The Dangers of Black Mold

Black mold tends to grow in damp, dark and humid places where moisture accumulates. Black mold can grow in both indoor and outdoor environments. Despite its name, black mold isn’t entirely black, but could also have a dark greenish hue. It develops a dark coloring when it’s mature. The infestation of black mold can be costly as well as dangerous because of the spores produced by the mold, especially for individuals with allergies or whose immune system is compromised. Black mold could become deadly if left to grow unrestrained. Take a look at some of the specific dangers of black mold.

What is Black Mold?

Black mold is a fungus and the most common species is Stachybotrys chartarum, known to produce mycotoxin. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), stachybotrys chartarum can grow on material with a high cellulose and low nitrogen content, including fiberboard, gypsum board, paper, dust and lint. The cause of the mold growth can be related to water damage, leaky pipes, condensation from an air conditioning system, excessive humidity or flooding.

Dangers Black Mold Pose

  • Travel Indoors: The last thing you want is for black mold to take up residence in your home, but sadly it can happen. The spores of black mold, which are the real danger, can migrate indoors from outside through open windows, doors, heating, air conditioning unit and ventilation. Spores can also attach themselves to pets, clothing and even people that carry the mold indoors. Once transferred in, the mold takes root in moist areas of your home, where it flourishes and later cause structural damage to the house.
  • Trigger Allergies: Black mold can cause an allergic reaction in individuals who are sensitive to the fungus. Exposure to black mold can cause an allergic reaction, with symptoms that can include stuffy nose, stomach pain, cough, diarrhea, wheezing, red or itchy eyes, or skin rashes. It may also trigger severe reactions such as fever and shortness of breath.
  • Development of Asthma: Asthma in children, in particular, has been linked to mold growing in the home, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH). If a disturbed mold source in the home release spores into the air, then any occupant in the home, adults or children inhales or ingests, it could result in an allergic response like asthma. Asthma can cause problems with breathing and chest pain.
  • Opportunistic Infections: Black mold can cause specific health problems in people with a weakened immune system and not affect healthy people. Individuals receiving cancer treatment, organ or stem cell transplant patients, and people taking certain immune system-suppressant medicines are more susceptible to contracting mold-related infections.

Contact Moldguys Restoration 

If you find that black mold has begun to grow in your house, contact MoldGuys Restoration. We’ll get the job done right the first time with our highly trained mold remediation experts and professional service.

 

Preventing Mold in Your Attic

Unless you have a finished, functional attic, most people hardly ever venture up to this space in their home. You may go months at a time without visiting your attic, simply because you have no reason to. However, when you do finally make your way up the stairs to the dark, dingy place that is mostly used for storage, you may find an unpleasant surprise: Mold. With a wet, warm climate, your attic is an inviting place for mold to grow. It may not seem like a huge concern since you’re almost never up there, but don’t underestimate its ability to spread and damage some of your old treasured belongings that cannot be replaced. Taking action and doing routine inspections of your attic can prevent a mold problem from growing out of control.

Roof Issues

If you have a leaky roof, or have in the past, this is a common trigger for mold growth in the attic. Because it is not making an appearance or causing a problem anywhere else in your home, it could be months before a homeowner even notices the damage that has been done. To prevent mold from spreading all over your old pictures and valuables in the attic, perform regular inspection to detect roof leaks early, before it causes further damage.

Improper Ventilation

Although sealing off any vents during the winter to help lower your heating bill may seem like a good idea, you actually need sufficient ventilation to keep your attic cool in the winter time. Without ventilation, the warm air will get trapped in the attic with no place to escape. Because mold thrives in warm places, this is recipe for disaster. Check your soffits to make sure that they are not blocked with insulation, cutting off proper air ventilation.

Water Heaters and Furnaces

Many homes have their water heaters and furnaces installed in the attic. While this solution isn’t quite as simple as picking it up and moving it to a new location, you’ll want to have a professional look at it to make sure it is properly installed and there are no leaks. Routine inspections are a must if your water heaters and furnaces are in the attic, as any sort of moisture is mold’s best friend.

