Blog Articles About Mold Remediation


Can You Paint Over Mold?

Is It a Good Idea to Paint Over Mold?

Image of Don't just paint over mold - Mold Solutions NWIf you have mold growing on your walls, don’t be tempted to “just paint over it” hoping that will get rid of the problem for you…it won’t. What seems like a good idea is really an effort in futility.

Although there are paints designed to inhibit mold or mildew growth, they are not designed to stop it once it has begun.

Mold must be killed, you can’t just cover it because before you know it, it will resurface right through that new coat of paint, cause it to peel and continue to grow and destroy.

Mold Survival

Like all living organisms, mold survival depends on moisture and food, and the food it focuses on is your home. Finding organic materials in your home, such as wood, fabrics, insulation or wallboard, it begins the process of decomposition, which is what it does best.

When mold is outside, it’s decomposing characteristics can be very beneficial, but when it has the opportunity to reside in your home, it can be very destructive as it weakens your home’s structure or destroys furnishings.

Other Dangers

Mold is not only dangerous to your home, but can also create health risks as its tiny spores circulate through the air and are inhaled, which can be especially bad for the elderly, the very young or people who already have respiratory problems. Some of the problems it can cause or increase are:

  • Problems breathing
  • Dizziness
  • Asthma
  • Headaches
  • Symptoms that resemble the flu
  • Even learning disabilities

Controlling Mold Growth

You can’t get rid of all the organic materials in your home, but you can control the moisture that encourages mold to begin in the first place.

  • Image of Good ventilation helps prevent mold growth - Mold Solutions NWOpen windows as often as possible to increase good airflow in your home.
  • Repair leaks of all kinds – it only takes about 24-48 hours for mold to begin growing, the sooner you repair your leaks the better.
  • If you have had water damage of any kind, especially to carpets, fabrics or upholstery, be sure to to not only get them dried and cleaned as soon as possible – don’t forget the short period of time it takes mold to start.
  • Check your attic and crawl space to make sure they are well ventilated and have good airflow.
  • Always use exhaust fans in your kitchen, laundry room and bathrooms to vent excess moisture outside.

For your peace of mind and the safety of your health and home, 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 area, Bellevue, Everett, or Tacoma

 


How Do I Know if I Have Mold in Seattle?

What are signs of mold in your house?

Image of Frightened about the thought of having mold - Mold Solutions NWBecause they understand the health risks, thinking they might have mold in their home can be a frightening thing to many people. It would seem the solution is relatively easy, just get rid of it – problem solved. Unfortunately, that is easier said than done.

First of all, discovering the presence of mold in your home isn’t as easy as you might think.

Yes, there are times when you can see it, but maybe even more often, there are times when it’s hiding, lurking in places you can’t or seldom look at like back in the dark corners of an under sink cabinet, or in the padding of your carpet or even in your drywall.

Mold is called a Filamentous fungus and is considered a parasite.

Mold can grow anywhere it has a food source (any organic materials), moisture or high humidity, and a little time (if conditions are just right, it doesn’t take much time at all for mold to begin growing).

What are the signs of unseen mold?

Mold smells…mold is considered a microbial volatile organic compound that releases gas while it’s growing which is where its odor comes from. When it is growing in enclosed spaces or in high concentration, the odor is much more noticeable.

If everytime you enter your home or a certain room in your house, you get a whiff of “musty”, chances are good that you have mold.

Keep in mind that in addition to the fact the smell develops slowly over a period of time, because you live in your home and you’re there a great deal of time, you could get used to the odor and not recognize it’s presence.

Health issues are another good indicator that you have mold.

Mold can make you sick…Although mold exposure doesn’t have the same effect on everyone, for some, it doesn’t take a great deal of exposure to cause health problems, especially for infants, the elderly and people who have respiratory or autoimmune disorders.

Some of the symptoms might be:

  • Image of Mold can cause health issues - Mold Solutions NWBurning, watery or reddened eyes
  • Nasal or throat irritations
  • Sinus congestion
  • Coughing, sneezing, difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
  • Chronic headaches

The difficulty using these symptoms as mold indicators is that they are so similar to cold and flu symptoms. If these symptoms persist and don’t go away it’s evidently not a cold.

If you have any indication of mold in your home, give us a call, don’t put your health at risk.

Mold Solutions is a full service mold solutions provider for the Seattle Puget Sound area, Bellevue, Everett, or Tacoma
We can remove the threats to your health and safety caused by mold.

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What’s the Best Way to Fight Mold in Seattle?

How do you Fight Mold?

Image of How Can You Fight Mold? - Mold Solutions NWObviously the best way to fight mold is to prevent it from ever getting started in the first place. But that is sometimes easier said than done.

We can’t run and we can’t hide, mold spores are not only insidious, but they are everywhere and always with us.

During the winter months, especially in the Seattle area, mold can become a real problem as furnaces are turned on, doors and windows are closed and humidity levels increase. These are indoor conditions that encourage mold growth.

Are we safe during the summer?

