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Do-It-Yourself Mold Removal: How Effective Is It?

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Most people who try to remove mold themselves use chlorine bleach, vinegar, or similar disinfectants to get rid of household mold. However, these chemicals are not always adequate mold-remover tools and appear to work only on the surface. Bleach is made up primarily of water, so it can actually help mold thrive. Additionally, these household products typically will not penetrate into wood to fungal rot and do not address the issue of spores that may have aerosolized (become airborne) in your home. When used incorrectly, they can produce toxic fumes that can make you sick and, in some cases, can be deadly because mixing some chemicals produces a lethal toxin.

Ever notice that, when you use a popular mold-removal disinfectant in your bathroom, you have to keep cleaning the same mold spot off the bathtub tile every week? That’s because all bleach does is remove the discoloration mold produces. It does not remove the microscopic plant that will return and grow in the same place. Professional mold-remediation services like us use industry-specific antimicrobials formulated to destroy the mold at its many growth phases and not just “bleach” the discoloration of the mold.

Did you know that you can’t always see mold? When you can, there is usually more of it hiding behind wallpaper and paneling, on the backsides of carpet and carpet padding, in the HVAC system, on top of ceiling panels, and in drywall. A common misconception is that you can smell mold. Sometimes you can, but not always. Another common misconception is that once you find and repair the water problem that created the humid, moist habitat in which mold thrives and then clean up the mold, the problem is solved. Not necessarily. In fact, most likely, you have uncovered only the tip of the iceberg. Mold releases spores that travel through the air in your home and find all kinds of new, nicely hidden places to grow.

So, let’s say you’ve had a water problem and notice visible mold and decide to tackle the job yourself. You get out your wet vac and rent some equipment from Home Depot to dry out the area. Most wet vacs are not built to handle heavy extraction, and you will burn out the motor. Secondly, in addition to other types of secondary damages you may cause, you risk contaminating the wet vac, which will require detailed cleaning to prevent contaminating other areas later.

If you decide to dig around for hidden mold on your own, guess what? When you rip down that wall paper or remove those ceiling tiles, you inadvertently release a plethora of mold spores. And, chances are, you were not wearing the right protective gear when you released those spores and slathered bleach all over the infected area, and now you can add medical bills, lost wages, and a growing mold problem to the mounting cost of that bargain-basement do-it-yourself remedy.

As soon as you suspect mold, do what the EPA recommends: call a professional mold-remediating service like us. Our professionals are trained to follow the protocols required and use the appropriate antimicrobials and equipment to remove mold without cross-contaminating the rest of your home’s environment, to remove existing mold spores, to find and remove hidden mold, and to safely clean or remove damaged building material. There simply is no substitute for professionals trained in mold remediation, who use specialized, expensive equipment, effective and safe chemicals, and innovative techniques to extract water and permanently remove mold and mold spores. Flood & Fire Restoration Inc. has the training, equipment, and expertise to restore your home to a clean and safe environment.

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