Consumer Mold Information

November 10, 2014 by  
Filed under In the News

Comments Off on Consumer Mold Information

We feel it’s important to educate yourself as to the various exposures you may be facing. Here’s a video that might aid you in understand hygiene, chemical, environmental, health, and safety issues.

10 Mold Prevention Tips

December 11, 2009 by  
Filed under In the News

Comments Off on 10 Mold Prevention Tips

1). Make sure you sprinklers are not getting the sides of your home wet. Replace spray types with bubbler type if with in 3 ft. of your home. Make sure you are not over watering.

2). Regularly check under sinks, toilets and behind the refrigerator if it has an ice maker.

3). If you have a flood, get it dried out immediately, don’t hesitate to call in a specialist with dehumidifiers not just fans.

4). Regularly check the evaporation drain tube for your HVAC system, these can put out 3 or more gallons of water a day and if it gets plugged up it can drain directly into your home.

5). Change the HVAC filter every 3 months.

6). Use a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter.

7). Open a window in the bathroom when showering and run the exhaust fan during and after showering to remove all steam.

8). Make sure all planters, slabs and walkways are below slab and sloped away from the home.

9). Do not have plants growing on or very close to the walls of the home.

10). Check and repair your roof after every wind storm.

Homeowner finds $100K in mold damage

August 21, 2009 by  
Filed under In the News

Comments Off on Homeowner finds $100K in mold damage

LEE COUNTY: At the intersection of 19th Street SW and Olive Avenue sits a house that appears normal from the outside. But on the inside, it’s a moldy mess.

A landscaper cutting the grass noticed a broken window and called the homeowner.

Once inside, Veloz came face to face with the moldy mess.

After renters abruptly moved out a few weeks ago, vandals struck the Lehigh Acres home.

They not only broke out the front window, but then they turned on the faucet- flooding the place.

Now there’s mold everywhere.

It’s growing on the walls, the baseboard- even the ceiling.

No room escaped its wrath.

The disgusting damage totals more than $100,000.

“I don’t know what happened,” said Veloz.

Her life-long investment now has a life of its own.

While the sheriff’s office investigates the crime, the home remains empty, except for the mold.

10 Things you need to know about mold

August 21, 2009 by  
Filed under In the News

Comments Off on 10 Things you need to know about mold


by Arnold Mann

1. Where mold grows.

Molds grow everywhere, from the surface of Antarctic rocks to the inside windows of Soviet spacecraft. Molds are a part of nature. We are exposed to them every day. For most people molds only become a problem when they start growing indoors and the air inside a building becomes concentrated with allergenic spores and mycotoxins, the chemical toxins that some molds produce.

2. What happens when molds come indoors.

Airborne mold spores coming from outside are not generally a problem, at least not until they find a damp indoor haven ( a roof or plumbing leak, or high indoor humidity) in which to start setting up colonies and reproducing. The resulting high concentration of spores and mycotoxins is recirculated throughout the building by the HVAC system and can be a serious health problem, particularly to sensitive or allergic individuals. The elderly, infants and people who are immune compromized (people on chemotherapy, AIDS patients,etc.) are particularly at risk for mold-related health problems.

Most important is that molds need water to grow. Once a cellulose product like wood, ceiling tile, wallpaper or wallboard becomes wet, it becomes a mold food source. Without water, mold cannot survive.

3. What molds can do to your body

Molds can cause many health problems, including allergic and toxic reactions. Allergic reactions are much more common, occurring predominantly among people with a family history of allergies. Allergic reactions include: asthma attacks, chronic sinusitis and various other respiratory problems. Recent studies have also suggested that certain mycotoxin-producing molds may cause pulmonary hemorrhaging in infants and memory impairment in older children and adults. The mycotoxins appear to have toxic effects on the lungs and nervous system, though doctors are not certain exactly how the damage occurs.

Allergists tests for specific molds are not as useful as those for pollens, stinging insects, mites and pets because many molds cross-react with one another, so it is difficult for doctors to tell which mold is causing the problem. However, finding which mold you are allergic to is not as important, experts say, as getting rid of the mold, which will go a long way in helping solve the problem.

4. How to find out if mold is living in your home or office

There are numerous ways to test for mold, and no single way works all the time. If you can see mold, or if there is an earthy or musty odor, you can assume you have a mold problem. The first step is to identify the moisture source and correct it. 

Mold can grow in vast quantities behind walls, and it may not show up in air sampling, because spores may not be airborne at the time of sampling. Or some samplers cannot detect dead spores, which can also be a health threat. But, if there is mold growth in a building, a knowledgeable investigator using a good lab can usually detect it.

Before hiring a building investigator, ask about their training in indoor air, particularly in mold sampling. Ask whether they use an accredited lab, and check their references. What special training and experience have they acquired for investigating mold in buildings? How will they determine if sampling is appropriate? How many types of samples do they have experience taking? Do they use a laboratory accredited for environmental microbiology?

Test results should say whether there is evidence of mold growth in a building and what kinds of mold have been found rather than providing mold counts, which alone are useless

5. Dead mold is still dangerous

Dead molds are just as undesirable as live molds; they can still make you sick. Removing molds (dead and alive) is more important than killing them.

6. Some molds are more hazardous than others

Molds that produce mycotoxins, such as Stachybotrys and Trichoderma, present a greater hazard than common allergenic molds like Cladosporium and Alternaria. Health effects will vary with the specific toxin, the concentration in the air and the age and general health of the patient.

7. You can keep mold out

Mold growth and the illnesses associated with it can be prevented by keeping buildings and the air in them dry — ideally, indoor relative humidity should be kept below 60 percent. A dehumidifier will keep the humidity in the air low, but if it is not cleaned frequently, it can become a source of mold contamination itself. Any significant areas of mold growth found inside a building should be removed, not just killed, by trained individuals wearing proper protective clothing and equipment. The larger the area, the more caution is required.