Ice Damming

If water is not being properly drained from your roof, it can freeze and leak into your home through the attic. Gutters should be cleaned at least twice per year to ensure they are working properly. Well-maintained gutters will prevent ice damming and the potential mold growth that could come as a result.

Contact Moldguys Restoration 

If you have come across the unfortunate sight of mold in your home, you’ll want to contact a professional immediately to address the situation. Contact the experts at Moldguys Restoration for quality service today!

Preventing Mold Growth

Finding mold in your home is never pleasant. Between its unsightly appearance, and the potential health hazards it can cause for you and your family, the word itself is probably enough to make you cringe. And sadly, mold has the ability to grow almost anywhere- on the carpet, floor, ceiling, paper, food, inside drywall, etc. Once it has made itself comfortable, it won’t be long before it starts multiplying. That is one of the reasons mold can be so intimidating- it spreads rapidly, and can be tricky to get rid of. The best thing we can do is to try to prevent the growth of mold altogether. The following tips can help to keep you and your home safe from mold.

  1. Keep It Dry:

    It may seem obvious, but this is one of the most crucial factors in keeping your home mold-free. When spills or leaks occur, try to tackle them right away, or at very least within 24-48 hours. After every shower, dry the floors and walls, as this is an optimal time for mold to start growing.  If there’s been any burst pipes or flooding in your home, you may even need to completely remove water-damaged carpets bedding and furniture if they cannot be dried. Additionally, don’t leave wet clothes in the washing machine for an extended period of time. Mold can spread quickly, so try to remove them promptly and when possible, hang outside to dry.  Mold thrives in damp areas, so try to eliminate any potential areas for it could root and spread.

  2. Ventilation:

    Without proper ventilation, some of our everyday domestic activities could be promoting mold growth in your home. Cooking dinner, taking a shower, or doing a load of laundry could be sending an unwanted invitation to mold. You can offset this by using AC units and dehumidifiers in your home to reduce moisture. Opening a window or running an exhaust fan could also work just as well.

  3. Mold-resistant products:

    If you’re starting fresh by building a brand new home, or even renovating an old one, consider using mold-resistant products. Mold-resistant drywall is a good alternative to traditional drywall, as it is paperless. Instead, it is covered in fiberglass, making the service water resistant. This would be highly beneficial to use in rooms that typically acquire the most moisture such as your bathroom, kitchen, laundry room and basement.

Contact Mold Guys Restoration

If you have found that mold has already made its way into your home, contact a professional. Mold Guys Restoration specializes in mold cleanup and remediation. Contact us today to learn more!

 

How to Help Prevent Water Damage in Your Home

While most home insurance policies cover water damage claims up to a specifically purchased limit, it’s easier to avoid the claims process entirely and do what you can to prevent water damage in the first place. Take a look at a few surefire suggestions for preventing water damage, read on!

Clean Your Gutters

Grab a ladder and check out your gutters the next time you have some a free afternoon on a nice day. If you see a lot of debris like leaves and sticks, there’s a good chance your gutters aren’t doing the job you installed them for. On rainy days, clogged gutters can send water coursing through your roof, basement, or home’s foundation, and cause some serious damage. Ensuring your gutters are clean is an easy way to prevent water damage being inflicted upon your home. If your home gutters are situated too high up on your home and you don’t feel safe inspecting them, contact a professional and have them take a look.

Avoid Unclogging Chemicals

Clogs can strike no matter how on top of being clean you are. Your first reaction is probably to head to the store, grab a chemical unclogging agent, and utilize it in unclogging your drain. However, those caustic chemicals can eat away at your pipes and cause problems for your plumbing system down the line. A good solution to this is using a drain snake to clear any clogs you may encounter. Not only are they inexpensive, but they can solve most clogs without ruining your pipes or giving you a reaction.

Avoid Pouring Grease Down Your Pipes

This is an easy one, but it does bear repeating. Please do not pour grease down your kitchen sink, regardless of if you follow up with a flush of hot or cold water. Grease will still congeal and cling to your pipes, which causes both blockage and damage. The best thing you can do with grease is keep it in a container and either let it sit or put it in the refrigerator. Once it hardens, you can easily toss it in the trash.

