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Inspiring Basement Remodeling Ideas After Water Damage

Although discovering a water-damaged basement can be stressful, it’s a great opportunity to remodel your space once the water removal and cleanup is finished. Over the years, we’ve been able to help with hundreds of water damage restoration and remodeling projects for home and business owners. Below, we compiled a list of tips for safely handling water damage, along with inspiring basement remodeling ideas once the water is removed.

Restoring a Basement After Water Damage

Before you can begin remodeling a flooded basement, there are several things to keep in mind. All standing water and moisture needs to be removed from the flooring, walls, and structural framing. To help you prepare for basement remodeling, our team will:

  • Find and repair the water damage source
  • Remove all water-damaged materials and standing water
  • Use specialist equipment to dry out flooring and framing
  • Test for mold growth
  • Add a vapor barrier to prevent moisture from seeping into walls
  • Restore areas that won’t be affected by basement remodeling
  • Bring in the most-trusted contractors in the area
  • Work with you to submit insurance claims

Basement Remodeling Ideas

Once all water removal and repairs are complete, it’s time to decide how you want to restore your basement. Whether you choose to perform basic restoration or a full-blown remodel, you can count on our team to see the job through with help from our extensive professional network. If you’re planning to remodel, look through the basements below for inspiration. This is a great opportunity to turn a waterlogged room into an entertainment space, office, or extra bedrooms.

Create a Comfortable Sitting Space

The Indiana couple responsible for this basement renovation credited their success to a lot of hard work and smart purchases. They were able to turn a bare-bones space into a clean, inviting room.

Images via This Old House

Build a Bedroom and Bathroom

This waterlogged basement had rotting stairs and a recurring flooding problem caused by gutter issues. To fix the water damage issues, this homeowner dug down 18 inches and installed a footing drain system that would redirect future water. He also added additional heating, cooling, and plumbing systems to support the additional bedroom and bathroom.

Images via HouseLogic

Make a Safe Space for Family

After discovering mold and termites in the basement, this family had to undergo mold remediation to make it a functional, safe room. Once the flooring, paneling, and mold was removed, they transformed the basement into a comfortable family recreation room with plenty of storage.

Images via This Old House

Remove Walls for an Open Layout

If you often have guests in town, turn your water-damaged basement into an extra bedroom, bathroom, and sitting area. This particular basement needed to be gutted before restoration could begin, but the final result is an enjoyable room that doesn’t reflect any previous signs of water damage.

Images via This Old House

Declutter for An Organized, Open Basement

We’re all guilty of solely using basements for storage, but when extensive water damage occurs, it forces families to get rid of many items they no longer use or need. In this basement remodel, there were a lot of unorganized items on the floor that could have been ruined by water. Now, the restored basement has more structure and less clutter.

Images via HGTV

Remove Moldy Flooring and Walls

Spending time in this basement before the remodel was unsafe due to mold on the walls and carpeting. The homeowners wanted to turn it into a space for entertaining guests, so it was gutted and cleaned before restoration began. The final result is a safe, healthy basement for the family to relax without worry of hazardous mold or water damage.

Images via DIY Network

Help with Basement Water Damage Restoration

If you’ve discovered water damage in your basement, let us help you get ready for a beautiful remodel. We’ll remove any water and moisture, repair damage, check for mold, and prepare you for basement remodeling.

We Service the Following Locations:

Colorado cities of Fort Collins, Loveland and Greeley, call us at (970) 581-4498.

Wyoming cities of Laramie and Cheyenne, call us at (970) 581-4498.

Albuquerque, New Mexico, call us at (505) 250-6500.

Best Flooring During a Water Disaster

When choosing flooring, most people consider aesthetic, room location, daily use, and how easy it is to clean. However, many don’t weigh which flooring holds up best to water damage and mold growth. With years of experience in water damage and mold restoration, we’re comparing tile, carpet, and hardwood to share which is the right pick for your home.

Which Flooring is More Mold-Prone?

While mold grows best on porous surfaces, it can develop on nearly any surface with the right amount of moisture and light. By a quick glance, carpet and hardwood floors tend to be the most mold-prone because both absorb humidity and excessive amounts of water. However, tile can develop mold if exposed to high levels of humidity without proper ventilation (think, bathrooms, kitchens, and basements). To determine which flooring is best for handling water damage and preventing mold, discover the pros and cons of each below.

Person holding a magnifying glass inspecting room for water damage or mold.

Person holding a magnifying glass inspecting room for water damage or mold.

Water Damage and Mold on Carpet

Due to the plush nature of carpet flooring, it may seems like the worst pick when dealing with mold or water damage issues. While carpet is the most absorbent, it’s also the easiest to remove and replace. Typically, carpet is held down by tacks placed along the perimeter of a room. When water damage occurs in a carpeted room, you can easily pull the carpet and padding away from the tacks, roll it up, and remove it. Then, you have access to the subfloor and can eliminate remaining moisture.

