Cover The Ground With A Vapor Barrier
As you finish up, we know there will be a place where you are not even thinking of keeping clean or scrubbing. To scrub every surface, youâll need to cover the ground with a vapor barrier.
People often forget to do this, and as the winds blow and the rains come falling, the mold spores in the sand of the crawl space are disturbed. Creating new mold spores that take root and quickly overtake every spot you have already cleaned properly.
A vapor barrier helps to keep the wood from absorbing ground moisture. Mold canât flourish. Mold needs moisture to grow, so aim to keep your wood moisture content at 18% or below. Ideally, you should aim for 14% or less.
Use a moisture meter to check the wood moisture content. A good moisture meter that wonât damage your floor joists is the Klein Tools Pinless Moisture Meter available at Amazon.
What Are The Risks
Mold cells are usually present in both indoor and outdoor air. This is normal and typical levels do not normally cause negative health effects to healthy individuals. When these mold cells find water and food, they proliferated and release many more spores into the air.
Even in healthy individuals, this increase in airborne spores can irritate the airways and eyes. Certain species of mold may release toxins that cause further harm. If someone in the household has an immune disorder, like an overactive or underactive response, symptoms may present.
Responses to mold include an allergic illness, similar to hay fever or asthma. If you inhale live mold, a respiratory infection may develop and additional toxic effects may occur from high levels of certain molds.
If symptoms are present, you might want to get the mold tested by a lab to help guide medical treatment.
How To Get Rid Of Mold In The Basement
Mold is a severe problem in houses that you shouldnt overlook. Its not only ugly, but it has the potential to create significant health issues.
Mold can be hazardous to anybody. But the elderly, newborns, and people with allergies are most at risk from mold exposure. Residents of houses with mildew and moisture are also at a higher risk of developing asthma and respiratory problems.
It is critical to address mold in the basement as soon as possible to avoid it spreading and destroying the surfaces it is growing on.
Dont give up if you have mold on basement walls. Read on for our guide on how to get rid of mold in your basement and prevent it from coming back.
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Dry Out Your Crawl Space
Next, dry your crawl space. The water may have evaporated, but foundation walls, studs and joists will still be soaked. This can cause them to weaken over time, and lead to mold.
High-volume fans or structural drying dehumidifiers will speed up drying times. These devices are used to dry your crawl space following a flood or leak. While house fans can work, they may take longer to dry your crawl space and cause more damage.
If crawl spaces have dirt floors, the fans can be left on for several days more to dry the dirt. This may seem redundant, but wet dirt can cause more problems.
Water expands when it freezes and can crack your foundation in winter. Your crawl space can get very humid in the summer. This can lead to mold and unpleasant odors.
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How To Remove Mold In Basements And Crawl Spaces
Lets say that, despite your best efforts, you develop a mold problem in either your basement or crawl spaces. What can be done to remove mold growth? At Mold Inspection Network, we are firm believers in the power of proper mold cleanup procedures. It is important to note that proper mold cleanup procedures include the physical cleaning of affected areas as well as the complete removal of damaged materials- not just treatment of the area. Lets look at a few of the ways to remove mold in basements and crawl spaces.
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Eliminating Mold Caused By Basement Foundation Cracks
A crack in the foundation will often lead to a small water leak along the perimeter wall of your basement , which will dampen the local interior drywall, which will then lead to moldy drywall. The best way to fix a crack in your foundation is open up the walls, thereby exposing the crack in the concrete, and have it sealed and filled by a qualified mold remediation professional.
How To Prevent Mold And Fungus:
We have now identified Mold and Fungus, and how they appear and function within a crawl space. A few tips to prevent and treat fungus in your crawl space include:
- Check the Humidity-Measuring the humidity allows you to know if the percentage is high enough to feed fungal growth within your crawl space.
- Remove the Moisture– Have a professional inspect your home before beginning any treatments. They will have the appropriate tools and tips necessary to address what measures should be taken to solve the issues seen.
- Borate Treatments- Borate soaks into the affected wood and prevents any mold or fungus from returning to the affected area.
- Wood Treatment/ Repair- If the wood is not significantly damaged, wood treatments are an option to strengthen and repair the existing wood. If the damage is significant, repair and replacement of the affected wood would be needed.
- Crawlspace Enclosure/Encapsulation– While crawl space enclosures may be more costly than most home repairs, the benefits are far greater. Enclosures help eliminate moisture, increase energy efficiency in your home, help control pests, and help improve overall health of the home.
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Introduction Crawl Space Cleaning
Mold in crawl spaces is very common and can often be corrected with a little patience and hard work. We have been saying for years that there is no such thing as a crawl space with no mold growth in it. While this is probably an exaggeration, it certainly isnt far from the truth. It is a very common problem that, while oftentimes not a health issue, is a growing resale issue that requires attention prior to listing a home for sale.