These are just a few easy ways you can prevent water damage to your home. If you’re currently struggling with water damage and would like the problem addressed, please contact the professionals here at Moldguys Restoration. You can reach us at 781-910-5029 or by filling out an online contact form.   

3 Signs Your Home May Have Water Damage

Much like mold, water damage can remain hidden for quite some time before making itself known. Sometimes, the problem can remain hidden for so long that the signs only present themselves once complete havoc has been wrought. However, there are some telltale warning signs to keep an eye out for when trying to spot water damage in your home or business. Read on!

Cupping Wood Floors

If the subfloor beneath your hardwood planks becomes wet, the planks will begin to cup and warp due to the moisture. If your home has a slab foundation, enough moisture can be sucked up by the foundation to completely destroy your nice wooden floors. This is a major warning sign, so if you spot your floors cupping you should speedily contact a professional water damage repair company. That way, they can address the problem before it gets much worse. If you catch the problem too late, you stand the chance of having to completely replace your hardwood floors.

Bubbling and/or Peeling Paint

If your plumbing pipes are situated close to your walls, peeling or bubbling paint can be a common warning sign of there being a leak present. If you notice the paint on your walls acting strangely, get in touch with the professionals. They can visit your home and utilize equipment to confirm if there is a leak or moisture problem behind your walls.

Increased Utility Bill

If you’ve noticed a steady increase in your water bill, you may have a leak on your hands. The thing about plumbing system leaks is that they can be tricky to spot and therefore remain undetected. If you’re not often venturing into your crawl spaces to take a look in between your walls, keep an eye on your water bill! A high water bill can be a clear indicator there is a leak present somewhere within your home.

No one wants to deal with water damage in their home or business. It can be expensive to get everything back on track and most people would like to avoid that kind of situation. If you recognize any of these signs in your home, get in touch with us here at Moldguys Restoration! You can reach us at 781-910-5029 or by filling out an online contact form.

3 Facts Everyone Should Know About Mold

When we talk about the dangers of mold, it can sometimes be hard to convey just how troublesome this growth is. Small amounts here and there in your bathroom that are swiftly dealt with aren’t going to pose a huge risk to your health. If you let it sit, however, and don’t address the problem, or experience a large flood and don’t properly clean the affected area afterward, you’re risking greater exposure to toxic mold. To further hit the ball home, let’s go over some things you really should know when it comes to this fungus.

1.) Mold Only Needs Between 24 & 48 Hours to Grow

In order for mold to grow, three things are required. First, it needs food. Good food for mold includes cardboard, wallpaper, leather, fabric, grout, painted walls, cement, ceiling tiles, insulation materials, and carpet. Next, an ideal temperature is necessary. For the most rapid growth, mold enjoys temps ranging from 41 degrees to 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Last but not least, the key ingredient to proper mold growth is moisture. If moisture is present in combination with perfect temperature range and food, mold can grow very quickly.

2.) Mold Reduces Home Value

If mold is left unchecked, it will continue to grow as long as food, moisture, and temperatures remain adequate. The only true way to defeat mold is by tackling the moisture source and subsequently removing the materials contaminated with mold spores. Failing to adequately address the underlying causes of your mold problem will ultimately decrease your property value due to structural damage as mold will continue to plague the home.

3.) Most Folks Don’t Even Know the Mold Is There

The fickle thing about mold is that there can be so much of it, but it can have a real knack for remaining hidden for a good long while. It can be detected through smell and visual hints, or by knowing the flood history of the structure. One of the main indicators homeowners should be on the lookout for is a musty odor. It’s a huge indication you have a problem on your hands and should prompt you to identify the source of the problem. Some common areas to start looking include sink leaks in bathrooms and the kitchen, behind appliances, ceilings, and walls where water has leaked, window sills where condensation can accumulate, your basement, closets, and any crawl spaces.

Mold can be a pesky inconvenience or a full-blown problem. It’s important to understand just how troublesome it can be in order to act on the problem quickly as opposed to letting it linger. If you suspect you’re having mold trouble, check out your home in the locations listed about and see if you can spot a problem. Just because you don’t see anything, though, doesn’t mean nothing is there. If you have no luck with your visual search but still suspect there is an issue, contact us at Moldguys. You can reach us at either 781-910-5029 or 781-733-3675, or you can choose to fill out our online contact form.