A large part of how carpet flooring holds up to water damage or mold depends on the pile and type of fabric. Below, we look at the most commons types of carpet to see the benefits and downfalls.

  • Nylon carpet is the most popular since it’s durable and resilient in heavy traffic areas. However, this type is known to absorb spills and stain easily, so some variations offer a stain-resistant treatment.
  • Olefin is a great pick for outdoor and basement carpet because it’s tougher and shorter than nylon. It’s known for being resistant to moisture, mold, and mildew. The downside is it’s not as comfortable to walk on.
  • Acrylic carpet is an inexpensive substitute for wool, but is not commonly available.
  • Wool is the only natural fiber used in carpeting, making it an expensive, yet eco-friendly, option. It’s naturally durable and stain-resistant, but may not feel as soft as fabricated carpeting.

Although some of the above options have stain-resistant properties, mold can grow underneath any type of carpet and padding. After water damage on carpet, look for warning signs of mold such as discoloration, musty smells, or a damp surface. Carpet can create the dark, moist environment mold needs to flourish. But by properly ventilating a room, removing wet carpet and padding, and drying the subfloor, you can prevent mold and repair water damage.

Fan drying out carpet padding, framing, and subfloor after flooding.

Fan drying out carpet padding, framing, and subfloor after flooding.

Mold and Water Damage on Tile Floor

Tile is incredibly common for rooms experiencing high fluctuations in humidity, such as kitchens, basements, and bathroom floors. Both vinyl and ceramic tile absorb miniscule amounts of moisture, and are easy to clean if mold is discovered. However, water can sneak into tile floor if the seals and grout are damaged. Think of the seals around your bathtub or shower—are there cracks or gaps? Since this flooring is constantly exposed to excessive moisture, it needs to be properly maintained to prevent mold. Below, we look at the two most popular types of tile.

Ceramic vs. Vinyl Tile

Ceramic Tile – Notoriously, ceramic tile is known for it’s durability and water resistance. Once you install ceramic tile, it will likely last for decades with minor touch-ups. While this tile is low-maintenance, it’s incredibly difficult to repair and replace if extensive water damage occurs.

If a room with ceramic tile flooring experiences water damage or flooding, water can seep into the subfloor if there are cracks in the grout. When this occurs, the water needs to be completely removed to prevent mold growth. The best chance of saving the tile and avoiding costly repairs is to call a water extraction expert. Ceramic tile is difficult to remove without damaging the pieces, but with speciality drying equipment, professionals can try to salvage your floor. Luckily, tile is amazingly impervious to water and grout is easy to reseal. Yet, if you don’t maintain or dry tile, mold can form in the cracks of grout.

Vinyl Tile – Increasing in popularity, vinyl tile is easier to replace than ceramic tile. Almost all variations are extremely water-resistant, and will only absorb water if there are gaps in the planks.

Even with the best installations, gaps will occur somewhere throughout a room. But unless there is excessive water damage, vinyl tile flooring is good at stopping water from seeping down to the subfloor. Unfortunately, DIY installations often always have a gap. Unlike ceramic tile, vinyl is simple to remove and restore. Sections can be removed with a sharp cutting tool, but repairing the floor requires you to completely remove and replace the planks.

Mold growing in the cracks of bathroom tile.

Mold growing in the cracks of bathroom tile.

 

Water Damage and Mold on Hardwood Floor

Easy to maintain but expensive to replace, hardwood floors are extremely susceptible to water damage. Wood is naturally absorbent and sensitive to humidity fluctuations. Since it expands and contracts to reflect moisture levels, it’s common for gaps to form between hardwood boards. Hardwood floors require humidity range between 35-55%—too little moisture causes boards to dry out, while too much moisture results in swelling. While this is great for ventilating your subfloor, it can be catastrophic when flooding or water damage hits.

Small spills on hardwood floors are easy to clean and dry, but a burst pipe, broken water line, or flood requires professional repair to save the floor. If treated immediately, specialized fans can remove water from the boards and subfloor before buckling occurs. These fans also remove moisture to prevent mold growth. If water damage isn’t handled within 48 hours, you’ll likely experience damage from buckling and the beginning stages of mold growth. The upside of hardwood floors is that it’s relatively easy to pull individual boards up and remove just a small section of the floor.

High-powered fans drying a kitchen's hardwood flooring after water damage.

High-powered fans drying a kitchen hardwood floor after water damage.

 

Solid Hardwood vs. Engineered Wood

Solid Hardwood — This flooring is very sensitive to moisture and changes size during winter and summer months. Commonly, this fluctuation leaves gaps between boards and increases the risk of extensive water damage.

Engineered Wood — Engineered wood flooring is more resistant to moisture, since it’s made up of several layers of compressed wood. This means the floor is less likely to absorb moisture because there is a layer of glue and between the hardwood top and the rest of the board. While the planks tend to fit together better (decreasing gaps), engineered wood can still absorb and retain water.

