Is this mold toxic? How do I get rid of it?

Q and A on mold based off frequently asked questions by our clients. Our cleaners follow EPA guidelines for cleaning mold. When in doubt.. call a professional.

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How fast does mold grow?

Mold can grow rather rapidly. Even an uncleaned up spill cause cause mold in ideal conditions if not dried within 48 hours.

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How do I know if it’s black mold?

If you have ever seen mold that looks soft and furry? That is likely toxic black mold. The only way to tell for certain is to have it lab-tested. Not all black mold is toxic black mold. Toxic black mold is most commonly found in basements and attics.

Black mold, as the name implies, is often dark in color. When searching for black mold, look for circular-shaped spots that are black, dark green or dark brown. Some black mold can also take on shades of orange or have flecks of white within it. 

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How do I clean mold if I don’t or can’t hire a professional?

If the mold is new, you can use a green method. It’s the least expensive way to tackly mold. For a natural solution for getting rid of black mold, combine one part baking soda with five parts distilled white vinegar and five parts water in a spray bottle. This method only works on hard surfaces. If your carpet has mold, it must be removed and the under flooring examined ASAP.

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Answer

How do I clean mold if I don’t or can’t hire a professional?

If the mold is new, you can use a green method. It’s the least expensive way to tackly mold. For a natural solution for getting rid of black mold, combine one part baking soda with five parts distilled white vinegar and five parts water in a spray bottle. This method only works on hard surfaces. If your carpet has mold, it must be removed and the under flooring examined ASAP.

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What are the symptoms of exposure to toxic mold?

The respiratory system is the most common target for mold exposure. Rashes, chronic coughing, sneezing and fatigue, irritation to the eyes and mucous membranes of the nose and throat, and persistent headaches are all symptoms of exposure to toxic mold.

Longer exposure to toxic mold can be even more dangerous. Nausea, vomiting, and bleeding in the lungs and nose are symptoms of an allergic reaction.

The trichothecene mycotoxins produced by black toxic mold are neurotoxic. This means they can kill neurons in the brain and destroy a person’s mental abilities. They may also cause nervous system disorders such as tremors or personality changes such as mood swings and irritability.

The mycotoxins then find their way into the person’s bloodstream. This leads to heart damage and may cause problems with blood clotting and internal or external hemorrhaging. When mycotoxins come into contact with eye cells, they cause inflamed and injured eyes resulting in vision problems.

Black toxic mold can also cause soreness of the muscles and joints and tiredness, in general.

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What steps can I take to prevent mold in my home?

Thoroughly inspect each facet of the home, not just the affected room, carefully noting any area of concern as it relates to existing mold, water intrusion such as cracks in windows, old and cracked caulking, windows that don’t shut completely, same goes for doors and faucets.

Test your home for high humidity. If you have only a few rooms with humidity issues, consider purchasing good dehumidifiers, and moisture-absorbing crystals, and adding or upgrading your fans.

  • Ensure proper ventilation and airflow by opening your windows, but do not leave them open on humid or raining days. Check windowsills for sitting water prior to closing windows, sprinklers are sneaky with getting windowsills wet without homeowners noticing. 
  • Use a dehumidifier or A/C to reduce humidity
  • Move furniture away from the wall so there is adequate airflow. Same goes for closets.
  • Clean and dry any spills within 48 hours
  • Avoid leaving stacks of papers, clothing, or bedding undisturbed for long periods of time
  • Upgrade your walls and ceiling insulation if condensation is a constant issue in your bedroom. Check your crawl space and attic every few months for mold if you live in a humid state.
  • Search and fix any water leaks throughout your house or hire a professional to do so. Check under sinks, around outdoor faucets, and around garage plumbing.
  • Thoroughly clean all summer furniture and pool toys (pools too) prior to and after each seasonal use. Make sure everything is extremely dry before packing it away in a dark attic or storage unit. Mold spreads…. fast.

 

 

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Does the Ms. Fix It Team clean mold?

Our team does handle the initial remediation of mold issues. We will clean and attempt to locate the cause of the mold but we do not remove carpets or drywall. If mold is growing under your tiles, flooring, behind floorboards, or into your walls, you will need a team of experts to come and seal off the room for a larger remediation. Keep in mind that mold will continue to come back if the underlying issue isn’t fixed.