Tips for Beating Mold and Mildew Before They Start

Mold pops up seemingly out of nowhere. Under the right conditions, it can begin growing in as little as 24 to 48 hours. You won’t have a full-scale problem on your hands right away, but wait long enough and you’ll be wishing you had been a bit more proactive on keeping mold at bay in the first place. Luckily for you, we have some suggestions on how to get the jump on mildew and mold before they ensnare your home in their clutches.

Increase Air Circulation While Reducing Humidity

One of the cheapest ways to do this is simply opening your windows or turning on a fan or two. Although, opening up the windows is likely not an option now that the cold weather has arrived. If you have a bathroom window, however, there is no harm in throwing it open when you take your morning shower in order to prevent moisture from building up in the bathroom. In times of cold weather, consider purchasing a dehumidifier to help reduce overall moisture inside of your living space. If you can, purchase one with digital readings so you can actively keep indoor humidity below 40%.

Quickly Repair Any Leaks

Since mold and mildew grow at a relatively rapid pace, attend to any leaks your home may have. The longer a leak is left unrepaired, the more likely you are to be dealing with the fallout of the mold and damage that comes along with an unattended leak. Fixing the leak as soon as you notice it will only save you time and money in the long run.

Keep Entryway Floors Dry During Wet Weather

While it’s not great to have wall-to-wall carpet, or sections of carpet, in your entryway, you might not have a choice if you’re currently renting your property. If you have carpet up to your door, be sure to vacuum the area regularly when the weather is wet. Regularly inspect carpeted entryways for signs of mold by the baseboards or wherever the carpet meets the wall.

These are a few ways you can help mitigate mold growth in your home. Try them out and you should notice an improvement in areas where you have noticed light to moderate mold activity. If you appear to have a larger problem on your hands than you thought, don’t hesitate to contact us at 781-910-5029 or 781-733-3675. You can also fill out our online contact form!   

Understanding the Mold Removal Process

Discovering extensive mildew or fungus growth within your home or business can be pretty disheartening, not to mention stressful. After all, mold can pose some serious risks to your health if left ignored, in addition to decreasing the overall value of your property. If you’re trying to sell your home but have been battling persistent mold growth, making the sale is likely going to be quite difficult. Mold can give your home a noxious odor that can require significant deodorization, which is another factor that definitely isn’t playing in your favor. With all of these negatives, it’s a wonder people allow mold growth to get out of hand in the first place. But, it happens all the time and that’s why the professionals have to be called in. Let’s take a deeper look into the removal process…

Step One: Mold Testing

While you might think the only testing required for mold growth is spotting it, that is not the case. Just because you see it does not mean testing is not required. Also, what you might not know is that when you test for mold, experts can determine where all areas of mold growth are located throughout the structure. They can also pinpoint what kind of mold is being dealt with. Testing ensures all areas are targeted when moving forward with the remediation process.

Step Two: Mold Removal

Next, the areas impacted by mold must be contained. Spores from the mold can float around in the air once dislodged, which can then lead to new areas of mold growth depending where the spores settle. To keep this from occurring, air vents and other entry points are completely sealed off. The removal team will then kill the mold in its place before moving forward with removing the surfaces with growth on them. The mold has been officially dealt with once the crew has removed all contaminated materials from the building. The deodorization process then takes place due to the pungent musty odor left behind.

Step Three: Restoration

Since some parts of your home or business will have to be taken out during the mold removal process, restoration work must be performed. Your hired professional crew will go through and replace all missing materials using only quality supplies. Some mold removal companies do not offer restoration services, so you may potentially have to hire a third party for this part of the process.     

 

Mold is quite common, so don’t feel ashamed if your home or business is stricken with a major growth issue. The moment you spot signs of a serious problem, get in touch with Mold Guys Restoration. We’ll get rid of the mold fast and get you back on track. Call us at 781-910-5029, or fill out an online contact form!