The cost of cleaning up crawl spaces can be very expensive. Indiana Mold Remediation has always sought to find the best solution to mold problems that meet both remediation needs as well as account for the available resources of the homeowner. While we have worked hard to provide a high value for our cleaning services in crawl spaces, this guide is designed as an instruction manual for the do-it-yourselfers trying to address this hidden problem themselves and save the cost of hiring a professional. Keep in mind, cleaning up mold in a crawlspace can be very labor-intensive and quite messy, it isnt for the faint-hearted! Understanding your own abilities is an important first step before taking on a project of this size and scope.
Some items that you will need for your cleaning include:
Pump Sprayer or other Spray Equipment
Soft Bristle Brush
High-Pressure Fan or several low-pressure fans
Basement Cracks And Flooding
Crawl spaces are at risk of flooding during periods of intense rain. If your crawl space floods, mold could appear immediately after the water recedes.
If you have cracks in your basement floor or walls, then you should also investigate if they are linked to any moisture penetration that may be exacerbating your mold problem. For example, faulty sump pumps, poor grading around your foundation, and improperly sealed windows could be the source of the problem.
Some crawl space designs call for plastic sheeting on the floor this barrier traps water against the foundation walls. The trouble is that the plastic breaks down over time. As it deteriorates, holes develop, and water seeps through them into the soil. Water accumulates in the crawl space just as it does in any basement.
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Do Small Tight Crawl Spaces Cost More To Fix
If you have mold in your small tight crawl space, the first step is to dry the wood and lower humidity. If a dehumidifier will not fit inside the door of the crawl space or the ceiling is too low. Access to the crawl space will need to be created.
This can be done by removing the sub-floor or making larger openings in the foundation wall. But, this can be expensive and a larger foundation wall opening can still hinder dehumidifiers in low crawl spaces with sweating duct-work. Imagine the time and materials it takes to make this happen and that is just to dry the crawl space.
What Causes A Moldy Crawl Space
Humidity. If you have a high-humidity environment in your crawl space, the odds are good that you have mold. If you see puddles of standing water, then youre almost certainly going to have mold in your crawl space.
Before you can even think about killing the mold in your crawl space, youll need to remedy any moisture issues. Leaky pipes, poor drainage, or rain and snow freely entering the crawl space will all cause mold growth. You should dry out the crawl space as much as possible to prevent the mold from coming back. Getting the humidity level in the air to below 45% is ideal. You can also check the moisture content of the wood in the crawl space with a surface moisture meter. You should aim for a moisture level of below 15% in the wood.
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Other Mold Prevention Methods
Your first plan of attack is always preventing growth in the first place. To do this, you need to find out what is causing the moisture in your crawl space.
Check your dirt and your pipes. If your pipe is leaking, fix it. If the issues seem to be the dirt, you can place a dehumidifier or moisture absorber in your crawl space.
Here are a few other methods to help you prevent moisture in your crawl space:
- Add a plastic vapor barrier.
- Seal up your vents
- Protect your crawlspace from outdoor elements by building a barrier around your house.
- Think about installing insulation under the floor.
Dealing With Crawl Space Mold In Chicago Il Or Suburbs Were Here To Help
If you decide to take on mold in the crawl space, removal techniques are very important, so please follow our guidelines carefully. We want you to stay safe. Wear protective gear, and take your time.
Dont hesitate to call us if you have any second thoughts about doing it yourself. We have years of experience with crawl space cleaning services in Chicago and the suburbs. Our services cover residential and commercial properties, and our team members are industry certified in mold removal and remediation.
When the job makes you think twice, call us first here at ServiceMaster Restoration by Zaba: 773-647-1985
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Hazardous Mold That Dwells In Crawl Spaces
Your crawl space is likely to have the following mold types:
- Cladosporium is a dominant fungus and if youve got young children, you want to protect them from this fungus as it can cause severe respiratory complications in young children and asthmatic people. Cladosporium is a black crawling mold which thrives on cloth material, wood and dirt, on painted walls, in HVAC systems, on paper, food, and mattresses.
- Alternaria is a popular mold which can cause coughing, wheezing, sneezing, and a wide range of breathing complications.
- Stachybotrys is a hazardous mold that grows in a crawl space. Its dangerous for everybody who comes into contact with it. If you notice this type of mold, you should contact a professional crawl space cleaner to avoid spreading the mold in different areas in your home.
Can Black Mold In Crawl Space Make You Sick
Yes, stachyboytrys can make you sick. Minor symptoms mirror allergies and include nosebleeds, a stuffy nose, itchy eyes, and coughing. Longer exposure yields headaches, repetitive chest colds, sinusitis, fatigue, and a seemingly unending cough. Prolonged exposure can cause memory loss, nerve issues, muscle cramping, weight gain, anxiety, and trouble concentrating.
