Recent Mold Remediation Posts
When a Property Inspector Finds Mold in Bedford, Mass.
Call our mold remediation specialists when a property inspector finds mold
You have so many balls to juggle when selling your Bedford home. You have to clean and make cosmetic repairs. Then you stage the living areas, schedule showings and open houses, and field the offers.
Finally, when you think you are in the homestretch, you hear the property inspector found mold.
Mold in Bedford, Mass.
Mold will make a real estate buyer nervous. You will likely need to remediate the outbreak before closing or the whole deal may fall apart.
At SERVPRO of Lexington-Bedford, we work with home sellers to remediate mold as quickly as possible. Most of the time, we are able to salvage the closing date as long as we are called in as soon as you know you have a problem.
Home buyers trust our brand. They see our trucks and commercials. They know our applied microbial remediation specialists have the training and experience to properly contain the outbreak and remediate the mold growth.
When you show your home buyers that you have trusted professionals on the job and resolving the issue, they will be reassured that they have chosen the right home from a responsible seller.
Save the Sale
Call SERVPRO of Lexington-Bedford when your property inspector finds mold in your Bedford home. We will do all we can to ensure you are clear to close on time.
Lexington, Massachusetts: Do You Need a Mold Test?
Mold only gets worse the longer you let it grow
Mold causes concern for many home and business owners. Not only is mold unpleasant to see or smell, it can also cause property damage and may have health effects for building occupants.
Do You Need a Mold Test in Lexington, MA?
We field many calls a month from people who are concerned about the possibility of mold in their building. They want to know
- Do they need testing?
- Can we do the testing?
If you can see mold or other microbes growing on building materials, you do not need mold testing. A test would merely confirm what you already know.
Here at SERVPRO of Lexington-Bedford we do not do mold testing, but we can recommend a lab if you would like.
Finding Hidden Mold
When you smell but cannot see mold, our certified production managers can usually help locate it during a free estimate. They will start by identifying the source of the moisture that provides an ideal environment for microbial growth.
Moisture meters and thermal imaging cameras allow our estimators to find moisture behind walls and beneath flooring. Once they find moisture, they know where to concentrate their efforts.
If they do find mold, our franchise professionals will advise how you should address the contamination and discourage future outbreaks.
Does It Matter What Kind of Mold?
Black mold has received a bad reputation as a particularly nasty microbe, but the treatment for any mold in your building is the same.
- Isolate the contamination.
- Remove contaminated porous materials.
- Remove mold from nonporous materials.
- Apply an anti-microbial product.
- Filter the air to extract as many spores as possible.
Testing is an added expense that does not help you combat the problem. Rather than drive up the costs of your remediation project, we recommend you call for an estimate to begin addressing the contamination.
Our crews are certified by the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification to apply the latest industry standards in mold remediation. Call SERVPRO of Lexington-Bedford for a free estimate when you suspect microbial growth in your Middlesex County building.
Mold Remediation Process
Professional mold remediation entails several procedures
When you call SERVPRO of Lexington-Bedford to clean your mold, you can trust that you will be advised by experienced crews. Our technicians are trained and certified to follow the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) S520 Standard for Professional Mold Remediation.
Mold Remediation Process
There are several steps in the mold remediation process. Not all steps will be necessary in every situation because each outbreak is unique and the response must be tailored to the job.
If a mold remediation job will require demolition and removal of materials, we will bring in an asbestos testing company to test materials in accordance with Massachusetts DEP law 310 CMR 7:15 (4). We cannot begin the job until we get the results from this testing.
Depending on the extent of the outbreak, we may need to isolate parts of the building to prevent cross-contamination. Heavy plastic sheeting with zippered closures creates a moisture barrier, and a negative air machine keeps air from escaping the containment zone.
We also have our technicians put on personal protective equipment like gloves, googles, body suits, and masks. This protects them from exposure to the contaminants.
Not all mold jobs will require demolition. However, when porous materials like drywall and carpet are contaminated, they cannot be disinfected and must be removed and discarded. As mentioned above, asbestos testing will be performed before this step to determine the proper handling and disposal of the contaminated building materials.
We use a HEPA-filtered vacuum to remove visible microbial growth from structural elements like rafters and support beams and non-porous materials like concrete. Depending on the extent of contamination, we may apply an anti-microbial solution to kill any living mold and then vacuum again to remove dead and decomposing microbes.