With both types of wood flooring, regular maintenance and wax can increase the strength of your floor. If you have a solid hardwood floor, look to a professional company if you experience water damage to save money and make sure all moisture is removed.

How to Choose Between Carpet, Tile & Hardwood

After debating the advantages and disadvantages of each floor, there are still a number of factors to consider before picking the best for your home. Think about the room, the daily traffic on each floor, the humidity levels, the cost and maintenance, your family, and your location. If flooding, heavy rain, hurricanes, or other natural disasters are common in your area, you may want a floor that’s more resistant to water damage and mold. If you’re located in any of our service areas, give us a call after water damage so we can help save your floor and your peace of mind.

Interested in more home tips? We put together a top home maintenance checklist to help you keep your home happy and your family safe!

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We service the following locations:

Colorado cities of Fort Collins, Loveland and Greeley, call us at 970-581-4498.

Wyoming cities of Laramie and Cheyenne, call us at 970-581-4498.

Albuquerque, New Mexico, call us at 505-250-6500.

What to Know Before Buying or Renting a Home

Before renting or buying a home, you can avoid disastrous damage, expensive repairs, and unsafe conditions with a walk-through. As water damage and mold experts, we’re sharing tips to help you notice warning signs and understand the condition of your potential home before signing on the line.

What to Look for During a Home Walk-Through

While it’s easy to search for and fall in love with a home online, seeing it in-person is incredibly important. Not only can you get a better feel for the house, but you can check the exterior and interior for recent upgrades, potential risks, and regular maintenance. To help you properly assess a house during the walk-through, keep an eye out for the following areas before buying or renting a home.

Exterior Home Checks

Foundation

As you walk around the outside of the home, look for signs of a damaged or sagging foundation. Check for cracks in the concrete slabs or brick, trees growing too near the foundation, signs of sloping walls, or separation between windows and doors. To understand how much this repair can affect you, see the average foundation repair costs as outlined by HomeAdvisor below:

2017 national average cost to repair a foundation

Property

When inspecting a home, it’s common to forget about the property it sits on. However, improperly designed landscaping and natural water features are a major contributor to flooded basements and water damage in homes. While you inspect the outdoor area, make note of low-lying areas, drainage, landscaping, sprinkler systems, pools, or ponds. Inquire about past property water issues or recent updates to the drainage and irrigation systems.

Check the property for signs of faulty systems

Roof & Gutters

Replacing or repairing a damaged roof is one of the most expensive upgrades for homeowners. Depending on the size of the home and severity of the roof damage, you may wind up paying to replace the roof and fix underlying water damage.

Research by Angie’s List shows roofing repairs can cost between $5,000–$25,000, with an average cost of $12,000. During your home walk-through, check the roof for missing shingles, discolored areas from water damage, missing gutters, and cracked surfaces. Also, ask when the roof was last replaced.

Related: 10 Warning Signs Your Roof Is Damaged

Surface

Similar to checking interior paint and walls, inspecting a home’s exterior surfaces can tell you a lot about how it has been maintained. Check for cracked or missing boards, mold growth in shadowed corners or near the base, hanging electrical wires, and fresh paint. Oftentimes, warning signs of mold on the exterior may indicate more extensive problems within the home.

Surrounding Neighborhood

As you inspect the exterior of the home, remember to take a look around and notice the condition of other houses in the area and the streets. Does the house sit on a cul-de-sac or is it off of a busy street? If you have kids (or are planning to in the future), consider the local school system, nearby parks, and whether the area is family-friendly. Besides the quality of the property or rental home, there are many other factors to think of when deciding what’s best for you or your family.

Warning signs of mold and water leaks

Interior Home Checks

Attic

If you’re looking to buy or rent a house and wondering if it has roof damage, the attic usually shows tell-tale signs of accompanying water damage. While attics are not typically shown during a walk-through, this is a key place to check for warning signs of mold and water leaks. As you look around the attic, note any water spots, excessive condensation, improper ventilation, or discolored areas. If the HVAC system is stored in the attic, make sure there are no leaks underneath the machines.

Walls & Windows

Just as you you inspect the exterior windows and walls, take time to scan them in the interior. Notice shifts or sloping in walls, uneven window wells, bubbling paint (due to water damage), cracks, and patches of paint. Although it can be difficult to learn how to spot water damage in rental homes, these signs give you clues and can prompt questions about the home’s history.

Walls and windows water damage

Basement & Crawl Spaces

As the underbelly of every home, the basement is often overlooked in walk-throughs (especially if it’s unfinished). Luckily, this is the perfect time to check for warning signs of mold. As you walk down to the basement, pay attention to any dampness, musty smells, moist flooring, or exposed insulation. If the home has a crawl space, it’s best to leave the assessment to a crawl space inspection professional. However, you can ask questions about the home’s history with flooding, mold, or other water damage.

Plumbing

Well-maintained plumbing is key when looking to rent or buy a home. Don’t be afraid to look under sinks for signs of water leaks, check toilets for noises or malfunctions, inquire about sewer system maintenance, and check showers/bathtubs for cracks, broken tiles, mold or buckling paint.