4 Strategies to Help Prevent Basement Mold

Mold is a common problem in basements, especially those that are dark and damp. Mold itself is a fungus that grows quickly in humid, moist conditions. The problem is that once mold establishes itself in your basement, it is incredibly hard to get rid of. The presence of mold causes a slew of health problems that include asthma, congestions, infections, allergies, and rashes to name a few. So, we’re here to provide you with some pointers on how to prevent mold in your basement.

1.) Monitor Humidity Levels

A basement with high levels of humidity provides the perfect environment for mold to grow. To help mitigate this, you have to ensure the humidity levels in your home are within acceptable levels. To determine the humidity level of your home, use a hygrometer. If the humidity level reads 45% or more, your basement is highly conducive to mold growth.

2.) Ensure that Water is Directed Away from Your Home

The boundary surrounding your home has to be sloped in a way so that when snow and rain fall, their runoff is directed away from the house. If your boundary is not sloped, moisture can begin to pool around your home which leads to increased moisture and leaking problems. In scenarios like these, mold growth is practically inevitable.

3.) De-clutter Your Basement

Having too many objects in storage in your basement can block air flow and reduce ventilation. Also, keep in mind that stored clothing and books are food for mold and mildew. Everyone’s basement is formatted differently, so try your best to store books and clothing in a place where they don’t have direct contact with the walls or floor.

4.) Use a Dehumidifier

If you have high moisture levels in your basement, it’s in your best interest to purchase a quality dehumidifier. Not only will it help alleviate your initial problem, but it will continuously keep humidity levels in check throughout your basement.

5.) Remove Humidifying Factors

Word to the wise, be sure all of your basement appliances, like your dryer for example, exhaust outside of your basement. If all of the dryer air is venting into the basement, humidity levels can rise very quickly. Try to steer away from carpet and wood floorings within your basement too. If one of these floor types is in your basement, do your best to replace them.

These are just a few of the methods you can employ when fighting basement mold. Do your research and see what works best for your situation. If your basement mold problem has gotten entirely out of hand, Moldguys is here to help! Call us at 781-910-5029, or fill out our online contact form!

Why Air Duct Cleanings Are Important

Keeping the air ducts in your home clean is fairly important. After all, those air ducts keep air circulating throughout your home, and bring air from both the heating and cooling systems for consistent interior comfort all year round. Since the air in your home circulates through the ducts multiple times a day, and is the air that you and your family breathe on a regular basis, you’ll certainly want that air to be as clean as possible. We’re here to explain the benefits of regular, professional duct cleanings, and how your home will benefit from them.

1.) Reduces Allergens and Irritants

Aside from dust, there are frequently other harmful contaminants and organisms that take up residence in your air ducts. These range anywhere from pet dander, pollen, mold spores, mildew, or other toxins. If you or any of your family members suffer from respiratory issues such as asthma or allergies, you’ll definitely want to look into having professionals clear all the micro junk out of your air ducts. By doing so you’ll make your home a much healthier environment, and breathe easy knowing your ducts aren’t repeatedly circulating dirty air.

2.) Gets Rid of Smells and Odors

All sorts of things can contribute to a stale smelling home, including food preparation, household cleaning products, mold, tobacco use, etc. As air flows through your ducts, those smells are consistently distributed around your home. If it’s been years since you’ve had your ducts professionally cleaned, there is a chance the build-up of dust and dirt are the reason for the musty scent emitting from your air ducts. All the odor trapping particles are cleared out when you opt for a professional cleaning, which results in a much better smelling home.

3.) Improved Air Flow

Ducts with heavy build-up of dust and grime can restrict the flow of air coming from the air conditioner or furnace. This decreases efficiency because your system must then work harder to either heat or cool your home. After getting your air ducts professionally cleaned, your system will be operating a peak efficiency. You’ll likely see a decrease in your monthly heating or cooling bill too! 

As the season slowly begins to change, you should consider scheduling an air duct cleaning, especially if you’re a bit fuzzy on when the last one was. We suggest getting your ducts cleaned at least every two years, so try and use this as a base for yourself going forward. If you’re in need of an air duct clean out, look no further than Moldguys Restoration! Call us at 781-910-5029, or fill out our online contact form today!