord's responsibility and thus his or her insurance. If the property owner doesn't fix the problem, however, you may be at a disadvantage. This is a time when it's good to have a specific mold clause in your policy to cover you in circumstances where the property owner refuses to do so.
In general, damage to your personal items is your responsibility, while damage to the building falls under the property owner's tasks. It's important to know what is and is not covered by your policy.
Mold Versus Mildew: How To Tell the Difference
Mold and mildew are two types of fungi commonly found in homes.
Mold and mildew are both types of potentially destructive fungi that are commonly found in homes. While they share many similarities, there are also some important distinctions. One of the most important differences to understand as a homeowner in Loveland, CO, is how to eradicate each type of fungus if it begins to grow excessively in your home. Mildew and mold damage require different removal procedures. Identifying which you have in your home is the first step to getting rid of the problem.
What Is Mildew?
One reason for the many similarities between mold and mildew, as well as a possible explanation for why the two are frequently confused, is that mildew is actually a type of mold. Mildew exhibits a flat growth pattern that spreads across the surface of its food source. Mildew growth is most often found on:
- Fabrics and textiles
- Organic materials
- Moist or damp surfaces
- Houseplants, including leaves and soil
Mildew typically appears as flat, white or gray spots or splotches, though it can become yellow, brown, or black as it grows and matures. It may look fluffy or powdery. Mildew remains on surfaces instead of penetrating them. Unlike mold damage, it can be easily removed using a scrub brush and household mildew remover.
What Is Mold?
While all mildew is technically mold, all mold is certainly not mildew. Most non-mildew types of mold appear as irregularly shaped blotches that may be black, gray, yellow, green, blue, or white. Mold growth often appears to be fuzzy or sometimes slimy. Unlike mildew, most types of mold penetrate the surface of their food source. Mold that penetrates drywall, wood, or other parts of your home can cause whatever it grows on to rot and become unstable.
While mildew is simple to clean up, it is nearly impossible to completely remove mold on your own. In most cases, you will need to contact a professional mold remediation company to fully eliminate mold damage.
3 Reasons To Employ Professional Restoration Services
Commercial water restoration services in Loveland, CO.
3 Reasons To Employ Professional Restoration Services
When natural disasters like tornadoes, hurricanes, floods and wildfires sweep through Loveland, CO, they leave destruction and even devastation behind. The services of a professional cleanup and restoration company are often necessary. A fast response is vital in the aftermath of a storm or other weather/nature incident. It is important for insurance providers to keep the contact information for such experts like preferred vendors 24 hours, always open SERVPRO closes at hand. There are many reasons for this.
1. Speed Mitigates Consequences
Regardless of what caused the damage, in many cases the more time that passes, the worse it gets. Examples of this include:
- Mold can begin growing after 48 hours of water damage
- The longer smoky items sit without being cleaned, the more the smell will set in and the less likely it is they can be salvaged
- Prolonged exposure to water can warp and crack the wood and cause a similar negative impact to other materials
The longer it takes to begin the cleanup and restoration process, the greater the chances of something becoming irreparable. A 24-hour available company can respond quickly enough to make a big difference in how much can be saved.
2. Hazards Abound
There are often dangers associated with remediation. Gray water and black water carry microbes, diseases and harmful substances. Standing water and proximity to living electronics combine to create a hazardous situation. Professionals are trained and equipped to operate in such environments.
3. Experts Do Quality Work
Companies like SERVPRO employ qualified individuals who know what they're doing. They have the training and experience needed to identify, assess and address the damage. They are also aware of the best methods for procedures like drying.
Using 24-hour restoration companies also helps speed up the claims process and reduce costs. They can accurately evaluate the extent of the harm done and the most urgent tasks. They can then provide insurance agents with lists of needed repairs. Such professionals greatly ease the recovery process.
The SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile
A healthy ERP also plans for initial steps and long-term strategy
The SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile
AN OLD ADAGE
There’s an old adage that says, “why do today what I can put off ’til tomorrow?” File that one in your folder, Words on Procrastination.
But there is a good answer to that old adage: important tasks demand action because the consequences of inaction can be detrimental, greater complexity and difficulty.
Action creates ease.
In the spirit of action I want to help you think about a SERVPRO Emergency Readiness Plan, also known as an ERP. An ERP falls into the category of “being proactive.” It’s something a business and institution can do to prepare for future difficult moments, think storm damage, fire damage, or water damage. An ERP helps property owners and managers think in advance what their course of action will be, who can authorize work, the identification of shut-off valve locations and other priority areas and much more — in other words, a readiness plan for emergencies.
Your ERP will lay the framework for action items, who to call and healthy expectations.
PLAN FOR DISASTER
Disasters disrupt businesses and threaten to level and close otherwise healthy operations.
Here are two stats that are staggering:
- Nearly 40% of small businesses fail to reopen after natural disasters.
- 75% of small businesses do not have a readiness plan in place.
Since a large portion of stores that close due to emergencies cannot reopen, and since disasters always strike without warning, businesses and institutions need ERP’s in place. With an ERP your business is protected, you create greater trust amongst employees and customers, the potential for business interruption is minimized and secondary damage is limited.
Some businesses and institutions do have ERP’s, but they’re limited and often not comprehensive at all. A healthy ERP plans for both traumatic natural events (acts of God) and more run-of-the-mill emergencies, whether human error or aging infrastructure. A healthy ERP also plans for initial steps and long-term strategy: first, how to we minimize damage, second, who do we call?, what is a path forward?
Find more information for the SERVPRO Emergency Readiness Plan at https://www.SERVPROloveland.com/.
Detect Mold Early To Prevent Extensive Damage
Mold growth is a serious concern for homeowners of every type
Mold growth may be affecting your home without your even realizing it. The longer it takes to remove a fungal invasion, the more damage it may cause. Early detection is an important aspect of damage mitigation. Find destructive spores before they create greater heartache.
Where Mold Grows
Besides typical spots such as air vents and piping, mold appears in unexpected places, including:
- Inside your toothbrush holder
- Within filing cabinets
- On drip pans and dishes
- Underneath floor mats
Examine these areas to verify that they remain clear. When infestations go unrecognized, they have the opportunity to spread and create deep structural issues, such as moldy drywall. Should a situation like this one develop at your home in Loveland, CO, reach out to a mold renovation specialist to eradicate the mold growth and conduct repairs.
What Prevents Mold
Mold thrives off of organic materials. Any accumulation of dirt is vulnerable, so wipe down outside trouble spots like windows and gutters. Because dust is organic, wayward particles deliver nourishment to mold. Therefore, keep your home as sterile as possible. Hire a cleaning service if you lack the time or energy to thoroughly execute the task.
Even in spotless homes, mold is able to flourish. Typically 10 microns in size, fungus surfaces anywhere oxygen, warmth, and darkness exist, so make sure to inspect these areas. Basements, bathrooms, and crawlspaces are ideal locations for such conditions.
Lower floors often include wooden support beams adjacent to appliances that use water. Mold on wood is often the result. In addition to unsightly discoloration, mold is able to eat through certain synthetics, including adhesives and paints, adding further to the aesthetic degradation and instability. Use mold-resistant materials whenever you can.
Because heat rises, mold beginning on lower floors tends to advance upward in a phenomenon known as the Stack Effect. Even minor infestations are able to yield massive colonies in two weeks or less. Before this occurs, thoroughly investigate your home’s lower levels.
Mold growth is a serious concern for homeowners of every type. Regularly inspect your house, as prompt identification has the potential to prevent a minor problem from becoming enormous.