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Brushes Scrubbers And Abrasive Material
Once everything has been sealed, and you have read the instructions on the chemicals, it is time to start cleaning everything. Scrub the foundation walls with plastic brushes, flat metals with sponges and cloths, plastics with soft brushes, and every other hard surface with the hardest brushes.
Choosing which brushes work the best for your crawl space will require a judgment call from you as everyone has different types of crawl spaces. People often prefer to use one plastic brush throughout the crawl space to get everything clean.
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Do You Need Crawl Space Mold Remediation
Out of the thousands of crawl spaces in the Southeast that Crawl Space Brothers have been in over the years, guess how many were mold-free? At best 1 in 100! Every home has some sort of mold/mildew/fungal growth happening in the crawl space. Mold is commonplace in crawl spaces and is usually not something to panic about. However, there are varying degrees of mold in a crawl space. Ture mold remediation is generally required only when the mold is a 9 or 10 on a 1-10 scale. Mold remediation means hazmat suits, vacating the home, mold in the walls and drywall, and much more. Most crawl spaces can be fixed with a simple mold/fungal growth clean up job. This consists of spraying the colonies and wiping them clean.
If you think there may be mold in your crawl space, it is always good to have a professional do an inspection. Crawl Space Brothers does not offer full mold remediation and is not licensed to do so however, we do offer great fungal growth/mold cleanup that is enough for almost every crawl space.
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How To Get Rid Of Mold In Your Home: Crawl Space Solutions And Uv Light
Wednesday, July 27th, 2022
Mold can be a huge problem in homes, especially if it is not dealt with properly. Mold can cause a variety of health problems, and it can also damage your home. In this blog post, we will discuss how crawlspaces can cause mold in your home, and how you can use UV light to kill mold. We will also provide some solutions for getting rid of mold in your crawlspace!
Mold is a type of fungi that can grow both indoors and outdoors. Mold grows in damp, dark, and humid environments. Mold spores are present in the air, and when they find a suitable environment, they will start to grow. When mold spores land on a wet or damp surface, they will start to germinate and produce mold mycelium. The mold mycelium will then produce more spores, which can spread the mold problem to other areas of your home.
Another way to prevent mold growth in your home is to use UV light. UV light can kill mold spores, and it can also help to prevent mold growth. UV light is safe for humans and animals, and it will not cause any damage to your home. A local mold prevention and waterproofing specialist can provide powerful UV lights to treat the mold growing in your home. Be sure to ask you local crawl space and waterproofing company about this safe and effective solution.
Should I Remove Mold In My Crawl Space
If you suspect that you might have a mold problem in your crawl space, first of all, don’t panic. Give us a call and we’ll come out and give you a free assessment, let you know whether you have mold, and discuss what your next steps should be for mold remediation.
If it turns out you need crawl space mold removal, you can choose to have us handle it or you can research other professionals in the area. Mold is one of those things that tends to be over-stigmatized to an extent. There are a few types of mold that pose a greater threat to human and animal health, but it might not be as common as you are imagining. For sure it’s a bad thing — but it’s important to stay calm and get professional assistance.
If you do have a serious mold issue, it is very important to the to both the health of your crawl space and the rest of your home to get it removed and remediated so that it does not return.
White mold in the crawl space is very common in high humid areas. Wood rot fungus in the crawl space should not be ignored because every minute of every day it eats more and more of your joists and sub-floor.
Black mold can also be found in crawl spaces. Many believe mold in crawl spaces may be linked to health problems and should be addressed immediately.
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Mold Prevention In Crawl Spaces
Crawl space mold prevention might be scary since it is frequently an area that receives little attention in the first place. When it comes to preventing mold in your crawl space, the reality is that a few easy changes to your home care routine may make all the difference. Here are some suggestions about where to begin:
- Maintenance of the Homes Foundation:Keep a watch on your foundation, both inside and out, for any cracks. Water damage or gradual leaking might occur as a result of these fissures. Fill any cracks as soon as possible, and inspect the foundation on a regular basis. Its critical to keep water away from your homes foundation as much as possible if you want to avoid crawl space mold. This leads us to our following point concerning drainage runoff
- Upkeep of Gutters and Downspouts:As indicated in the last point, preventing water from gathering around your homes foundation is critical. Gutter and downspouts come into play in this situation. Make sure your gutters and downspouts are clear of debris to allow water to flow freely. A downspouts job is to keep water away from the foundation of the house. Downspouts must be appropriately positioned to do this. When it comes to preventing crawl space mold, properly positioned downspouts are critical since they assist prevent water damage to the foundation.