Heating/Cooling

Every home has a different setup for its heating and cooling systems, and the walk-through is a good time to learn more about them. Ask how the systems have been maintained and when they were installed. Additionally, check for excessive condensation, broken seals, or signs of water damage around the systems.

Working with your inspector

Working with Your Inspector

After walking through the house, create a list of questions or concerns to share with your inspector. If possible, be at the home inspection so he/she can answer questions and address your concerns. If you only get an inspection report back, make sure it’s comprehensive and covers all of your questions.

Combining Information to Make a Final Decision

Whether upgrading from an apartment or transitioning from another house, make sure to get a comprehensive inspection before deciding to buy or rent a home. If you do discover signs of water damage during the walk-through, reach out to a water damage restoration professional for an extensive assessment. If your home is in one of our service areas, note that we offer free mold and water damage assessments. We’re happy to help you prepare for renting or buying a home.

Learn more via 10 tips for first time homebuyers blog.

We service the following locations:

Colorado cities of Fort Collins, Loveland and Greeley, call us at 970-581-4498.

Wyoming cities of Laramie and Cheyenne, call us at 970-581-4498.

Albuquerque, New Mexico, call us at 505-250-6500.

10 Top Home Maintenance Tips for Summer

Long summer days are here—and it’s the perfect time to spruce up your home in time for outdoor barbecues and parties. To help you get started, we rounded up the top 10 home maintenance items to check off your list this season.

Like all maintenance, keeping up with home improvements is the best way to prevent mold, water damage, and expensive repairs. By inspecting, cleaning, and repairing your home once or twice a year, you’ll not only minimize damage—you’ll keep costs low and maintain your home’s value. Keep your peace of mind with these 10 home maintenance tips.

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1. Clean the Gutters

While gutters are great at keeping water away from your foundation and flowerbeds, it’s easy for these systems to get clogged with clippings, twigs, and mud. Clearing away debris prevents water from dripping down your siding, flooding your foundation, or ruining your landscaping.

All of these water issues can contribute to expensive water damage, or a flooded basement. So grab some rubber gloves and a sturdy shovel—here’s how to clean out your gutters.

  • Wear a long-sleeved shirt and work gloves.
  • Get a scoop or shovel that fits inside your gutters.
  • Use a stable ladder, one that won’t lean against your gutters.
  • Put down a tarp to catch muck and protect your lawn.
  • Clear out debris and check for dents or damage.
  • Flush clean gutters with water to look for leaks.

2. Inspect Your HVAC System

When the weather is heating up in spring or cooling down in fall, it’s important to check your heating and air conditioning units. Maintaining your system will make your unit last longer and help avoid failures at peak temperatures—going without air conditioning in extreme heat can cause serious medical issues for young and old. Whether you have an outdoor or indoor unit, these are the steps to maintain it.

Outdoor Units

  • Clean dirt and debris from inside the system cabinet.
  • Check for proper refrigerant levels and adjust if necessary.
  • Look over the base pan for clogged drain openings and clear any debris.
  • Inspect the coil, cabinet, motor, and fan blades for damage.
  • Examine the control box, wirings, and connections for wear.
  • Scan the compressor and tubing for damage or wear.

Indoor Units

  • Inspect and clean the blower housing, wheel and motor.
  • Clean or replace the air filters.
  • Check the combustion blower housing for debris.
  • Examine and clean the evaporator coil and drain lines.
  • Look over the flue system.
  • Scan the control box, wiring, and connections for wear.

3. Look over Your Roof

Roof maintenance plays a heavy role in home care—any serious leaks can spread water damage throughout your ceilings, walls, or attic. Oftentimes, roof leaks go unnoticed and repairs becomes increasingly costly over time. Apart from water damage, roof leaks create the perfect environment for mold and mildew.

Learn more: “10 Warning Signs Your Roof is Damaged

To keep your roof in top-notch shape, here’s what to look for while up on the ladder.

  • Missing or broken shingles
  • Shingles that are warped, buckling, or blistering
  • Missing or damaged chimney cap
  • Cracked caulk or rust on flashing
  • Worn or cracker rubber boots on vent pipes
  • Masses of moss and lichen, which show extensive roof decay

4. Touch up Exterior with Paint or Primer

While we often think of mold living inside our homes, it can also grow on the exterior. As with any house, there are dark, warm places the sunlight barely reaches. (Think under awnings, beneath balconies, and behind landscaping). Mold and mildew can thrive in these areas, especially if you have porous wood siding. To prevent future growth and damaging stains, take these steps to clean mold or dirt from exterior of your home.

