Mold Remediation – Removal and Cleanup
The recommended and most effective way of addressing wide spread, toxic mold in your home is to employ the professional mold removal and remediation services. On the other hand, small (covering an area less than 10sq.ft.) non-toxic molds can easily be removed through the simple DIY remediation process.
Mold Remediation in Summary
Below is a summary of the basic process of remedying and minimizing mold.
- Put on protective gear
- Have the mold spores under control
- Employ negative pressure
- Take out the mold
- Prevent mold from returning
- Clean your items
- HEPA vacuum
- Get rid of the mold
Put on Protective Gear
Mold remediation will certainly unsettle mold spores, leaving them floating randomly in the air. This is why mold protective gear are vital when remediating mold.
You can at least have the following before beginning a mold remediation process.
- Protective easy-to-clean or easy-to-dispose clothes covering your entire body
- Dust filter mask or respirator
The above represent the basic protective gear one should have. However, the protective equipment to be used depends on how grave the mold problem is and how far it has spread.
Contain the Mold Spores from spreading
Containing widespread mold might mean sealing off the affected room to ensure that no mold spores will spread to the rest of the rooms. This will require clean nylon sheets fixed firmly with a duct tape on all openings such as doors.
It is important to note that as you contain mold spores, you also need to reduce dust. This is because dust particles always travel together with mold spores and this may result in mold spreading to other areas.
Use Negative Pressure
Naturally, air flows from areas with higher pressure to those with lower pressure. By creating negative pressure in the mold-affected room, you will run an exhaust fan and direct the flow of air out of a window.
This way you will create high pressure inside the room and this automatically causes air, mold spores included, to flow out through the window. Make sure your air conditioning is turned off as it may affect the remediation process.
Take Out the Mold
This process usually causes a stir up of mold spores back into the air, especially when the mold is dry. What you can do to prevent this is to dampen the mold by spraying water on it using a spray bottle.
Once this is done, use the recommended solution for your type of surface to take out the mold. Examples of some commonly used solutions are
- Ammonia for hard impermeable surfaces
- Bleach for hard impermeable surfaces like glass and tiles
- Borax for all types of surfaces
- Vinegar also good for spraying on most surfaces
To learn more about cleaning mold read the previous article here –Mold removal guide - Removing mold with common household cleaners
Prevent Mold from Returning
If the mold remediation process is to be rated successful, this stage must not be overlooked. Cleaning all surfaces, both those that had and those that didn’t have mold, with a mold cleaning solution will prevent mold from growing again in future.
Clean Moldy Items and Protective Gear
Cleaning moldy items depends on the material they are made of. Impermeable items are often easier to clean and reuse after being affected by mold because mold does not penetrate them.
On the other hand, permeable items like books and carpet may not be as easy to clean off all mould on them. At this point, you might be forced to make a decision of whether to retain or dispose of them. For some, disposing may be a great idea because it will prevent re-growth of mold in future.
HEPA Vacuuming is the process of clearing any remaining mold spores from the atmosphere. It is an out of the ordinary vacuuming process that clears very fine particles and so is suitable for removing mold spores.
It is recommended that this be done after removing mold, sanitizing all surfaces, and giving them time to dry out all form of liquid.
Dispose of the mold
This is the final step after clean-up, taking-out mold, sanitizing, and HEPA vacuuming has been done. Moldy items set for disposal as well as the contents of the HEPA vacuum must be carefully kept away in sealed plastic bags. To avoid recontamination with mold, these bags should not be dragged through the home while cleaning the rest of the rooms but be thrown out through the window and discarded.
Again, the entire mold remediation process is best done one room at a time, if the process is to be a success.
References and Resources
https://www.epa.gov/mold/mold-remediation-schools-and-commercial-buildings-guide – This page has plenty of information on how to remove mold.