We usually finish by applying a botanical anti-microbial product that will discourage future mold growth on all surfaces. We then run a HEPA-filtered air filter machine for a day or two to cycle all the air inside the containment zone through the filter several times and remove as many spores and particulates as possible.
Dry If Needed
If necessary, we set up fans and dehumidifiers to dry the area. Fans speed up the process of pulling water out of building materials into the air, and the dehumidifiers extract the water vapor from the air.
Some jobs require a final pressure washing of the floors before we leave. We pack up all our machines, clean up behind ourselves and wash the floors if appropriate.
As you can see, there are many steps in the mold remediation process. Not all are necessary for every job, but our production managers are familiar with the protocols and can explain how we plan to complete the job and why we have chosen a particular course of action.
When you find a mold outbreak in your home, consult a professional mold remediation specialist as soon as possible. The sooner we begin removing and remediating, the sooner everyone in the building will be breathing easier. Call 781-861-0500 for a free estimate and let us make it “Like it never even happened.”
Attic Mold in Bedford, Mass.
Attic mold should be remediated immediately, before heat and humidity encourage more blooming.
As the weather warms in New England, many homeowners find microbial growth in their attics. Water intrusions from ice dams or moisture diverted by bathroom vents to the attic can provide the humidity necessary for mold growth, and warm temperatures encourage microbial colonies to bloom.
Bedford Attic Mold
We were recently called to a single-family ranch in Bedford, Mass. that had an outbreak in a humid attic. Our estimator found visible microbial growth on all ceiling materials in the attic.
Containing the Outbreak
Before our technicians began remediating the mold, they set up moisture barriers to contain the infestation to the attic. They also laid down plywood on the rafters to better maneuver in the confined space and keep mold from the ceiling falling down into the insulation.
Remediating the Mold
Once the area was contained, our crew HEPA vacuumed affected surfaces to remove visible microbial growth and installed a HEPA-filtered air filtration device to scrub microbial spores and other particulates out of the air. They then applied a mold remediation solution to all surfaces.
Trust Certified Mold Professionals
At SERVPRO of Lexington-Bedford, we remediate mold using the Institution of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) S520 Standard. Our technicians are IICRC-certified and will recommend the best course of action to remediate attic mold. They will also advise you on steps you can take to minimize humidity in your home and discourage future outbreaks.
Call us at the first sign of mold growth so we can help you breathe easier knowing the problem is contained and will be remediated.
Moldy Master Bath in Lexington, Mass.
Call for an estimate as soon as you suspect a mold outbreak
Many people associate mold with old homes and neglected spaces like attics and basements. However, mold can grow anywhere it finds the right balance of heat, moisture, and organic material to consume.
We were recently called to remove mold in a Lexington, Mass. home built in 2008. The shower in the master bath was built over a copper pan that allowed water to accumulate. This led to mold growth behind the tiles initially and eventually on the walls of bathroom.
At first glance, you might not have expected such a high end bathroom with separate shower and bath could support a microbial outbreak. The house was clean, well maintained, and only ten years old. However, a building defect behind the walls created a perfect environment for fungal growth.
Contain the Outbreak
Our mold-certified crew began this job by securing the area and containing the contamination. They installed a negative air machine to maintain pressure pushing into the barriers so that no contaminated air would escape. They also installed a dehumidifier to pull moisture from the air.
Remove Moldy Materials
Our technicians then removed the shower door and fixtures. They pulled out ceramic tiles to get to the wet drywall. They bagged up all the wet and contaminated drywall and used a HEPA-filtered vacuum to clean the studs, the floor, and any tiles that were not on wet drywall.
Discourage Future Microbes
After they were certain that all visible microbial growth had been removed, the mold remediation team applied a plant-based antimicrobial product to discourage future mold outbreaks. They also advised the homeowner to have the shower corrected to prevent water accumulation behind the tiles.
Whenever water sits in or on organic material, it creates an ideal situation for fungal growth. This happens in old homes and new, in apartments, condos, and office buildings in every neighborhood in Massachusetts. When it happens to you, call in the mold professionals from SERVPRO of Lexington-Bedford. We can make it, “Like it never even happened.”
