Blog Articles About Mold Remediation


What does it take for Mold to Grow in Seattle?

How Does Mold Grow in Seattle?

How Does Mold Grow - Mold Solutions NWMany people are amazed when they discover that they have mold growing in their home.

The problem is, they’re not thinking of mold in the right way…they equate it with dirty living conditions. You can have a very clean house, and still have mold. It’s not about the dirt, it’s about mold spores that colonize anywhere there is moisture, oxygen and organic material for them to feed on.

Mold spores are extremely tiny and invisible to the naked eye, but the damage they can do is not. Once mold gets started, it doesn’t take long to take hold and begin the damage.

Damage from mold

If you’re wondering what type of damage mold can cause in your home, ask the victims of Hurricane Katrina and most recently Hurricane Sandy.

The news talks about power outages, shortages of gas, no food, no water, injury and evacuations. What you don’t always hear about is the destructive force of mold.

Once any type of water damage occurs, you only have 24-48 hours before mold begins to grow. If you can repair and stop the damage right away, you probably don’t need to worry. But in natural disasters where homes are evacuated and flooded, it’s unlikely that homeowners will not be able to return soon enough to stop the damage.

For homes (or any other buildings) that were left standing in water after the storms, mold will be their largest enemy. By the time people were able to re-enter their homes after Katrina, mold was growing everywhere and the homes were beyond repair.

But it doesn’t take a hurricane for mold to begin growing, it only takes a leaky pipe, too much condensation or lack of good ventilation.

Tell tale signs of mold

Water Damaged Home - Mold Solutions NWIf your home, office or school has experience any type of water damage, be on the look out for signs such as these:

  • Water stains
  • Musty smell
  • Discolored walls or ceilings
  • Warped floors

Mold doesn’t go away on its own…if your home has had water damage that has encouraged mold growth, don’t try to deal with it yourself, you could actually make matters worse – call trained mold inspectors and remediators. They know how to solve your mold issues safely and without spreading the spores so they can start again.


Toxic Mold

How Severe are the Dangers of Toxic Mold?

Mold Danger - Mold Solutions NWAccording to Dr. Mercola, the dangers of toxic mold can be far more damaging than even pesticides. He also sites statics that suggest that up to 40% of our schools and 25% of our homes have levels of mold that are harmful to people.

In the Seattle, WA area, it’s not surprising that, considering the heavy moisture content in the air, there would be a heavy concentration of homes reporting mold growth. But what is surprising is that even in drier areas of the country, mold is still a problem.

Toxic Mold Health Issues

We have all heard that mold causes such symptoms as sneezing, coughing and increased respiratory issues, but there are more serious possibilities that aren’t talked about as much.

Please watch this brief video of a family that had extreme health problems. Problems you can avoid if you will be on the lookout for signs of mold in your homes, schools or businesses, and when you find it, have it remediated immediately!


Mold and Pregnancy in Seattle – Can Mold Cause Birth Defects or Miscarriage?

How Does Mold Affect Pregnancy?

Pregnancy and Mold - Mold Solutions NWMore and more people are coming to the understanding that exposure to mold can cause many health issues, especially for young children, the elderly and those who already have respiratory problems.

With that in mind, the question now is will mold negatively affect your pregnancy and your unborn child? Are you worried about exposure to mold and pregnancy complications?

Unfortunately, there has not been a great deal of research done on this topic. There has been animal research that has shown there are risks of birth defects if the animals have eaten moldy food, but nothing has been determined about airborne mold exposure.

Is It Just Coincidence?

There have been many women who, during the time of their pregnancies were exposed to mold for extended periods of time, either experienced miscarriage or had a child born with a birth defect. But science has not validated the idea that these situations were caused by or linked to mold exposure.

According to researchers, if a miscarriage happens, it’s most likely not due to external, i.e. environmental factors. Up to 70% of first trimester miscarriages and 20% of second trimester miscarriages occur because of a genetic mistake – an irregularity in the fetus’s own genetic structure, at least according to the March of Dimes.

Can Mold Make You Sick While Pregnant?

