Black Mold In The Crawl Space- Oh NO!
Mold and mildew is a common problem in many crawlspaces. Black mold can also be found growing in many moisture or damp areas of your home such as the bathroom, kitchen, basement or attic. This type of mold is usually more toxic than regular mold and is definitely something that needs to be taken care of as soon as possible. Black mold is a damaging fungus which can cause serious problems in any room where it shows up. They can bring numerous negative effects to health and to the house or building structure itself. Learn how to remove black mold and keep your home safe. Here are some tips you can easily follow at home
Eliminate Moisture – Black mold thrives in dark, moist areas such as your crawl space. Since you can’t eliminate darkness in your home, stopping the moisture is the first step in fighting mold. This will not only prevent future mold but also help ensure the existing mold won’t be coming back. The moisture could be from a leaky pipe, a crack in the foundation of your home or even just from being in an area with high humidity.
Quarantine the Area – Mold can be dangerous, and it spreads easily so before you start the cleaning make sure to quarantine the area properly. Use thick plastic sheets to seal off all vents, doors, windows and any other openings. Seal the plastic with duct tape to ensure no mold spores can escape. This is a critical step to be done properly or you may be fighting mold in other areas of your home as well.
Clean Mold with Soap – When you’ve found the visible mold get a strong soap which is safe for the area it is on (typically wood, brick or metal). If the mold is dry it will become airborne quickly so spray it first with a light misting of water to prevent this. Scrub the area with a sponge, rinsing it frequently, until all the visible mold has been removed.
Disinfect the Area – Clean the area again with a strong disinfectant to kill any remaining mold spores. You should clean the entire area that was affected visibly as well as the entire surrounding area. Even if you can’t see the mold spores, they might be there so it is better to clean a large surrounding area now so you can be sure it won’t come back again.
Finish Cleaning – Once you’ve completed this process take all the sponges, plastic sheeting, duct tape and anything else that was exposed to the mold and carefully place it into a heavy duty plastic garbage bag. To prevent any spores from spreading make sure to try to fold the plastic with the side that was facing the infected room going inside trapping all the spores. Place the sponge and other items in the middle if possible. Once everything is in the garbage bag seal it tightly and bring it out of the home through the most direct way possible. Remember, the clothes you were wearing will have spores on them so change your clothes and shower before going through the home. Wash your clothes in hot water with a strong detergent.
Let’s Fix The Problem! Let’s talk about your crawl space- as it is a very common place for mold to show up uninvited! The key is to put down a heavy duty vapor barrier that can block the moisture from getting past it! There are companies out there that will do the work for you. Just make sure that the crawl space liner comes with a document that insures it is a vapor barrier that is intended to block the moisture from coming up. Now you are on your way to having a nice clean crawl space!