How To Prevent Mold in Your Home
Keep your home dry to prevent microbial growth
No one wants mold in their home. Mold and other microbial growth looks terrible, smells worse, and may impact your family’s health. Over the long term, microbial growth on porous materials will degrade them and lower the resale value of a home.
You cannot prevent all mold in your home. Microbial spores are everywhere in the air and on surfaces looking for the ideal conditions to grow. Most of the time, these spores are in small quantities that do not cause ill effects for people in the home. However, if microbes are able to grow colonies big enough to be seen with the naked eye, they will be releasing spores in high volume.
Keep Home Dry
The key to preventing mold growth in your home is keeping it dry. Keeping the indoor humidity between 30 and 50 percent is ideal for preventing microbial growth. Anything over 60 percent humidity can provide enough moisture for mold.
Ventilate Bathrooms and Attics
Keep bathrooms well ventilated. Use a fan or open a window when feasible. If all else fails, open the door to circulate air following a bath or shower.
Moisture can get trapped in your attic as well, especially if your bathroom fan ventilates to the attic. Consult an expert if necessary to find a workable solution to preventing moisture in your attic.
Many homes get their moisture through the foundation in the basement. Consider having your basement sealed, especially if your foundation is several decades old. If your basement is prone to flooding, a French drain or sump pump may be warranted to prevent water entering your home.
Use a Dehumidifier
A dehumidifier can help regulate the moisture in your home’s air. Target 40 percent humidity for ideal comfort. Remember to empty your dehumidifier regularly to permit it to work correctly and prevent microbial growth in the appliance.
Prevent Water Losses
Even the best homes are subject to water disasters from time to time. Keep an eye on these hazards to reduce your exposure to these threats:
Washing Machine Hoses
Inspect washing machine hoses regularly and replace when they are five years old. Do not leave the house when the washer is running, so you can respond quickly to any leaks.
Hot Water Heater
Most residential hot water heater tanks hold 40 to 50 gallons. Imagine all that water spilling over your floor at once. Check your hot water heater weekly for signs of corrosion, sizzling noises, and leaks. Drain your tank every six months to remove sediment that can collect in the tank and cause corrosion.
A tiny, undetected burst pipe can soak an entire home in 48 hours or less. Take care to keep your home heated during frigid weather. Have your heating system serviced every year to ensure it will not fail when you need it most. Ask a neighbor to check on your home when you go out of town.
Address Water Intrusions
Despite your best efforts, you may experience a water loss or flood. When you do, it is important to act fast to prevent secondary microbial growth.
Dry Surfaces ASAP
Your first concern should be to dry any water you can see. You can pump out the water or use towels or mops to sop up the water. Do not hesitate to call in a professional if there is too much water for you to remove. The sooner your house is dry, the less your loss will cost in the long run.
Check for Unseen Water
Once you have the visible water under control, you need to consider the water you cannot see. Water may be sitting beneath the surface of your floorboards or behind walls. If you do not find and dry this water, you can expect mold growth later one.
Trust the professionals at SERVPRO of Lexington-Bedford to advise you on preventing mold growth in your home. Our certified water restoration technicians have the tools and expertise to determine if water is hiding out of sight in your home. They can find and the dry the moisture. And, if you waited too long and microbial growth has begun, our technicians can remediate it safely.
Basement Mold in Lexington, Mass
Treat mold as soon as you find it to save time and expense
No one likes mold growing in their home. Mold smells unclean, it looks terrible, it degrades organic building materials, and it may have health effects for the home’s inhabitants.
Mold in Basement Closet
Our franchise was called out recently to inspect a home in Lexington, Mass. because the owner thought he saw mold in the basement. Upon inspection, our production manager found surface microbial growth on the lower walls of a basement closet. He recommended cleaning and disinfecting the affected wall, but the homeowner requested that we go a step further and remove a section of drywall to be sure there was no hidden mold growth inside the wall.
Our technicians are certified by the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) in mold remediation, so they knew just what to do. They set up a barrier to prevent microbes traveling throughout the home. They installed a HEPA-filtered air scrubber to collect airborne particulates including microbial spores. They removed the affected drywall and inspected what they could see of the studs and framing inside the walls.
