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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Mold and Your Commercial Building

3/6/2018 (Permalink)

From time to time we run into some fallacies about mold when talking with commercial property and operations team members. While unintentional, many of these fallacies could raise the risk factors for those involved in the cleanup and in the affected area. Whether it’s failing to address the risk factors associated with mold, not remediating contributing factors to the initial growth, or failing to properly identify cleanup methods- mold misconceptions can greatly interfere with the clean-up process.

Myth #1- “Just spray some bleach on it”

One risk factor that we see frequently is failing to mitigate mold properly. According to the CDC, the key factors to controlling mold is monitoring humidity levels, fixing leaky roofs & pipes, thoroughly cleaning and drying affected areas, and ventilating areas prone to moisture. [4] Again, per the CDC, “The best practice is to remove the mold and work to prevent future growth.”

We all loathe intrusions into our spaces. And it would be nice if things always had a quick and easy fix. Spraying a chemical is often part of the mold mitigation process, but rarely the only part of the process. Rarely will professional restoration companies recommend bleach as a suitable treatment for mold growth.

Picture this: It doesn’t make any sense to start cleaning up your yard after a storm if the winds and rains are still ongoing, right? Similarly, the restoration process needs to address risk factors to prevent environmental problems. If water intrusion is still occurring, there will be little any restoration professional can do until the source of moisture is stopped. Often times it will be necessary to coordinate with other contractors and professionals, like plumbers and roofers, to solve an environmental problem and fix potential sources of moisture.

Myth #2- “I don’t want to remove anything”

Finally, we come to the actual cleanup process itself.

Frequently, we are asked as restoration professionals to sign off on an environment where the wet and affected materials have not yet been removed. This goes against the recommendations and standards set by organizations like the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC). As long as moisture remains in an environment, mold will continue to be a problem. In addition, many materials, like insulation and drywall, may need to be removed to prevent further mold growth [5]. The bottom line is this: as long as materials that have reached peak saturation levels remain in an environment, the risk for future mold growth remains greatly elevated.

Mold in commercial buildings presents some specific risk factors that should be addressed as quickly and thoroughly as possible. While there is no easy-fix, there is a team of professionals at SERVPRO of Boise ready to help your commercial building recover with minimal hassle and headaches. In the Treasure Valley and the surrounding Idaho area. 

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