  • Wash the exterior with a bleach solution or an environmentally-friendly cleaning product
  • Let the solution sit for the appropriate amount of time
  • Scrub the affected areas with cleaning brush and hose it down
  • Wait for the surface to dry
  • Touch up any stains with a mold-resistant paint or primer to prevent future growth

5. Check for Window Leaks

Protecting your home against weather is a tough task, so it’s crucial to examine windows for any signs of damage. Cracked caulk, rotten frames, and broken panes let in moisture, which can cause water leaks in interior walls. While checking the interior and exterior of your windows, keep an eye out for the following.

  • Cracked or worn caulk
  • Cracked or missing panes
  • Broken or rotten frames, especially if made of wood
  • Debris clogging drain holes
  • Holes or tears in screens

6. Inspect doors and thresholds

Similar to windows, damaged doors and thresholds can let in moisture, water, unwanted pests, and outside air. Since these areas get heavy use, it’s important to check your door jamb and threshold spacing for gaps. Also, keep an eye out for this damage.

  • Cracked or worn caulk
  • Split or worn foundation
  • Damaged door frames or locks
  • Broken panes or splintered wood

Learn more: “How to Protect Wood Floors from Water Damage

7. Examine Sprinkler Systems

As we mentioned earlier, a faulty irrigation system is one of the main causes of basement flooding. In combination with improper landscape grading, a leaky sprinkler system can saturate the ground—and drain water into your home.

To make sure water gets to your garden instead, spend some time checking your piping, sprinkler heads, backflow system, and spray patterns. For detailed maintenance, take a look at this in-depth sprinkler maintenance checklist.

8. Power Wash Home and Porch

After cleaning the gutters and checking for any mold on exterior paint, it’s an ideal time to power wash your siding and porch. An annual washing will help prevent mold growth, clear away dirt to see if paint touch ups are necessary, and wash away the muck from other maintenance projects.

Before spraying down your house, make sure you check for damaged siding, cracks in the foundation, or gouged wood. You don’t want to soak your house if there’s a possibility of water damage, so make any repairs before hooking up the hose. For decks, railings, and fences, it’s best to use a lower pressure (1250-2000psi) to avoid damaging the surface.

9. Scan Outdoor Lighting

While you’re outside working on other home repairs, remember to examine your outdoor lighting. If you have automatic timers or motion-sensing lights, check the bulbs and control panels. For other lighting fixtures, keep this maintenance checklist in mind.

  • Damaged covers and broken bulbs
  • Worn caulk on fixture seals that attach the lighting to your house
  • Split wiring or faulty connections to prevent electric damage

10. Inspect Paths, Driveways, and Concrete Slabs

If you live in an area where the weather fluctuates from extreme cold to extreme heat, your pavement and concrete is more likely to crack and move. However, every homeowner should be on the lookout for large cracks and shifts. If you find one that’s cause for alarm, here’s what to do.

  • Check that all exteriors slabs drain away from foundation to prevent water damage
  • Fill in cracks with concrete or silicon filler
  • When cracks are dry, lightly pressure wash the area and seal

Ready to Tackle Home Maintenance Projects?

Armed with our 10 Tips for Home Maintenance checklist, you’re ready to tackle the projects that make the biggest impact on home improvement. For more tips on how to maintain a healthy home without water damage or mold, subscribe to our social channels for the latest updates and articles.

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We service the following locations:

Colorado cities of Fort Collins, Loveland and Greeley, call us at 970-581-4498.

Wyoming cities of Laramie and Cheyenne, call us at 970-581-4498.

Albuquerque, New Mexico, call us at 505-250-6500.

Keep Your Home Safe: 7 Things to Know About Mold

What home maintenance issues make us cringe more than mold? Although a lot of information exists on how to notice, treat, and remove mold, we’re answering the questions that matter most to keep your family healthy and your home safe. Roll up your sleeves—we’re about to answer your most pressing questions.

1. How Can I Tell If I Have a Mold Problem?

If you believe mold is growing in your home or building, you’ll be able to tell through visual signs or noticeable smells. Small clusters of green, black, or brown growth are major indicators of mold, in addition to a musty odor. If your home has recently experienced water damage or leaks, it’s more susceptible to mold. However, as soon as you experience water damage, or see or smell mold, you can prevent further growth by removing the moisture and mold as quickly as possible.

2. How Does Mold Enter My Home?

Mold spores feed on dirt, dust, and any organic materials. No matter how meticulous you are about cleaning, every home can bring in mold through ventilation systems, shoes, clothes, pets, building materials, and much more. To lower the risk of activating these spores, it’s important to keep your indoor humidity level below 60%.

3. Where Can Mold Hide?

Every nook, cranny, and humid space is perfect for mold to hide and flourish. While this can happen on the interior and exterior of your home, it’s more common to discover mold in dark unused spaces such as basements, crawl spaces, closets, attics, or under sinks. In less obvious cases, mold can also develop behind wall paper, paneling, and walls. If you can’t see signs of mold, but you can smell a musty odor, it might be time to dive deeper into your water damage history or schedule a professional mold inspection.

4. I Found Mold — What’s Next?

Depending on the extent of the mold growth, the type, the location, and your comfort level, you can treat the mold yourself or consult a professional mold remediation service. While we caution against treating mold yourself, we’ve covered how effective household cleaners are in removing mold and mildew.

