How much should we worry about mold presence at home? Who is most at risk? How to prevent mold in hurricane season or get rid of it? Continue reading this blog, and we’ll answer all these questions and more!
Mold in hurricane season is a common enemy among homeowners and renters. Among its consequences are water damage and material impairment to objects and the structure of the building itself. Ruined walls and floors, infested alcoves, and mold-ringed windows… just to name a few of the situations you may encounter when you return home after a hurricane.
If you’ve lived where natural disasters are common, you probably understand what we are talking about.
However, some people do not realize that mold exposure can also cause severe damage to health.
Mold is one of the most severe results of water damage from a hurricane and one of the most devastating long-term costs of America’s climate.
Heavy rains, floods, and hurricanes are three key players in the spread of mold in homes and buildings. Mold can grow within 24 to 48 hours after water damage and continue until you take action.
What is mold?
Mold is a fungus that is very likely to appear in areas of a home exposed to water or excessive humidity. You can recognize mold by sights, such as wall or ceiling discoloration, bad odor, or musty smell.
Hurricane season is filled with storms and floods, so to ensure your place is safe and sound or, in this case: safe and DRY, call Environmental Testing Agency! We can help you get rid of mold in hurricane season.
Growing mold in hurricane season
Growing mold requires warmth, an organic food source, and moisture. So there is always the potential for it to grow in hot, humid regions like Florida, even without a hurricane. But during a storm, the perfect formula for disaster is generated: heavy rains, damaging winds, high coastal waters, power-offs, and flooding. With that much water and humidity, you can bet mold will flourish.
Wherever water intrudes a space and becomes trapped, mold is apt to develop. As long as moisture remains unaddressed in the dark, mold growth is inevitable. Without proper remediation, it will continue to thrive and multiply, damaging everything in its path in the next few hours. So, if you don’t act right away, the mold will cover everything.
In states like Florida, hurricanes are a common issue. In fact, in the last few months, some of the most powerful storms in the recent history of the United States have occurred.
When preparing for a storm, mold isn’t usually the first emergency issue people think. Still, prevention could save you thousands of dollars down the line.
Luckily, there are several things you can do to prepare your home for a hurricane that can help prevent water intrusion and mold growth.
But before moving on to how to prevent these fungi, it’s essential to know how it grows and why it’s particularly important to take care of mold in hurricane season.
How Water Infiltrates Buildings
During a hurricane, interior damage to a building starts with water infiltrating from the outside in several ways. Broken windows, holes in the walls and leaks are just a few examples.
When excess indoor moisture is left unaddressed, it can turn into mold. It only takes 48 hours after water infiltrates a home for mold to develop.
In terms of its appearance, colors range from black to green to orange.
Upon noticing any mold growing in their homes, people should immediately contact a restoration company that offers mold remediation.
Suppose you suffered the dampness consequences of a hurricane. In that case, ETA is one of the air quality and mold inspection companies most chosen by Florida homeowners. Count on us to restore your home and ensure that the air you and your family breathe is the cleanest and healthiest possible.
What are the dangers of having mold at home?
As we said, mold will grow and multiply whenever sufficient moisture, humidity, and organic material are present. Its growth can damage furniture and other possessions, and unchecked growth with time can cause severe damage to the structural elements in any home or building.
But the most important thing is that mold contains toxic substances that, when inhaled, can be very harmful to your health and your family.
Who is most at risk of mold exposure?
The truth is, we’re all susceptible to the health risks of mold. Breathing in a certain level of mold spores can negatively affect anyone.
Mold is not something to be taken lightly. It can lead to serious health issues if not appropriately addressed by an expert.
By inhaling mold particles, no one is safe from being in contact with toxic chemicals dangerous to health. Still, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) indicates a particular risk to some of the following groups:
-Immunocompromised people and those with chronic lung illnesses;
-People living with Asthma;
-People with preexisting respiratory conditions;
-Pregnant women and children;
-People with weakened immune systems;
-People who have had transplant surgery.
Prevent mold damage
Now that you know that mold in hurricane season growth is almost inevitable, it’s a good idea to take measures to prevent damage as much as possible.
Some things you can do are:
-Watch out for roof leaks: Among different protection precautions, you must start drying as quickly as possible. Find the supply of the roof leak and repair it.
-Ensure that you’ve accomplished everything to keep water from entering rooms. Remember to close all windows!
-Fix everything that permits water inside, such as damaged windowpanes and improperly closing doors.
-Check for dehumidifiers, fans, and all devices that allow you to keep excess moisture from building up inside the home.
What To Do During The Hurricane Season?
If you decide to stay at home during the hurricane, here are a few things you can do to protect yourself:
-Continuously check for any surprising leaks. If you find something, immediately stop the water from pushing into the building.
-If you lose power, get rid of anything that could get wet. If the power is still on, turn on the fans and dehumidifiers to prevent moisture from building up in your home.
-Remove any standing water. If you have no power, use a brush and plastic buckets.
-Check for water entry in these areas: bulkheads, wall tops, stairways, doors, and windows.
Mold control after storm
The hurricane is over: the worst has passed. Now what?
Here are some emergency tips that can save your home and keep you and your family healthy if you notice signs of mold after the storm:
–Avoid the affected area: When you return to your home after a hurricane or if you’ve stayed home, it’s important not to go near the affected area. Mold exposure is dangerous, especially for children under 12, as The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warns.
In the same way, people with breathing issues or weak immune systems should not enter a building infested with mold. Inhaling the spores can also cause respiratory problems and lung infections, so it’s better to carefully enter with an N95 mask even if you’re healthy.
-Don’t try to fix it yourself. It can be dangerous.
-Don’t remove any moldy items from the affected area: It’s crucial not to touch anything.
-Don’t open the windows immediately after you’ve returned. Again, the humidity of the fresh air will help cause excessive mold growth.
-Find an excellent mold remediation company!
At Environmental Testing Agency, the customer’s needs are of our utmost importance.
If you notice signs of mold in hurricane season or water damage at home after the storm, you should call us. We ensure that the air you breathe in your home is the cleanest and healthiest possible, and we can help you get rid of mold in hurricane season.
Don’t let hurricane season mold grow in your home. ETA is one call away; contact us!