Spring Cleaning & Mold Removal

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Spring Cleaning & Mold Removal

Spring is here! It is the time of year we all look forward to, after several months of cold, gray and dreary weather. With the season typically comes spring cleaning for most people. They want a clean, fresh start and people are productive in tidying and fixing things up around their home. While spring cleaning, you may move some boxes or a piece of furniture that has not been moved in some time and you may find mold. In addition, with the weather warming up, snow melting and the rainy season, water can leak into your basement causing mold growth. Make sure to check your basement regularly throughout the spring for mold. If you do encounter mold, here are some tips that you can follow:

Cleaning the Mold Properly

Mold remediation has several steps and is a complicated process that is best handled by a professional. If you attempt to clean it yourself, you will put yourself in danger by not wearing the proper equipment. Also, you can exacerbate the problem by scrubbing the mold spores which will allow for them to go airborne. Once the spores go airborne they can spread throughout other areas of your home. Therefore, causing your once isolated issue to spread to other rooms in your home creating a much larger issue. As opposed to handling it yourself, make sure to contact a licensed mold remediation professional. 

Borax to Clean Mold

We do not recommend for customers to clean mold themselves, unless cleaning it from an item such as clothing or a non-porous item. For areas, inside of your home greater than 10 square feet, make sure to contact a professional to handle this for you. New York State requires for any home with more than 10 square feet for it to be taken care of by a NYS licensed mold remediation contractor. It is imperative to not only remove the mold properly, but also rectify the moisture problem. Also, a professional can make sure the proper containment is set up to ensure that the mold spores do not spread to other areas of the home.

In order to make the cleaning solution mix together 1 cup of “20 Mule Team Borax” with 1 gallon of hot water. Borax can be purchased at most local grocery stores in the laundry/detergent section. Once you have mixed together your solution, apply the borax solution to the area with mold. Do not apply the solution to a porous material, such as drywall. These types of surfaces are porous and absorb water easily, this will only exacerbate the mold problem by keeping the area moist. After you apply the solution, scrub the area with a rag or a wire brush until the mold is gone. Wipe the area off and make sure it dries thoroughly. You can repeat the application of the solution and lightly rinse it as well, however it does not need to be completely rinsed. Borax prevents new mold from growing so it does not need to be fully rinsed away. Once this is complete, run either a dehumidifier or a fan to dry out the area within 24-48 hours. 

Please keep in mind this is only for items that are non-porous or for clothing. This solution is not recommended for large areas inside of your home. If the moisture problem inside of your home is not resolved, in addition to the mold being removed properly, then it is bound to return. This spring cleaning, you can be proactive when it comes to mold. By finding it early on it can prevent further damage and is less costly to you as the homeowner. Get your mold taken care of, so you can have a fresh mold-free start this upcoming spring. 

What to Beware of When Finding a Mold Professional

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What to Beware of When Finding a Mold Professional

Your home is your investment. Chances are, when you choose the cheapest estimate or the “best offer”, you may be getting a lower quality of work. As the saying goes, “You get what you paid for.” Checking online reviews on Angie’s List, the BBB, and talking to previous customers are great places to start.

  • Beware of scare tactics. Saying things like; “You Have A Big Problem Here!”  or “Your home isn't safe or healthy to be in.” before they've even done a thorough visual inspection or tested for mold.
  • Beware if they discourage you from getting a second or third opinion.
  • Beware of hand-written estimates, invoices or contracts.
  • Beware of a contractor that won’t provide references. Be sure to ask for references from previous customers who have had similar work performed. You should also check with your local Better Business Bureau for the company’s rating and possible complaints. 
  • Beware of mold removal companies that only take care of the mold. The quote may be cheaper upfront, but if the moisture issue isn’t resolved, you may face a more severe problem down the road. Comprehensive Mold Management does all of the work start to finish. We take care of the moisture issue, remove the mold, and complete any other necessary work that is required.
  • Beware of cheaper quotes that do not include a warranty. Our work may not be the cheapest, but we do the work correctly. We follow industry standard protocol, so any work we complete is covered with a lifetime warranty*. 
  • Beware of companies that do not follow the proper standards or protocol, having a need for less materials. Comprehensive Mold Management is fully ensured, a NYS licensed mold remediation contractor and CMM always uses the best materials available. We use the highest quality materials available to insure the job is done correctly. 

