What Do Restoration Companies Actually Do?
Mold and water damage go together like peanut butter and jelly — potentially hazardous jelly, that is. If you’ve recently experienced flooding or a similarly unexpected water event and you suspect you have mold, the first thing you should do is photograph any visible mold. The second thing you should do is perform a quick internet search for “best mold restoration companies near me.” Mold removal is a job that’s almost always best done by experienced professionals. Here’s what to expect when they arrive.
Assessment and Planning
The first thing the mold restoration team will do is determine the extent of the mold growth in your home. Often, visible mold suggests that more mold is hidden nearby, such as behind drywall or under carpeting. Depending on how great the mold contamination is at your home, this visit can be relatively quick.
If carpets need to be removed or drywall needs to be opened up, however, this initial assessment may take longer. Afterward, the remediation team will draft a plan of attack for ridding your residence of mold.
Some assessments may involve a mold sample being taken as well. This can help determine the level of hazard involved, particularly in homes where members of the household have preexisting respiratory conditions that make them especially sensitive to mold growth.
Mold thrives in dark, wet conditions and can take root on a damp, porous surface in a single day. If your home has a leaking pipe or other unaddressed water sources, the next step will be to stop that water. After all, there’s no point in removing mold if you’re going to continue creating conditions in which mold thrives.
Many remediation companies employ infrared scanners and other technology to identify hard-to-find leaks. In some cases, exploratory removal of drywall may be necessary. Once the water source or sources are located, they’ll be repaired and returned to the condition they were in before the influx of water.
Once the water is stopped, it’s time to dry out the affected area. Industrial fans and dehumidifiers will likely be employed to speed up the drying process. Any items that can’t be fully dried, such as drywall or mattresses, will be disposed of properly so as to eliminate the continued threat of mold.
At a minimum, the mold removal team will likely isolate the affected area by closing the windows and doors and turning off the central heating and cooling system. This is to prevent the spread of spores to other parts of the home.
In some cases, particularly if the affected area is large, the mold restoration professionals may seal off the zone using plastic sheeting and duct tape. Negative pressure may also be applied to drive itinerant spores outside.
When the affected surfaces and items are dry and the area is contained, remediation technicians will clean them using a variety of methods:
- Fungicide may be applied to nonporous surfaces, such as bathroom tile, countertops, and metal.
- Wood may be sanded to remove mold.
- A variety of vacuums may be used to remove mold, dust, and debris, including wet-dry vacuums, dry ice vacuums, and HEPA particulate vacuums.
If the remediation team believes that mold spores have entered the central air system, such as through the air vents, they’ll clean your home’s HVAC system as well. This will prevent spores from traveling throughout the entire home.
Mold that cannot be completely removed from porous, permanent surfaces such as your home’s studs may be encapsulated. During this process, a barrier is painted over the mold, sealing it off and preventing it from spreading. Most encapsulating products also include antimicrobial properties to discourage future mold growth.
The best mold restoration companies will help you repair and restore your home after the cleaning process concludes. The extent of the repairs performed varies from company to company and can include work such as the following:
- Installing new carpet
- Painting new drywall
- Re-tiling kitchens, bathrooms, and floors
- Restoring furniture
- Restoring fabrics
If you find mold in your home, or even if you simply suspect that there might be mold growth lurking behind the walls, your best step is usually to enlist the help of the best mold restoration companies. Trust United Water Restoration to safely and thoroughly rid your home of mold.