5. Is It Safe to Clean Mold on My Own?

Depending on the type of mold and how large the area is, it can be possible to clean it yourself. For instance, a small amount of mildew in your shower can be treated with common household cleaners. However, if it looks like toxic black mold or if the growth covers many square feet, it’s best to call a professional mold removal and remediation company. Some household cleaners simply mask the problem or make it worse. Since mold can cause a myriad of health concerns, we always recommend consulting an expert to help completely remove spores.

6. What Health Symptoms Result from Mold Exposure?

Many people don’t consider indoor air quality as a contributing factor for health issues, but this is often the case if mold is present. Mold affects humans and animals in incredibly negative ways, from skin rashes and onset asthma to cognitive issues, immune system suppression, respiratory distress, and inflammation. Additionally, workplace mold exposure is becoming an increasing issue. If you experience these symptoms and believe it may be a result of mold, consult a healthcare professional immediately.

7. How Can I Prevent Mold from Reoccurring?

Mold needs moisture, warmth, and a porous surface to grow—and your home is a prime environment. The easiest way to prevent mold from popping up is to routinely check for leaks, pipe drips, moisture buildup, and other water damage. If given the chance, mold will quickly develop and affect everyone in your home. You can also hire professionals to perform a yearly mold inspection or help repair any water damage.

Know When to Call Mold Remediation Professionals

Handling and cleaning mold on your own is a messy business. What makes it so difficult is completely removing the mold to prevent it from reoccurring. That’s where we step in. As experts in mold, mildew, and water removal, we know how to keep you and your family safe when dealing with a mold issue. Give us a call if you find mold—we’ll be over within two hours to assess the damage and make a plan for removal.

We service the following locations:

Colorado cities of Fort Collins, Loveland and Greeley, call us at 970-581-4498.

Wyoming cities of Laramie and Cheyenne, call us at 970-581-4498.

Albuquerque, New Mexico, call us at 505-250-6500.

How Vapor Barriers Protect Your Home Year-Round

In cold-weather climates, installing vapor barriers is an incredibly useful way to reduce the movement of moisture between a home’s outside and inside walls. From decreasing mold growth to saving energy, we’re going to break down the basics of vapor barriers and share thoughts on why installing a vapor barrier is the right choice to protect your home.

 

Vapor Barrier Installed Crawl Space by Water Extraction Experts

Vapor Barrier Installed in Crawl Space

The Benefits of Vapor Barriers

Staying true to its name, a vapor barrier decreases the movement of water vapor from one place to another. Typically made of polyethylene, this thin plastic sheeting acts as a barrier between contrasting cold and warm temperatures, slowing moisture movement, preventing it from creeping into your home, and protecting your crawlspace from water.

Since vapor barriers work to simultaneously prevent moisture from entering a home and allow it to flow out, the type of material and installation process is incredibly important. If you don’t chose the proper material or placement for your home and climate, vapor barriers can cause the exact moisture problems they were made to prevent. (Think trapped water, mold, low air quality, and structural damage).

However, when correctly installed, vapor barriers can greatly reduce the risk of mold, protect a crawl space or basement from moisture, and act as insulation to lower energy bills. Typically, vapor barriers enclose and seal your lower levels to prevent moisture from reoccuring inside your home.

Key Considerations for Vapor Barriers

While every homeowner, real estate agent, or property manager enjoys having a tightly-sealed, energy-efficient home, it’s important to take these considerations into account before installing a vapor barrier. As installation is quite complex, it is best to consult a knowledgeable building professional with any questions.

Climate

Since water condenses on the warm side of a wall, installing vapor barriers on interior walls is the best option for preventing moisture from seeping into the framing. As a result, vapor barriers make the most sense for buildings that experience cooler temperatures, where air is typically warmer on the interior.

Material and Permeability

Water vapor barriers are available in three classes, categorized by unit of perms.

  • Class 1 is <0.1 perms. Materials includes glass, sheet metal, polyethylene sheet, or rubber membrane.
  • Class 2 is >0.1 perms but ≤1.0 perms. Materials include unfaced expanded or extruded polystyrene, 30-pound asphalt coated paper, plywood, or bitumen coated kraft paper.
  • Class 3 is >1.0 perms but ≤10 perms. Materials include gypsum board, unfaced fiberglass insulation, cellulose insulation, board lumber, concrete block, brick, 15-pound asphalt coated paper, and house wrap.

Many building codes require these materials to be used under wall board to prevent moisture from reaching a building’s structure. For residential home, most vapor barriers have a Class 1 permeability.

Construction

Due to the extensive labor required to install a vapor barrier, it is often easier to put one in when undergoing extensive reconstruction or building a new home. Although, exceptions do exist for unfinished basements and crawl spaces.

