Blog Articles About Mold


Is Mold Common in New Homes in Seattle? Could Your Home Have Mold?

Is There Mold in your New Seattle Home?

Mold on Joists - Mold Solutions NWUnfortunately, the answer to that question is yes, you could have mold in your brand new house.

Most people think they are safe from mold because their home is new, but the fact of the matter is, mold can move into your house before you do.

It can begin to grow in the lumberyard and become part of your construction.

Lumberyard Mold

Mold appears on new lumber as dark, fluffy areas and is becoming quite an issue in the construction industry as people recognize the dangers of mold to their health.

Lumberyard Mold - Mold Solutions NWTrees that have been around for a while consist of two types of wood:

  1. Sapwood – This is the first wood formed in a tree. Its job is to move and store water and nutrients which travels from the roots to the leaves.
  2. Heartwood – Named because of it’s position in the center of the tree, it is denser wood and forms after several years of growth as new sapwood forms around it. Due to the fact that the sapwood does all the work, heartwood is basically dead.

It is the sapwood that is at risk for mold growth. As the wood is harvested and milled into lumber, moisture and sugars from the sapwood become exposed and available to air-borne mold spores to take hold and begin growing.

Controlling Moisture in the Wood

Because all mold needs moisture in order to thrive, controlling the amount of moisture in the wood is the key to controlling mold, which is why it’s important to keep the lumber as dry as possible.

Mold on New Construction - Mold Solutions NWIf you are in the process of building a new house…

  • Communicate with your builder and request that all lumber and wood products will be inspected before leaving the lumberyard.
  • Check your construction site frequently to make sure that the wood is stored off the ground and protected from moisture.
  • Make sure your new construction is checked for mold.

If you are already in your new home and you think you have mold…

Call us for a FREE mold assessment, we also inspect new construction and can warranty for 25 years!

Mold Solutions NW is a full service mold solutions provider for the Seattle Puget Sound area, Bellevue, Everett, and Tacoma.


Is Breathing Mold Dangerous? Read This If You See Any Mold

How Harmful is Breathing Mold?

Mold Decays Leaves - Mold Solutions NWFall is fast approaching, which means leaves are falling and decaying, and people are having allergy and asthma attacks.

The decay is caused by mold doing it’s job, feeding off the organic plant matter and turning it into organic compost.

When this natural cycle occurs outside people with allergies can become very uncomfortable, but when mold is growing and feeding off the organic materials in your house, it is not only uncomfortable, but can become dangerous.

About Mold:

Mold is not like typical plants that produce their food by means of photosynthesis, mold is a fungus that must find its food to survive, and it will find it in dark, moist, warm places…that’s where fallen leaves, over ripe fruit and your water damaged wallboard comes in.

As mold finds its food source, the process of decay and destruction begins.

How Mold Grows

Your home can be the perfect environment for mold to grow, like you it likes nice warm places with moist air. And like you, it will thrive when conditions are just right.

As mold grows, it spreads by sending out tiny seed like spores that travel through the air looking for the same conditions. This process happens rapidly, in fact if you have had water damage and haven’t thoroughly dried out everything that got wet, mold will begin in about 24 hours.

Some molds produce mycotoxins, which are dangerous to human beings, and are all but impossible to destroy. If we have mold in our homes, when we breath the air, we are also breathing in the mold spores and possibly dangerous mycotoxins.

Possible Health Problems Related to Mold:

  • Mold Can Cause Health Problems - Mold Solutions NWRespiratory problems – trouble breathing, allergies and asthma
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue
  • Sinusitis
  • Digestive Problems
  • Depression
  • Aching joints

If you’re experiencing poor health symptoms that you can’t explain, you might want to consider the possibility of mold exposure.

We are not intended to coexist with mold in our homes – call us for a FREE mold assessment.

Mold Solutions NW is a full service mold solutions provider for the Seattle Puget Sound area, Bellevue, Everett, and Tacoma.

 


How Long Does It Take for Mold to Grow?

How Long Before Mold Starts Growing?

Image of Mold Grows Fast - Mold SolutionsNWBecause mold is both damaging and dangerous to property and people, it’s important to pay attention to any evidence that it might be growing in your office or home.

Too much water is the culprit:

Water damage comes in many shapes and forms, from flooding to leaks in pipes to too much humidity in the air.

It doesn’t take large amounts of moisture to cause water damage; accumulation of condensation on windows or an undetected drip from an under counter pipe is all that’s necessary.The perfect environment for mold growth has been created.

Mold grows fast

Once water damage has occurred, there is a small window of time, 24-48 hours, before mold will begin to grow, and once it begins it spreads quickly.