8. Molds are useful organisms.

Together with bacteria, they are responsible for breaking down organic matter. They are among the principal micro-organisms involved in biodeterioration, which gives us compost and many other useful things.

9. Molds make up 25 percent of the biomass of the earth.

10. Molds have been causing humans grief since time began.

Mold Related Health Risks

August 20, 2009 by  
Filed under In the News

Comments Off on Mold Related Health Risks

Mold Spores

Mold is not just an ugly sight that can ruin clothing or furniture; it is a health hazard that can seriously contaminate the air you breathe. Mold produces microscopic cells called “spores” that can be spread through air, water, or even on the bodies of insects.

Mold Related Symptoms

  • Causes allergic reactions
  • Triggers asthma attacks
  • Increases susceptibility to colds and flu
  • Causes sinus infections

Health Risks
Some people are more sensitive to mold than others. There does not have to be an extensive amount of mold in an area to affect certain people.

  • Infants
  • Children
  • Immune-compromised patients
  • Pregnant women
  • People who have respiratory problems
  • People with allergies or asthma
  • The elderly

Toxic Mold such as Stachybotrys and Memnoniella can cause serious and sometimes fatal health conditions. Remember that all molds can be harmful to your health, especially in your home and especially to people with allergies.

  • You may develop a skin rash.
  • Flu like symptoms such as nasal stuffiness, fever, headaches, abdominal pain and diarrhea may occur.
  • Can induce serious respiratory problems.
  • Causes eye irritation.
  • May cause wheezing or shortness or breath.

People with chronic illnesses, such as obstructive lung disease, may develop mold infections in their lungs.

Toxic Mold Exposure
Symptoms of black mold or toxic mold exposure may not seem life threatening at the onset. Over time more serious illnesses may develop.

  • Nasal Congestion
  • Irritation of the eyes
  • Inflammation of the sinuses
  • Irritation of the skin
  • Breathlessness
  • Headache
  • Runny nose
  • Fatigue
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Hoarseness

More serious symptoms

  • Inflammation of the ear
  • Bleeding Lungs
  • Nose Bleeds
  • Memory Loss
  • Arthralgia ( Pain in the joints without swelling )

World Health Organization publishes its first indoor air quality guidelines on dampness and mold

July 16, 2009 by  
Filed under In the News

Comments Off on World Health Organization publishes its first indoor air quality guidelines on dampness and mold

World Health Organization publishes its first indoor air quality guidelines on dampness and mold

WHO guidelines for indoor air quality: dampness and mold

Copenhagen and Bonn, 16 July 2009

Today, WHO publishes its first guidelines on indoor air quality, addressing dampness and mould. (1) They are the result of a rigorous two-year review of the currently available science by 36 leading experts worldwide, coordinated by the WHO Regional Office for Europe. The authors conclude that occupants of damp or mouldy buildings, both private and public, have up to a 75% greater risk of respiratory symptoms and asthma. The guidelines recommend the prevention or remediation of dampness- and mould-related problems to significantly reduce harm to health.

“As people spend most of their daily lives in homes, offices, schools, health care facilities or other buildings, the quality of the air they breathe indoors is critical for their health and well-being,” says Dr Srdan Matic, Unit Head, Noncommunicable Diseases and Environment at the WHO Regional Office for Europe. “For the first time, these guidelines offer guidance to public health and other authorities on how to ensure safety and healthy conditions in buildings. We believe that this work will contribute to improving the health of people around the world.”

The book is the first in a series of WHO guidelines on indoor air quality. They are intended for worldwide use, to protect health under various environmental, social and economic conditions. Future publications addressing selected chemicals and combustion products are being prepared. Together, the guidelines will comprise the first-ever comprehensive evidence-based recommendations to tackle indoor air pollution, one of the major causes of death and disease worldwide.

Globally, about 1.5 million deaths each year, mostly among women and children in developing countries, are associated with the indoor combustion of solid fuels. In the European Union (EU) alone, combustion, chemicals from building materials and dampness cause an annual loss of over 2 million years of healthy life due to premature death or to chronic diseases, such as asthma and cardiovascular diseases.

In many EU countries, 20–30% of households have problems with dampness. Strong evidence indicates that this is a risk to health. In damp conditions, hundreds of species of bacteria and fungi grow indoors and emit spores, cell fragments and chemicals into the air. Exposure to these contaminants is associated with the incidence or worsening of respiratory symptoms, allergies, asthma and immunological reactions. Children are particularly susceptible. According to recent evidence, 13% of childhood asthma in developed countries in the WHO European Region could be attributable to damp housing.

Knowledge of indoor air pollutants is the key to enabling action to prevent related health effects and maintain clean air. Many of these actions are beyond the power of individual building users and occupants, and must be taken by public authorities. The guidelines recommend measures to ensure that buildings are well designed, constructed and maintained, and to make adequate housing and occupancy policies. Building owners are responsible for providing healthy workplaces or living environments, free of moisture and mould, by ensuring adequate insulation. Occupants are responsible for managing the use of water, heating and ventilation to avoid excess humidity.

“In the absence of clear evidence, building standards and regulations have not sufficiently targeted prevention and control of excess moisture. The new guidelines are essential, as they provide reference criteria for what constitutes healthy indoor air,” concludes Dr Michal Krzyzanowski, Regional Adviser, Noncommunicable Diseases and Environment at the WHO Regional Office for Europe, and the leader of the WHO project to draw up the guidelines. “More than 100 studies on the health effects of damp environments were reviewed in the preparation process. This body of evidence forms the basis of the guidelines and provides a solid foundation for action.”