Removing Black Mold

I have found myself removing black mold infestation in many different types of situations while performing rental property "make ready's", and general remodeling. Some very bad, while others are at the very beginning stages of infestation.

Most, however, are of the small type of infestation. By that, I mean you might see a couple of mold spores about the size of a quarter developing on the wall or ceiling.

What Exactly Is Black Mold?

Basically, mold is a fungus that can proliferate in a damp, dark area, and spread rather quickly. According to one expert:

"Mold spores are very small in size and can easily enter the human body by breathing [nose and mouth], eating mold spores [often IN food and landing ON food], drinking mold infested water, entry through one's eyes, and entry through open skin cuts and sores." - The Mold Inspector

Wow. Sounds pretty cold and clinical, doesn't it?

What he is saying, is that mold comes in many different types and is generally air-borne. So, people are going to come in contact with some form or another of mold every day. But for the most part, this is usually at very low levels. It's when you get to the office or home place that problems could arise, due to inadequacies regarding the structure and on-going maintenance of the building (or dwelling) your in at the present time.

You see, the problem associated with mold is not what you can see on the outside of a wall, ceiling, or even woodwork. It's what you cannot see, such as inside the wall cavity itself, above ceilings, inside air ducts, or even behind woodwork.

Mold can grow and thrive within most any environment, and does not require much in the way of "help" from human beings. Poor ventilation in most cases is the cause of mold. Especially in and around rooms wherever moisture happens to accumulate, such as the kitchen and bathroom areas. Another area is the laundry room where duct work (to exhaust warm air out of dryer) may be defective or damaged. The point here being is that wherever moisture can be, the possibility of mold development can be as well.

Symptoms of Black Mold Poisoning

Many of the symptoms related to toxic black mold are simply too numerous to mention. Some of the most recognizable, however, would be the following:

  • Allergy-type symptoms
  • Blood pressure irregularities
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Dark urine
  • Diarrhea
  • Dizziness
  • Fever
  • Excessive itching around the eyes, nose, mouth, skin
  • Metallic taste in mouth
  • Nose Bleeds
  • Puffy, droopy eyes
  • Ringing in the ears
  • Chronic sinusitis

A severe case of toxic black mold poisoning can be very dangerous and would need medical attention immediately. If you live in an apartment (or house), or know of someone who might live in a place with mold, seek to have a specialist remove black mold infestation before it can take root.

Where to Look For Black Mold

The following areas should be inspected (wherever, and in whatever dwelling you call home), for possible mold contamination:

  • Crawlspaces
  • Airducts
  • Basements
  • Kitchen and bathrooms
  • Leaks from around windows and doors
  • Around bathtubs and shower surrounds
  • Underneath bathroom and kitchen sinks
  • Clothes dryer venting into walls or attic
  • Build-up from landscaping against exterior walls
  • Exhaust fans venting into walls or attic space
  • Leaks from defective exterior siding and guttering

There are probably a lot more, but these are the areas that come to mind when I inspect for black mold contamination.

Removing Black Mold

The most effective way of getting rid of mold, is to simply cut out the infected wallspace (drywall), and replace with a new drywall section.

Now, I know that might seem a bit drastic (and costly) for many people, but it really is the most effective method to completely eradicate any trace of mold.

This is precisely what was done (pictured) in a recent rental unit mold remediation. As you can see, the black mold had already taken root long ago, as there is evidence of old infestation, along with more recent (new) mold growth behind a bathroom vanity wall.

The solution for removing black mold, was to take the vanity out, demo the wall itself, replace the old drywall with new, reseal and paint, and reinstall vanity.

The whole process took about two hours to do, spread out over two days, with a cost of about $20 for materials. The cause of the mold in the first place, was a defective overhead exhaust fan. That was replaced as well.

This bathroom should now be in good shape.

How To Clean Mold

If you don't want to go to that much trouble, you can try cleaning it off. But you should be careful with some of the old ways of cleaning off black mold.

The Myth Surrounding Chlorine-Bleach-and-Water Remedy

For years, one of the popular remedies in removing black mold is the notion that ordinary bleach and water will effectively kill mold for good. The problem with this remedy, however, is that it does not work!

Why is that?

Well, let's look at some reason's why:

  • Chlorine bleach is too diluted to effectively kill mold unless the mold is sitting on top of a hard surface such as a kitchen counter top.

  • The components that make up chlorine bleach basically prevents it from penetrating deep into porous materials such as drywall and wood. It just sits on the surface.

Mold, however, has protected enzyme roots that grow deep inside the porous materials. So, when you apply the chlorine bleach-mixed-with-water solution to the porous surface, the only thing penetrating into the material is water, while the chlorine remains on the surface, and basically evaporates into the air. This results in partially treated black mold remediation. In other words, the black mold will eventually come back.

It may look for a time that the mold was effectively killed off, but you'll notice that the hard-to-kill mold eventually reappears.

For removing black mold infestation, don't go the standard "bleach and water" route. I recommend you visit The Mold Inspectorfor a great home remedy that will permanently kill black mold fungi spores wherever you need it eradicated.

In fact, this site is a gold mine of information for everything related to removing black mold, or any other kind of mold for that matter. He's got information on mold detection, health-related articles, and so much stuff, that I couldn't begin to list them here. It's simply the best site I've seen related to the topic of black mold remediation. I follow his advice, and I've always had great success.

I won't divulge the home remedy to you because he charges a proprietary fee for it's use. It's only $15.00, but definitely well worth the money.


TOP of Removing Black Mold

HOME to The House Painting Guru