Stachybotrys is commonly referred to as black mold. It is the most commonly known mold. Also, it is the most dangerous. Black mold is toxic. As a result, it can cause fear for any property owner that discovers it. We encourage you to educate yourself on the causes and remedies to best protect your family and property. Due to the toxic nature of black mold, a DIY project or choosing a company based only on price is not an option. The reputation for causing severe illnesses has been established through many documented medical studies. Improper removal can cause serious side effects and extensive property damage. Using a certified and experienced mold professional is the only option when dealing with black mold.
Black mold can develop anywhere we have the three ingredients for mold: moisture, materials, and time. First of all, it is normally located in areas that have had moisture trapped for a length of time. The invisible areas that are unseen. Hence, black mold is often found behind molding, woodwork, drywall, cabinets, & mirrors. Under the carpet, flooring, & tile. Above ceilings, floor joists, & insulation. Also, attics and crawl spaces can be the perfect breeding ground for toxic mold. Due to the dark, damp, humid conditions. When attics and crawl spaces are not properly ventilated or insulated.
- The texture is slimy and sometimes crystallized. However, it can also grow in a fuzzy “airy” texture.
- The color can vary but most common is black or dark green.
- The odor can be very strong and its most commonly referred to as “musty”.
- Can cause immediate symptoms like sore throat, nasal congestion, headaches even with minimal exposure
Most general contractors don’t regard the health dangers of black mold. Many people don’t know that toxic mold can cause cancer or Alzheimer. Severe respiratory issues, headaches, asthma, dizziness, joint pain, fatigue, & depression. Furthermore, steps to ensure proper removal are rarely considered. So, someone who does not understand the volatile airborne properties of mold, it appears that mold removal is not a big deal and anyone can remove it.
Most people’s natural approach is to respond to the dangers of the black mold by removing it quickly. Because they are thinking that they have solved the problem. But actually, they have made it worse. Our greatest caution is NOT to do a knee jerk reaction and start pulling the mold out. As the video below explains. One small mold removal area, done incorrectly caused major illness and extensive property damage. Mold spores are very small and become airborne at the smallest disturbance. Similar protocols to asbestos removal are utilized due to the high risk associated with black and toxic mold removal.
- If the molded area you have found is larger than 10 square feet
- Overwhelming smell or musty
- The area has been wet previously due to water damage
- Causing respiratory issues, rashes or other symptoms of mold exposure
- The molded area is located next to any type of ventilation register, heating or cooling unit
We have done many black mold removal projects in kitchens throughout the years. However, one stands apart in our minds. The job was a very large, high-end commercial-grade kitchen in a high-end home of Mission Hills, KS. From all outside appearances, everything was great. There were no visible signs of mold in the kitchen. However, a strong musty odor was present and the homeowner reported being sick. After a mold test revealed elevated levels of Stachybotrys, we began our investigation.
We found a substantial amount of black mold behind the kitchen cabinets. It was so dense that it grew vertically off the wall, over one-inch-thick. There had been a water leak in an upstairs bathroom a year prior. The homeowner followed the right steps and contacted a water damage restoration company to clean up after the leak. The franchise company cleaned up all visible water and everything appeared to be in order. However, they neglected to dry the wall cavities and behind the kitchen cabinets. The result of this company’s negligence resulted in a complete gut of the kitchen. Also, and most importantly they risked the health of the family that occupied it.
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