That being said, you might think that during the summer months mold would die, but that isn’t the case. During the summer months we experience hot humid days; these are outdoor conditions that encourage mold growth.

Whether in the winter or the summer, excess humidity in our homes is mold’s best friend. It has been estimated by George Tsongas, a Portland State University professor emeritus, that nearly 1/3 of the homes in the Pacific NW have mold or mildew problems.

One out of 3 homes is an extremely high number, and unfortunately, most of those homeowners don’t even realize they have mold. Once you have it, it doesn’t go away on its own. It will probably be necessary to contact a mold inspector and professional remediator.

If you don’t have mold, or you have had remediation, to keep mold from beginning or coming back, it is absolutely imperative to control the moisture in your home.

An instrument called an hygrometer can check the humidity levels, which should be kept below 50%, although most of us are more comfortable when they are lower than that.

Suggestions to lower humidity

  • Always use exhaust fans in your kitchens and bathrooms.
    • Image of House Plants create humidity - Mold Solutions NWThese fans should vent to the outside.
  • If your home has naturally high humidity, you could purchase a dehumidifier.
  • Keep in mind that too many house plants can cause higher humidity as they give off moisture.
    • Just remember how humid it felt the last time you were in a greenhouse.
  • Never store firewood in your house; as it dries it gives off moisture.
  • Leaky faucets should be repaired.

If you think you have a mold problem, don’t wait, give us a call…

Mold Solutions is a full service mold solutions provider for the Seattle Puget Sound area, Bellevue, Everett, or Tacoma
We can remove the threats to your health and safety caused by mold.

 


What are Spores

What is a Mold Spore?

Image of Spores are part of mold's reproductive process - Mold Solutions NWAs a living organism, mold needs a way to reproduce. That is where spores some in.

Spores are the reproduction method for fungus and algae. Since mold is a fungus, its means of reproduction is through spores, which are asexual, and don’t need to combine with anything else in order to reproduce.

Spores are much like seeds, but are much quicker and have a higher reproduction rate.

How do spores travel?

Traveling through the air, mold spores are always with us, inside and outside. If they were able to stay outside, they wouldn’t be a problem, but they enter our homes everytime we open a window or a door.

Then, once they are inside, their movement and ability to spread is assisted by our activities that cause air movement, such as cleaning and vacuuming. It’s kind of frustrating to think that some of the things we do to eliminate these problems are the very things that help spread them.

Signs of a mold problem

Mold is not only unsightly, but it can be unhealthy and cause or increase respiratory problems. Although we don’t need to be paranoid about watching for mold, we do need to be aware of any signs of mold growth:

  • Your nose might be the first to notice that musty smell of mold. Though you may not be able to see the mold, you may be able to smell it.
  • Have you discovered a leak? Leaks are one of the largest contributors to mold problems. Mold begins fast, it only takes about 24-48 hours for water damaged surfaces to start showing signs of growth.
  • Image of  Black Mold growing on a wall - Mold Solutions NWVisible signs of mold isn’t always consistent, it could look black, brown or even orange, and it could be fuzzy or slimy.

It’s recommended that if you have spotted mold growing in your home and it is in an area of about 10 sq feet or more, you should probably have a trained professional come out and assess the damage and risk.

Not all mold is toxic, but unless you have been trained, you won’t know the difference, don’t take a chance with yours our your family’s health.

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

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


Is There a Difference Between Mold and Mildew?

Mold vs Mildew Difference

Image of Questions about mold and mildew - Mold Solutions NWMany people use the terms mold and mildew synonymously, substituting one for the other, which causes confusion, because we wonder if they are the same or if there is a difference.

They are the same, but they are different…does that clear things up?

Like so many things in life, they have various similarities and various differences.

Let’s talk about the similarities between Mold and Mildew

  • Both are types of fungus and spread by spore movement
  • Both can be found growing in damp warm areas
  • Both produce allergens and can be toxic and cause health problems
  • Both can be found growing on a variety of surfaces
  • Both move and spread easily and freely
  • Both are always with us…they’re everywhere
  • Both give off a musty smell

What are the differences?

  • They are different in color
    • Mold is found in a variety of colors, from black to green to orange and even blue
    • Mildew is normally gray or white and can change color as it matures
  • They are different in appearance or texture
    • Mold is often thicker, it can be slimy or fuzzy
    • Mildew is either powdery or downy
  • Mildew can be spread by animals or even be transported on your clothing or shoes
  • Some molds serve a purpose, they can be used in the production of penicillin or cheese
    • There aren’t any good uses for mildew
  • Mildew is more predominantly found on fabrics, paper and showers
    • Mold is more typically found in walls, on ceilings and on food, in attics and crawl spaces
    • Moldy food should never be eaten

Whatever their similarities or differences, it is unhealthy for you to have them growing in Image of Trash moldy food - Mold Solutions NWyour home or any place where you spend several hours a day.

If you have mold on your food, throw it away.

Most people don’t have the knowledge or resources to remediate mold safely and permanently, so if you have mold growing on your walls or ceilings call a professional to assess the damage and eliminate the problem.

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

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