Mold Frequently Asked Questions
Is mold damage covered by insurance?
Some insurance carriers cover mold cleanup. Many have a limitation in the amount they will pay as well as the covered causes. It is very important to review your insurance policy before calling in a claim.
How long does it take for mold to begin to grow after a water damage that is not properly dried?
When water damage occurs, it typically takes 48 hours for mold to begin to grow. Mold exists in all environments, even the home, at relatively normal levels. Once water damage occurs, many of the environmental needs for mold growth exist. In the wall cavity, microbial growth is more prolific. This means that while you might save your deductible when cleaning up water damage yourself, you could cost yourself more in the long run in damage from improper drying. Even having a mold remediation company perform a moisture evaluation after yourself drying is better than not knowing.
I have a small patch of mold growth that does not seem to be growing to a larger area. Do I have to have a full-blown remediation?
Most organizations and the EPA define a small area of mold growth as ten square feet. This typically does not require a mold remediation and can be easily cleaned up. However, it is always wise to have a visual inspection and moisture check by a mold remediation company.
Can I clean the mold in my house by myself?
Of course, anyone can attempt to clean mold in the home themselves. The question is whether it can be done properly. One of the important considerations is cross contamination. For example, if you have an area of effected drywall that must be removed, you could spread invisible mold spores into areas of your home that were not effected by disturbing the spores. Proper containment eliminates this problem. Further, while removing mold damage areas even with containment, you might neglect to ensure proper drying such as dehumidification. Proper drying ensures that the original conditions that proliferated the mold growth is managed in way that prevents further mold growth. Lastly, there are health hazards related to mold spore that get into the air. Proper personal protection equipment is important. When it comes to mold, it is much better to trust the professionals.
Is it necessary to have mold testing done?
There are two types of testing: pretesting and post testing. In certain circumstances, we recommend pretesting. However, our technicians are trained in inspection. This means that we can save you that cost. We feel that post testing is necessary for many reasons. Primarily, it ensures us and our clients that the mold remediation was thorough. This is important for the safety and health of our clients. Further, a third party testing agency gives an added layer of liability insurance to the project. As a side note, we recommend that any testing is done by an Industrial Hygienist rather than a small testing agency with regional certifications. An Industrial Hygienist has a degree in microbiology. Therefore, you have the experience and intense knowledge to back you up.
Can anyone guarantee the mold not come back?
Guarantee of mold not returning is impossible. You can have liability insurance to protect you if you choose a company with mold specific liability insurance. However, the only thing that can be guaranteed is that the area is structurally dry and the mold levels are brought down to normal. It is the client’s job as a homeowner to ensure that whatever caused the problem to begin with has been corrected prior to remediation efforts.
What are the qualifications that I should look for in a mold cleanup company or mold remediation company?
At a minimum, a mold remediation company should have technicians that are either certified by the IICRC and the ACAC or are trained by supervisory personnel certified by those organizations. In addition, any company you choose should have liability insurance that is specific to mold remediation. This can easily be checked by a simply phone call to the insurance agent on the Certificate of Liability.
What are the qualifications that I should look for in a mold testing company?
We recommend Industrial Hygienists.
Is there state licensing or regulations for mold?
Currently, there are no Alaska state licensing requirements or regulations for mold remediation.