After our technicians established there was no additional infestation in the walls, they cleaned and deodorized the basement carpet. The homeowner was pleased with the job they did. The basement smelled fresh and clean, all visible microbial growth was removed, and the air was filtered to extract any abundance of spores.
Call for a Free Estimate
If you find mold in a basement closet, call us for a free estimate as soon as possible. Our IICRC-trained mold remediation technicians will help resolve the problem before it gets worse and more expensive to repair.
Is It Mold or Mildew?
Trust SERVPRO mitigation specialists to combat mold or mildew
We recently took a call from a concerned resident in Bedford, Mass. Her family had relocated from out of state, and her leather couch arrived covered in microbial growth.
When she complained to the mover about the condition of her couch, the mover claimed to have hired an expert who determined that this was mildew and not mold on the couch. According to the mover, the couch owner had no reason to be concerned about mildew.
Here at SERVPRO® of Lexington-Bedford, we find that distinction laughable. Both mold and mildew are considered potentially hazardous by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In fact, if you search “mildew” on their site, you will be directed to their mold pages.
Mildew is Everywhere
Both mold and mildew are fungi. Both flourish in warm, damp conditions. And both are linked to upper respiratory tract symptoms in otherwise healthy people.
You can never completely eliminate molds and mildews from your home. Their spores are everywhere, even in your refrigerator. The risk is when these microbes are permitted to grow to the point of visibility. They are then releasing a higher-than-normal amount of spores into the air.
Call in a Mitigation Specialist
If you see microbes growing on a porous surface in your home (drywall, for example), you do not need to spend extra money testing to find out which type of microbe is growing there. You need to hire a mitigation specialist who can contain the contamination, remove the microbial growth, and advise how to avoid its regrowth.
Call SERVPRO® of Lexington-Bedford at the first sign of mold or mildew. We offer free estimates and can help you control the problem before it gets worse.
Mold Remediation in a Lincoln Attic
Attic microbial growth before and after remediation
Mold grows wherever it has the proper combination of moisture, temperature, and organic matter. Attics are a common area of concern when they are not properly ventilated. Moisture and heat accumulate, and building materials provide food for the microbes.
Lincoln Attic Mold
Here at SERVPRO® of Lexington-Bedford, we frequently respond to calls regarding mold growth, particularly during humid summer months. In July, we were called to provide an estimate for the attic of a commercial building in Lincoln, Mass.
Upon arrival, our estimator found microbial growth on the wooden walls and ceiling of the attic. He prepared a free estimate for remediation, and the organization hired us to complete the job.
First Step – Contain the Contamination
The first step in a mold remediation job is to contain the area so that none of the spores get transferred to other parts of the building. We contained the contamination by setting up a barrier and using a negative air machine to draw air in without allowing it to flow out of the area.
Next step – Remove the Contaminants
This job involved HEPA vacuuming then cleaning the affected surfaces. We also used a HEPA-filtered air scrubber to remove airborne particulates including microbial spores and bacteria. With the negative air situation already established, we were able to cycle through all the air in the attic.
Final step – Apply Anti-Microbial Solution
We finished this mold remediation job by applying an all-natural anti-microbial solution to deter future microbial growth.
Remember, SERVPRO offers free estimates. If you see mold in your attic, our certified technicians have the training and expertise to remediate the situation. We are always “Here to Help.”
Tips for Mold in Your Home
Again, mold is EVERYWHERE! But here are some tips to help you rid of unnecessary mold.
- Fix water problems! Without moisture, mold cannot grow so don't feed it. If you see water damage get it fixed immediately!
- Keep the materials dry - stay aware by using your sense of smell also
- Control the humidity by keeping levels below 60%
- Ventilate "wet" rooms such as bathrooms and kitchens
- Change filters for your air condition or dehumidifier
- Toss moldy items - while some material can be saved they usually are not worth it. Keeping these items around can affect other items as well as make the air quality poorer
- Limit houseplants or refrain from over-watering them
- If the mold is visible remediate mold. Give us a call at 781.861.0500 to get a free estimate for your mold remediation. Our SERVPRO technicians are certified to remove mold from residential and commercial properties whether it be an attic, basement, bathroom or even crawlspace!
Classes of Mold
Like we always say, mold is everywhere and not all molds are harmful to us! Molds are often found in wet, damp places and can vary in color and smell. Mold is put into different categories based on their hazard:
Hazard Class C: While this group of molds are not health hazards – they can cause structural damages, and are recommended to be removed.