Top Mistakes to Avoid When Cleaning Mold

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Top Mistakes to Avoid When Cleaning Mold

We are all subject to making mistakes. However, if possible we try and learn from the mistakes of others to prevent from making them ourselves. Some homeowners when they first find out that they have a mold problem, may try to take the endeavor into their own hands and may want to attempt a Do It Your (DIY) project to save money. However, attempting to remove the mold yourself could make the problem worse and cause potential health hazards. Here are some of the most common mistakes to avoid when attempting to clean mold yourself.


DO NOT USE BLEACH
There is a widely-believed myth that bleach kills mold. We get so many customers inquiring about why this treatment didn't work and their mold came back hardier than it was before. Bleach will change the color of your mold to a clear and/or white color, as it would your clothing. Unfortunately, all you have done is to create a biosphere for the mold to grow in and you may have possibly ingested the bleach fumes & airborne mold spores (never healthy). Usually, within three to four months, the mold will return and do so with a vengeance.

The only cleanser that Comprehensive Mold Management recommends is Borax. For the cleaning solution mix, together 1 cup of “20 Mule Team Borax” with 1 gallon of hot water. Borax can be purchased at most local grocery stores in the laundry/detergent section. Once you have mixed together your solution, apply the borax solution to the area with mold. Do not apply the solution to a porous material, such as drywall. These types of surfaces are porous and absorb water easily, this will only exacerbate the mold problem by keeping the area moist. After you apply the solution, scrub the area with a rag or a wire brush until the mold is gone. Wipe the area off and make sure it dries thoroughly. You can repeat the application of the solution and lightly rinse it as well, however it does not need to be completely rinsed. Borax prevents new mold from growing so it does not need to be fully rinsed away. Once this is complete, run either a dehumidifier or a fan to dry out the area within 24-48 hours. 

Mold Resistant Paints
Some people may think a quick fix for mold would be applying a mold resistant paint over the mold, however this is not the solution. Although, it may look better temporarily, the problem was never resolved and down the road the mold issue could be even harder to resolve. The mold can continue to grow underneath the coat of paint and sooner or later will make itself visible again. In addition, any health symptoms you may have been having will still occur, seeing as the mold is still there. A mold proof coating or resistant paint should only be used once the surface has been cleaned properly and the moisture issue rectified to ensure that the mold growth will not return.

Make Sure to Get It All
A mistake that is often made by DIYers is that there is no way for them to know if they completely got rid of the mold. In addition, the root of the moisture problem may have not been resolved, which would mean that it is inevitable that the mold will return. Mold spores are so small and can spread easily, therefore while cleaning if the proper containment was not set up then it can spread to another area of your home. 

Improperly Cleaning Materials with Mold
Removing mold from non-porous items such as metal, tile or glass can be handled by homeowners in some situations when it is a smaller amount of mold. We would recommend using the cleaning solution described above. However, for porous materials such as wood, carpeting, drywall or insulation that is best handled by a mold professional. Mold professionals can clean most items, however in certain circumstances it is recommended to dispose the item all together. 

Mold Cross Contamination & Proper Attire
A mistake that is often made by homeowners attempting to clean mold is that they are unaware that they need to set up the proper containment to prevent the mold spores from spreading to other areas of the home. Once you begin scrubbing or wiping off the mold, the spores will become airborne and can contaminate other rooms throughout your house. The proper containment and negative air need to be set up, as well as materials disposed properly to ensure that your mold problem will not spread. Professionals have their crew members wear protective cover all suits and are fit for a high-grade respirator. Purchasing a paint suit and dust mask from the hardware store is not enough nor is it the proper protection.


Overall, when it comes to mold it is best left to the professionals. New York State requires for any area of mold more than 10 square feet to be removed by a licensed mold remediation contractor. It is worth the investment to have the mold removed properly to ensure the integrity of your home and your family’s health. If you are concerned you may have mold growth in your home call Comprehensive Mold Management today at 585-235-6182.