15August

Mold: Taking the East By Storm

Storms cause wide spread flooding throughout NY & NJ
Over the past couple of days there have been news reports on recent storms within the tri-state area of New York and New Jersey that have caused wide spread flooding of homes and commercial properties. It is important to stress that when a home or business has been flooded, proper drying and restoration is paramount to ensure the impacted areas do not grow mold.
Several weeks after a storm that causes flooding of a home, we get dozens of calls from people who complain of a musty smell. When asked if their home or property was flooded generally they answer yes. The callers say we had a flood in our home, but we mopped up the water and towel dry the floors. Afterwards everything appeared dry. But now we are starting to smell a musty smell and are concern about mold.
What many people do not realize is that there is a science behind drying! All building materials have what is considered to be a normal moisture content range. Generally, sheet rock walls normal moisture content range is between 8% to 12% no more then 3% percentage points above that range (ie..15%). Building materials (ceiling, walls, floors and carpets) may appear dry even when wet. In fact, impacted building materials can be as little as 19% -20% moisture content range and to the feel, touch and naked eye appear dry. However, wet enough to colonize mold!

Additionally, water takes the path of least resistance moving from wet to dry. As a result, it is very likely areas adjacent and adjoining the impacted areas may be affected when water seeps into walls and wick up the inside of the walls compromising wall cavity insulation and potentially harboring mold growth.

Homes or commercial properties impacted with flooding need to be dried within 24 to 48 hours in order to arrest any potential mold growth. If the water intrusion was result of ground water or sewer backup, the potential for bacteria and other contaminates can impact building materials and if so, need to be remove and discarded.

More importantly, many homes house their HVAC systems within areas like the basement or crawl space that have been flooded. Often the HVAC systems are overlooked and when impacted can cause mold to grow in the HVAC system and then distribute mold spores through the home.

If your home or commercial property was recently flooded, consider a mold inspection from Certified Mold Inspections, Inc. Certified Mold Inspections employs a wealth of tools and technologies, such as infra-red cameras and moisture meters to detect and identify any hidden moisture that many times is hard to detect with the naked eye and touch. These tools can assist in defining the extent and scope of the impacted areas. Certified Mold Inspections can employ generally accepted testing methodologies to ensure that property is within a normal fungal ecology. Contact us today for further information of Finding the Mold.