But how bad does a flood have to be to generate mold? And how can you tell if mold is a problem? Is detection the same for every structure?
Below, the expert technicians at Professional Restoration answer these questions and more.
Post Flood Mold Detection
Mold can be obvious or hidden from view. Even after cleanup and mitigation steps, mold growth may occur.
Remain vigilant in your detection efforts. Your eyes and nose are the best tools for the job. Keep a look out for mold along baseboards, inside cabinets, and under flooring.
Mold can be obvious, but it can also hide in hard to reach places or tight spots behind heavy furniture or stationary objects. Inspect these areas after a flood, even after the property is clean and dry.
The first sign of a mold is sometimes an odor. Mold produces gases (microbial volatile organic compounds), which can smell musty, earthy, or damp. After a flood, surfaces, floors, and walls may appear clean and mold free, but even a small amount of residual moisture can spur mold growth.
Keep your nose to the grindstone (literally): regularly smell rooms affected by flood water and note any unusual odors. Catching mold early is an easy way to prevent a larger remediation project down the road.
Size Doesn’t Matter
Any amount of water can spur mold growth. After a flood, a better question to ask is: what steps have I taken (or not taken) to prevent mold?
Mold only needs a few things to proliferate: an organic food source, moisture, warmth, and oxygen.
A small drip behind a sink is just as likely to spur mold growth as a flood. While some floods result in irreversible water damage, the size of a flood isn’t necessarily the only determining factor: what’s more important is taking proper water mitigation steps.
Furthermore, regardless of the structure, mold doesn’t discriminate. Commercial buildings, garages, and retail shops are just as susceptible to mold as residential homes.
The technicians at Professional Restoration have experience with residential and commercial buildings alike. If you need help avoiding mold growth after water damage, give us a call at 303-922-4001.
Why It Matters
After a flood, you’ll want things back to normal as soon as possible—or back to business if it’s a commercial space. But don’t be too hasty.
Some people are extremely sensitive to mold including young children, individuals with chronic respiratory problems, or those with compromised immune systems.
In homes and commercial buildings, mold can cause a range of symptoms including nasal stuffiness, throat irritation, coughing or wheezing, eye irritation, and sometimes skin irritation.
Don’t chance these adverse health effects by rushing or avoiding cleaning up any water damage —a process that can take months to complete.
Contents and structural materials should be dry, cleaned, and sanitized before the property resumes normal use. And even then, it’s best to keep an eye (and a nose!) on potential problem areas.