Yes, mold has the potential to make you sick regardless of your age, sex, and pre-existing conditions. Prolonged exposure to mold spores is known to cause long-term allergic responses with multiple different places where symptoms can occur: skin, respiratory pathways, lungs, eyes. Anything that obstructs your own intake of oxygen indirectly affects your baby if you’re pregnant.

How does mold affect a baby while you’re pregnant?

There is a 3-5% chance of having a baby with a birth defect in every pregnancy, across the whole population. Studies on mold impact during pregnancy are rare, but animal studies have shown that mold toxins have potential to cause birth defects when ingested. Currently, however, there is no proven risk to a pregnancy from exposure to airborne mold.

Naturally, not much direct research can be done on mold exposure and pregnancy since very few women are willing to risk their own and the health of their child to participate in such studies, and here’s why (quoted from The Lancet):

The thalidomide tragedy in the late 1950s and early 1960s led to the FDA’s expansion of the category of exclusion from that of pregnant women to “women of childbearing potential”. It was not until 1993 that the FDA reversed this policy on grounds that the exclusion of the majority of women from most clinical trials had resulted in a lack of scientific data on the risks and benefits to women of drugs that had been studied exclusively in men.

What we do know…

We do know how mold can affect those of us who have already been born.

  • We know that mold is a fungus and is around us all the time.
  • We know that it’s good for the outside environment, but not for us.
  • We know that it grows by sending out tiny spores into the air we breathe.
  • We know that continuous exposure to these spores can cause health problems:
    • Increased asthma attacks
    • Mold Can Cause Eye Irritations - Mold Solutions NWEye irritations
    • Allergic reactions
    • Coughing
    • Sneezing
    • Wheezing
    • Respiratory problems
  • We know that mold should be removed as soon as possible

Cleaning Mold While Pregnant – Is It Safe?

If you do notice mold growth in your home, our advice is not to clean it yourself. Cleaning disturbs the mold and may release spores into the air, causing health problems and spreading mold throughout the room and beyond. 

Our Conclusion:

It may be a coincidence, but we really don’t know. Even though there is no research that proves mold exposure is harmful to your unborn child, why take chances? We do know that compromised immune systems lead to complications and an increase in various risk factors, so, indirectly mold has the potential to have a plethora of harmful effects. Don’t wait for scientific studies to be over – better safe than sorry!

Mold And Pregnancy – Don’t Risk It, Protect Yourself!

Have the mold remediated by Seattle’s top mold removal experts!

Call us today and schedule an inspection and testing run and we’ll check if you qualify for a FREE inspection.


How does Mold Smell Like? Learn How to Get Rid of Mold Smell

Are You Smelling Mold?

Do you smell mold? - Mold Solutions NWWhat is that foul, musty smell that you notice whenever you enter the house or pass by a certain area? It actually could be caused by a number of things, but more than likely you’re smelling mold.

Sometimes mold is easy to find; you can see it around windows, in the shower, and even growing on your walls. But all too often, mold is growing in places that you won’t easily find.

So don’t think that because you can’t see it, it doesn’t exist, if you smell mold, it’s there somewhere, and it would be wise to have it located and remediated.

Where can mold be hiding?

Mold can hide in various places:

  • One lady complained of a musty smell in her carpet near an outside wall. Because the house was built on a concrete slab rather than having a crawl space, they came to the conclusion that it couldn’t be mold. But if you have foundation problems, such as cracks that allow moisture to creep in, you can have mold.
  • Another unseen mold problem occurred on the back side of some kitchen cabinets that had been exposed to too much moisture.
  • Mold can be found behind wallpaper, behind wall paneling and under carpets and other flooring.
  • It can be found in crawl spaces, attics and in the backs of closets.
  • You can find mold on the bottom sides of drawers that are in kitchens and bathrooms where dampness, spills and leaks occur on a regular basis.
  • Mold can be sandwiched between the sub-floor and floor and concealed in wall cavities.

Locating Mold Growth

Can't See Mold - Mold Solutions NWYou could play hide-n-seek with mold for a long time, and possibly never find where it’s growing. In the meantime, you’re giving it a chance to spread, as well as do damage to your home and your health.

If you are smelling musty, unpleasant odors in your home, and you can’t find the source…a certified mold inspector will be able to locate the problem.

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

We can remove the threats to your health and safety caused by mold.

 

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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.