Prime Mold Removal encounters many customers that have questions about mold, its effects on their health and how to remove it safely and effectively. To better assist with these questions, we created this FAQ section.
Q: What is mold?
A. Mold is a fungus that can flourish both inside and out. While no one is quite sure how many different kinds of mold exist, some estimates peg the number to be up to three hundred thousand. Damp, humid and warm environments provide the best conditions for mold to grow. It spreads by producing spores. These spores are hardy and can survive adverse conditions, such as being dry, that otherwise wouldn’t support the growth of mold.
Q: What color is mold?
A: Mold can be a number of different colors including brown, greenish, gray, yellow, black and white. In addition, the appearance of mold colonies can be granular, glassy, velvety, leathery or cottony.
Q: Can I use bleach to clean mold?
A: Using bleach to clean mold is not advisable, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Though using bleach kills mold and causes discoloration, dead mold can still have an adverse effect those who are within the space. Scrubbing with soap and water is all that is needed to clean mold from hard surfaces.
Q: Where does mold grow?
A: Because mold needs only moisture and the right kind of materials, it can grow nearly anywhere inside or out. Mold also needs warm and humid conditions in order to thrive.
Q: Is everyone affected by mold in the same way?
A. Of the entire human population, only about 20 percent can be classified as being sensitive to mold. However, it’s important to note that the remaining population can face an increased sensitivity if they are exposed to a high mold concentration for a long period of time.
Some people develop an allergy to mold while asthmatics could become sick after just a small amount of exposure to mold. The reactions of those people exposed to the harmful chemicals released by molds can also differ significantly from one another. This can make it difficult to determine safe levels of mold exposure.
Q: Do I need an inspection or can I go ahead and remove the mold?
A: If you see mold, it’s probably not an isolated incident. Mold contamination is likely to be an issue. Having your home or business inspected by someone trained in mold remediation to address it. During this process, the mold remediation company treats the mold and removes it. Next is a treatment that is designed to prevent the mold from returning.
Q: What types of mold are considered to be “toxic” mold?
A: Some black molds, such as Stachybotrys chartarum, can be particularly harmful to humans. This type of mold must have a great deal of moisture to flourish. It also grows only on those materials that have a low nitrogen and high fiber content. For this reason, it is often found growing on items such as building materials, such as carpet, wallpaper and wood, that have become saturated with water.
Q: How long does it take mold to grow?
A: Mold is a quick-growing fungus with its spores able to germinate in only 12 hours. The growth of mold can begin only 24 to 48 hours if the conditions are right.
Q: What can I do to prevent mold?
Consumers can take several preventative strategies to decrease the chances of mold growing in their home or business. Keeping the humidity level between 40 and 50 percent is ideal. Because it gets so humid in New York City, it’s likely that you’ll need to use either the air conditioner or a dehumidifier in order to achieve this level. Make sure that there is plenty of ventilation throughout the home. Vent your clothes dryer to the outside of your home and use exhaust fans in the kitchen and bathrooms. Fix any leaks in the plumbing, walls or roof promptly so mold has nowhere to grow. Items such as upholstery and carpets that have been saturated with water should be thrown away if they cannot be dried right away.