Due to the open framing and lack of drywall, these spaces are perfect for vapor barriers. Cement basement walls or soil crawl space floors easily hold moisture, but putting a barrier between the floor and the rest of your home not only helps keep humidity out—it lowers the risk of pests, mold, and fluctuating temperatures. This is especially important in the winter, when dropping temperatures can cause pipes to freeze and burst. While it is easier to install a vapor barrier in unfinished areas of a home, our team at Water Extraction Experts will work with you no matter the construction phase.

 

Sealing Base of Vapor Barrier by Water Extraction Experts

Sealing Base of Vapor Barrier

How Vapor Barrier Installation Works

Before installing a vapor barrier in a residential or commercial building, it is important to seek the advice of a professional installation company. As mentioned earlier, hasty installations or incorrect placement can cause humidity to rise, framing to rot, mold formation, and rusty ductwork.

If you do call for a professional vapor barrier installer, our team will perform an inspection of your home, crawl space, or basement. We’ll look for signs of water damage, high moisture content, rotting wood, and improperly installed insulation. If you already have a vapor barrier installed, its condition, age, and water stains will be considered.

Example of Professional Vapor Barrier Installation

As vapor barrier experts, we know what it takes to correctly install a barrier and seal off a space. Every home is different and considerations come up regarding climate, past history of water damage, and current structure. To show an example of what vapor barriers look like, we’re sharing photos from one of our own crawl space vapor barrier installations below. This particular home needed to protect their crawl space from water and control moisture content.

 

Team Installing Vapor Barrier by Water Extraction Experts

Team Installing Vapor Barrier

Next Steps to Protect Your Home

If your area experiences cold winters, you may want to consider installing a vapor barrier in your crawlspace or basement, in addition to winterizing your home. Not only will it help prevent moisture build up, a vapor barrier will also help insulate your home, save money on heating bills, and greatly reduce your risk of developing mold. Schedule an assessment today, and we’ll help safely seal your home with a perfect installation.

We service the following locations:

Colorado cities of Fort Collins, Loveland and Greeley, call us at 970-581-4498.

Wyoming cities of Laramie and Cheyenne, call us at 970-581-4498.

Albuquerque, New Mexico, call us at 505-250-6500.

Keep Schools & Offices Safe: How to Prevent & Notice Mold

Moisture issues in schools and office buildings can be cause for alarm—often contributing to respiratory problems and unwanted mold growth. Whether from window and roof leaks, high indoor humidity, or flooding, moisture needs to be controlled to maintain a safe environment. To keep these buildings safe, we’re sharing common causes for excessive moisture, preventative steps to decrease the chance of mold, and what to look for on routine maintenance checks.

Causes of Mold in Schools and Offices

Have you ever walked into an old building and immediately noticed a musty smell? While some factors (such as the age of a building) contribute to indoor moisture issues, there are a variety of conditions that can lead to mold.

1. Building Construction Practices

Throughout the decades, construction regulations have been constantly changing and updating. While most buildings go through annual inspections to stay up to code, both old and new construction is susceptible to elevated humidity or water leaks.

In newer structures, regulations often require incredibly tight seals that prevent moisture from going in or out. While this is beneficial for not letting damp air in, it becomes a moisture issue when air cannot escape. If a building is well-regulated with HVAC and dehumidifiers, then the indoor air will have a humidity between 30-60 percent. On the reverse side, an aging building can have worn or missing seals, failing HVAC systems, or a history of leaks.

2. Delayed Maintenance or Insufficient Funds

No matter the age of a school or office building, delayed maintenance for a water or moisture issue is highly likely to contribute to mold growth. (We circle back to preventing a maintenance mistake below, so keep reading). Additionally, slow repair times are often due to a lack of funds and personnel. This can especially be an issue in schools experiencing rapid growth, when portable classrooms or trailers are hastily constructed.

In all buildings, it’s crucial to inspect roofs, HVAC systems, basements, crawlspaces, locker rooms, gymnasiums, and other moisture-generating areas for annual repairs and signs of mold. Similar to home maintenance checklists, non-industrial buildings must keep up on regular maintenance schedules. If you’re not confident on what to look out for, follow the steps to prevent mold and health-related illnesses below.

Learn More: How “Does Mold Damage Property?

Preventative Steps to Reduce the Risk of Mold

1. Respond Quickly

Whenever water damage or moisture is present, acting swiftly is key. A rapid response time can mean saving thousands of dollars—and your peace of mind. If water or moisture is left for more than 48 hours, it can cause irreversible damage and begin harboring mold. As soon as you notice the damage, begin removing water, cleaning, and drying the affected areas. Then, we advise you to:

  • Fix the source of the problem to prevent further damage.
  • Clean and dry any wet building materials within 24-48 hours.
  • Remove any saturated carpeting or porous materials.
  • Completely dry the area before beginning restoration.

If the water damage is extensive or you discover mold, consider calling an expert water restoration company to lend a hand.