As you can see from this brief time lapse video of a 2 week time span, mold grows rapidly once it begins.


How Do Tenants in Seattle Resolve Mold Issues?

What Should You Know About Mold in Apartments?

Image of How do tenants deal with mold issues? - Mold Solutions NWHomeowners and business owners are not the only people who have mold issues. It is not uncommon for a renter or tenant to discover they have mold in their rental home or apartment.

The problem with mold being found in a rental property is determining who is responsible for remediation, which can lead to conflict between landlord and tenant.

If you are a tenant…

Before signing your name on the dotted line of the lease, you always do a walk through to take note of the condition of the dwelling; you look for doors and drawers to work properly, the condition of the flooring and the walls and you check to make sure all appliances are in good working order.

One thing you may not have considered looking for is mold growth, check for:

  • Musty odors and where it seems they are originating from
  • Evidence of water damage, such as stains in the carpets, the walls or ceilings.
  • Discolored laminate on the floors that are near sinks, dishwashers, clothes washers and other plumbing

If mold is found before you sign a contract and move in, the mold cleanup would be the responsibility of the landlord. It would be my recommendation to have it remediated before you move in to avoid any health issues that the mold may cause.

Your responsibility:

Once you have determined that your future home is free from mold, and you have moved in, your responsibility begins.

It’s up to you to:

  • Notify your landlord immediately once you have discovered a water leak.
  • Image of Keep floors vacuumed to reduce mold spores - Mold Solutions NWBecause mold spores are always in the air, keeping your home clean and vacuumed will help remove spores that are waiting for moist humid conditions to begin growing and spreading.
  • Allow fresh air to circulate by opening windows whenever possible.
  • If you have had a leak or water damage, make sure that all organic materials, clothing, bedding or carpets are dried as quickly as possible.
    • Mold begins growing within about 24 hrs, so timing is critical.
  • If you discover mold, contact your landlord right away.

More often than not, a mold inspector or remediator will not be able deal with the tenant, but will need to discuss the problem with the landlord or property owner, which doesn’t mean they are responsible for taking care of the mold – you may need to work together to resolve the issue of responsibility.

If you are a tenant in Washington State, you are covered by the “Residential Landlord-Tenant Act“, which will help you understand your rights and responsibilities.


How to Detect Mold Problems in a New Home or New Construction?

Why Would a New House Have a Mold Problem?

Image of Mold Problems in new construction - Mold Solutions NWYou would think because your home was purchased when it was brand new that you wouldn’t have to deal with mold problems. In fact, for most new home owners, this is probably one of the last things on their mind. Instead, they are focusing on window treatments, landscaping and wall decor because they think they are safe…this is a new home you know!

Incidence of mold occurring in new homes is growing rapidly. In fact, the issue of mold in new construction could become the asbestos or leaded paint issues from previous eras.

Why is this happening?

  • Image of Mold Inspectors locate the problem - Mold Solutions NWMany attribute part of this problem to the fact that there are areas in a newly constructed home that cannot be inspected easily. Such places as:
    • Around the floor joists
    • The area above your crawl space
    • Within the stud cavity

It’s easier to detect mold in living areas than it is in foundational areas.

  • Newer homes are also being build much “tighter” than were the homes of the past, which means there is less air flow, keeping more moisture inside and giving mold fertile territory to begin growing.

Home Construction Mistakes

Another problem that newer homes have is when construction errors occur, and they do, because even the best of us makes mistakes.

There was a show on a Home Improvement Chanel on the other night that featured a young family with 2 young sons, a toddler and an infant, who had recently moved into a new home.

Both children became very ill…stomach aches, coughing, runny noses and even vomiting. Then the parents began experiencing bronchial problems as well.

One day after it had been raining, the mother noticed some water coming in one of the upstairs windows in the baby’s bedroom. Because the walls and the carpets were so wet it occurred to her there might be a mold problem.

Due to the fact the windows didn’t have a good seal and the moisture barrier wasn’t installed correctly, water had consistently been entering the house, and sure enough they had mold, in the carpet and on the wallboard, not just in that room but in several other areas also.

Image of Leaving until the mold is remediated - Mold Solutions NWBecause they didn’t know how widespread the mold was, the family moved out until they could get the mold removed and the house put back together by professionals. Mold had made this entire family very ill.

Don’t assume that because you are in a new home that you couldn’t have mold problems. Remember too that just because you can’t see it doesn’t mean it isn’t there.

For your peace of mind and the safety of yours and your family’s health, if you think you have a mold problem, give us a call, and have it remediated properly.

Mold Solutions is a full service mold solutions provider for the Seattle Puget Sound, Bellevue, Everett, or Tacoma areas