Most Poughkeepsie homeowners understand that mold can be dangerous for their family’s health, including elderly parents, young children, and pets. Mold can cause a wide range of serious health problems and exacerbate existing health conditions. In need of basement mold removal Poughkeepsie NY? Learn about what homeowners should know before calling a professional.
Several types of mold can live in basements. Additionally, mold contamination in a basement can spread to the rest of the home easily through a home’s wall spaces and ventilation systems. Professional mold remediation companies have the appropriate experience, equipment, and tools to remove mold from a home to keep residents and their families safe.
When this homeowner contacted us, they were concerned about mold growth in their basement. Our team came in and inspected the whole home, we completed a full basement gut and first floor wipedown when we noticed that the mold had spread to other levels of the home.
Dangers of Mold in Basements
While many types of mold are relatively harmless, such as the mold on bread that produces penicillin, some strains are particularly harmful if not treated quickly. Mold typically falls into one of three categories:
- Allergenic. Allergenic molds may not be toxic, but can trigger sneezing, red eyes, itchy eyes, itchy throats, and asthmatic reactions in patients with asthma.
- Pathogenic. Pathogenic molds can affect people with preexisting medical conditions that make them sensitive to mold, sometimes causing severe illness.
- Toxigenic. Toxigenic molds create toxic substances that can severely impair a person with regular exposure to the mold and its toxins.
Water damage, moisture, and an appropriate food source are all that many strains of mold need to propagate in a home. Most strains of mold also prefer dark spaces, and many prefer a warm environment. Some mold strains require more moisture than others.
Black mold (Stachybotrys) likes damp areas like water-damaged walls and home ventilation systems connected to larger HVAC systems. This toxigenic mold requires professional removal by licensed technicians, and its presence in a home or office building often requires water damage restoration in addition to mold removal.
Mold Growth in Poughkeepsie Homes
The exchange of hot and cold air throughout a home leads to mold growth. Typically, hot air rises through a home’s walls and vent systems, while cold air sinks to the floor and basement levels. These air currents bring mold spores with them, meaning that mold in the basement can quickly spread throughout every level of a home in a process.
Professional mold remediation requires not only steps to kill mold spores in the home but also to remove all living and dead spores from the home. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommends proper mold remediation techniques to protect occupants and reduce exposure to mold on surfaces in the home, including building materials and furniture.
How Professionals Get Rid of Mold
What do professionals do during basement mold removal and whole-home mold remediation? In most cases, mold remediation includes:
- A full home inspection. A professional mold remediator will inspect a home using air quality and moisture-reading devices to find mold spores in the basement and rooms of the home and detect high moisture levels in the basement and house walls.
- Home and furnishing protection. Depending on which areas of a home require remediation, a mold remediation company will lay down coverings over floors and furniture in safe areas of the home to protect them from mold spores.
- Containment and filtration. The mold remediation technicians will then use negative air machines, plastic sheeting, and other containment and filtration devices to secure the areas where mold is present in the basement and home.
- Separating salvageable and non-salvageable items. Inside the containment area, technicians will sort and separate non-porous salvageable items to send for cleaning from non-salvageable items such as clothing and upholstered furniture. They will document the non-salvageable items for the homeowner’s approval for destruction.
- Mold removal with professional-grade equipment. HEPA vacuums, negative air machines, and other devices will kill most mold spores. Other tools like saws may be necessary to cut away infested drywall and other building materials that are beyond repair.
- Final mold assessment. NY State Article 32 requires a mold assessor to do a final inspection for clearance to allow residents to return to their homes.
How To Prevent Mold Growth
Condensation, a high relative humidity, or water damage from a burst pipe can lead to mold growth. In a basement, sources of moisture often include laundry appliances, HVAC systems, and condensation due to higher temperatures indoors. Mold can grow on walls behind washers and dryers, near the inside air handler, and on external walls where the ground temperature can lead to condensation inside.
Installing a dehumidifier and regularly cleaning and maintaining basement washing machines, air conditioners, and furnaces can help Poughkeepsie residents prevent mold in their basements.
Basement Mold Removal Services From First Call Restoration
First Call Restoration offers professional basement mold removal in Poughkeepsie, NY. Residents of Poughkeepsie with moisture problems in their basements should call (845) 442-6714 or use the online contact form to set up an appointment to get rid of mold in their basements.