Can I clean up mold myself?
This is a very common questions that is regularly search on the internet. In certain cases, yes, mold can be cleaned up by yourself, however, you should consult with a professional first to make sure that it is safe for you to do.
Surface mold is the most common type of mold that is usually safe for you to clean yourself. It tends to be whitish-gray in colour and is fuzzy looking (not embedded in the wall). Surface mold is typically found on;
- in fridge
If you are cleaning up mold yourself, after you have checked with a professional, there are certain precautions you need to take before you begin. This will ensure that you, your family, co-workers and pets are protected from mold cross containmination throughout your home and property.
Do not attempt mold cleanup on your own if:
- There is more than 10 sqft of mold
- If Children occupy the space
- If you are Elderly or if elderly People occupy the space
- If you have an immune deficiency Disorder or if people with an immune deficiency occupy the space.
- If the mold was caused by contaminated water (Sewage or water that has been there for more than 24 hours.)
In all of the cases mentioned, a mold cleanup needs to be performed by certified and experienced Mold Removal Company. Please Do not attempt to cleanup mold on your own if there are children, Elderly People or people with immune deficiencies occupying the space. These individuals have the highest risk for health problems associated with mould and extreme precautions need to be taken. In some cases, and Industrial Hygienist needs to be involved to ensure that all elevated mold levels are brought back to safe breathing conditions.
Caution needs to be taken when attempting a mold cleanup and removing moldy materials. When it comes to mould; what you see isn’t always what you get. You may start removing moldy drywall and moldy materials and realize there is a much bigger mold problem then you had originally thought. In this event, seal off the contaminated area and contact a mold expert immediately.
If the mold is a result of a sewage backup or contaminated water a certified mold and water restoration company needs to be contacted to remove, cleanup and discard affected materials properly. This form of mold can be extremely harmful to ones health and you need to ensure the area is disinfected completely and no cross-contamination occurs.
What is needed for an effective Mold Cleanup?
- Rubber Gloves
- Particulate Respirator with P100 Filters
- Mold Suits
- Vacuum with a sealed Hepa Filtration System (Vacuum all surfaces)
- Cleanup using a Natural Disinfectant and Disinfect all surfaces
- T.S.P to Clean Concrete
- 6mm Poly Bags and Duct Tape
- Seal off Duct vents in the contaminated area
- 6mm Poly to create Barricades to contain contaminated area
- Air Scrubbers (Negative Air Machines) with Hepa Filtration System to create negative Pressure in the contaminated area and to filter the air.
How is Mold Cleaned up Successful?
- The mold contaminated area needs to be sealed off completely from the rest of your home or business.
- The mold contaminated area needs to be put under negative pressure this is obtained with the use of Negative Air Machines (Air Scrubbers) with tubes sending filtered air directly outside, a Secondary Filter on a Window bringing Filtered air back in the mould contaminated space and Barricades sealing off all entry ways into the space and Sealing off any duct vents in the mold contaminated space.
- Removal of Organic Porous Moldy Materials such as Clothing, Carpets, Ceiling Tiles, Drywall, Pressed Board and Upholstery in most cases can’t be cleaned effectively and must be disposed of. Semi Porous Moldy Materials such as Wood Studs may be able to be saved depending how affected the material is but the mold can’t just be cleaned, it must be completely removed, this is done by sanding or ice or soda blasting. Non-Porous Materials can be saved but must be completely disinfected. Moldy materials must be bagged In 6mm Poly and Sealed before removing from the contaminated area.
- All surfaces in the entire area must be Hepa Vacuumed, then all surfaces must be disinfected and then Hepa vacuumed again.
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