Hazard Class B: These are molds that if endured over long periods of time can cause allergic reactions
Hazard Class A: These are the molds we want to identify and remove immediately! These molds create toxins and if not handle correctly the air quality of a structure with steadily decline.
If you feel like your home or business might be affected by mold, give us a call at 781-647-9100. While we cannot determine what type of mold it may be – we can remediate it with no worry!
To Mold or Not to Mold
Here's one of our 1000 CFM AFD's doing its job as we remediated a kitchen full of mold!
There is mold everywhere!
While some molds can affect our health - there are molds that we benefit from! Molds can be used for medicines, for foods and wines (we all know someone who loves that extra stinky cheese) and molds biggest contribution is bio-degradation in the environment!
Mold turns into "bad mold" when it is on a sustainable food source and for many properties owners they can go months without noticing mold until they smell it - especially in the warmer months of the year! Most building materials (drywall, wood framing, wood sub flooring, debris, contents) act as hosts for these "bad" molds and when it is not remediated properly the problem can continue.
SERVPRO uses Air Scrubbers during Mold Remediations as a mean to collect airborne mold spores, bacteria and other debris.
Improving Air Quality
The SERVPRO Duct Cleaning Process
- The process begins by using patented equipment including a roto-scraper, which automatically adapts to the duct's shape and diameter while traveling through the duct, removing debris and filth before vacuuming begins.
- Next, a powerful push-pulll air delivery and collection system transfers the debris from the ducting to a 16-gallon container.
- Air is filtered through a HEPA filtration system, removing 99.97 percent of particles in the airstream. HEPA filters capture debris and keep the environment clean.
- As an optional process, a sealant or coating product may be sprayed to address odor or microbial concerns.
- Filters will either be cleaned or replaced to remove odor and dirt.
Call us at 781-647-9100 to see how we can best improve your home or businesses air quality. We can make it like it never even happened!
What is Lurking in Your Air Ducts?
Since the ventilation system is often the biggest culprit in poor indoor air quality, inspecting the ductwork should be a high priority.
In most cases, the HVAC system has been operating for some time without much attention. Dirt ducts can circulate odors, contaminants such as mold and irritating dust throughout your building or home. In some circumstances, such as after a fire, smoke or suspected mold growth, duct cleaning becomes an essential part of the cleanup process.
Keeping the HVAC system and ductwork clean can potentially extend the life span of the equipment by allowing it to operate at peak condition, which may save you money. SERVPRO can often restore the HVAC system and ductwork to pre-damage conditions.
- We provide free written inspections and estimates
- Eliminate offensive odors
- Restore peak energy efficiency
- Reduce potential for mold growth
- Remediate bacteria, fungi and mold
Mold - Don't Let It Grow!
While fungi and mold naturally occur in our environment and can add value to our lives (such as yeast, blue cheese, mushrooms and penicillin), other forms of mold can be harmful. Excessive amounts of mold, different types of mold, and/or exposure to mold may present health concerns for some people.
Intrusion of water into your home or place of business can result in mold growth. When water intrusions are not addressed right away, the resulting damage can present increase risk of harmful mold growth. Organic materials found inside a building, such as wood, paper, drywall and insulation, provide food sources for mold to flourish.
Be alert for:
- The presence of visible mold
- Strong musty odors which may indicate mold is present
- Any evidence of past moisture problems that might have caused undetected mold growth
- Excessive humidity
Help is here, if you think you might have a mold problem call us at 781-647-9100
Defending Against Mold Growth
A water damage can result in visible mold growth in as little as 24 to 48 hours, under certain conditions if not properly mitigated.
- Keep humidity between 30 to 60 percent
- Provide for proper drainage away from building foundations
- Regularly inspect plumbing and appliances for leaks
- Keep gutters and drains clear of debris
- Inspect the roof, windows and other areas where water might enter the building, and perform necessary maintenance
- Respond to all water intrusions immediately
- Contact your local SERVPRO® Franchise Professional for assistance after a water damage or if you discover mold
Not only does mold have the ability to deteriorate your home but it can also have horrible affects on your personal health. Make sure to reach out to your local SERVPRO if you are facing mold and mildew issues.
"Like it never even happened."