2. Manage Moisture and Indoor Humidity

A large part of controlling mold growth and its resulting health problems is by managing moisture in the air. Any building’s indoor humidity level can fluctuate between 30-60%, but it’s important to keep the moisture content from rising any higher. To prevent an increase, you can take the following measures:

  • Use dehumidifiers and air conditioners to control moisture levels.
  • Establish proper outside ventilation for showers, bathrooms, locker rooms, gymnasiums, and other moisture-generating areas.
  • Utilize venting fans in food preparation areas when cooking or cleaning.

3. Control Condensation

While condensation is easy to look over, its consistent cycles of moisture can sneak up and cause mold in unsuspecting places. In order to avoid this issue, consider inspecting the following moisture-generating areas and adhering to these suggestions.

  • Do not place carpet by drinking fountains, sinks, on concrete floors, or in school laboratories.
  • Add insulation to areas where condensation often accumulates. (On cold windows, doors, floors, or walls).
  • Immediately clean carpet or floors when spots, stains, or spills are discovered. Allow the surfaces to dry as quickly and completely as possible.

Awareness of Maintenance Schedules

When it comes to maintaining a non-industrial building such as a school or office, the easiest way to prevent mold will always be to schedule routine maintenance checks and keep an eye out for signs of excessive moisture.

If you believe a building is cause for concern, or it has recently experienced water damage, give us a call—or fill out the form below to schedule an assessment. Our 24/7 emergency response team is here to answer your questions and repair your building as quickly as possible.

We service the following locations:

Colorado cities of Fort Collins, Loveland and Greeley, call us at 970-581-4498.

Wyoming cities of Laramie and Cheyenne, call us at 970-581-4498.

Albuquerque, New Mexico, call us at 505-250-6500.



What Areas of the Country Are Prone to Disasters?

Maybe Hollywood is onto something. Natural disaster movies have been a boon. They’ve shown us the importance of keeping a running chainsaw on hand for the occasional Sharknado.

But when it comes to real life natural disasters, it’s no laughing matter.

Whether it be a hurricane along the East Coast or wildfires consuming millions of acres in the heartland, natural disasters happen every day around the world. And while a disaster that occurs in one area may not happen in another, every part of the globe experiences a natural disaster at one time or another.

Natural disasters cost $175 billion globally in 2016 and caused 8,700 deaths. But what are the major natural disasters we should be aware of? The list is long, but we provide an overview in this blog, along with some tips and tricks for being prepared.

The Major Shakers of Mother Nature

Tsunamis

These walls of water are caused by an undersea earthquake or volcanic eruptions. As the waves travel toward land, they increase in height as the water becomes shallow.

With tsunamis come many concerns. Flooding, contamination of drinking water, fires from ruptured gas lines or tanks, and loss of life are the main concerns with tsunamis. In the United States, the West Coast is more prone to tsunamis—yet any coast on the planet can be affected.

Earthquakes

The earth is made of tectonic plates, slowly moving around and against one another. These edges are known as plate boundaries, and are made up of many faults. At these fault lines, earthquakes occur.

When the plates attempt to move away from one another, or one attempts to slide over the other, the movement releases energy, creating seismic waves. The waves then shake the earth as they are released and move—what we call an earthquake. With so much energy being released, there are many hazards that happen, from landslides and tsunamis to flooding, fires, and more.

Thunderstorms

Although they make for fascinating views, thunderstorms pack heavy punches as natural disasters. The basis for any thunderstorm is a rain shower with thunder and lightning, whether or not you experience the rain. Thunderstorms form when moisture combines with rising unstable air, and a lifting mechanism keeps the air moving upward.

But if a thunderstorm is a rain shower with a couple accessories, how are they dangerous? Fifty-one people die in the U.S. each year from lightning strikes, according to Ready.gov. On top of that, there’s also a classification of severe thunderstorms. The hazards are increased, as a severe storm has one or more of the following:

  • Hail one inch or larger in diameter
  • Winds exceeding 58 mph
  • Tornado

Tornados

While Twister made tornadoes look exciting and even romantic, anyone who’s experienced one will beg to differ. Occurring on every continent except Antarctica, tornadoes are a narrow, rotating column of air. They extend from the base of a thunderstorm to the ground—and a funnel is classified as a tornado that doesn’t touch the ground.

In the United States, peak tornado seasons vary with the seasons and geographic location. Along the Gulf coast, springtime is peak tornado season. But in the northern plains and upper Midwest regions, midsummer is when the most tornadoes occur.

Volcanoes

You might be flashing back to the middle school science fair. Yes, that time the kitchen ceiling was splattered with food coloring and baking soda. But your experiment worked.

When it comes to real life volcanoes, food coloring and baking soda are much, much tamer. Liquid rock, ash, cinders, and/or gas are expelled to the surface when a volcano erupts. The danger of volcanoes lies in the ashy, polluted air after eruption and the destructive lava that explodes from within—often causing fires and devastating landscapes.

The idea of volcanoes may conjure far off locations, along the Pacific Rim region. But for our service area, we live near an active volcano system. Yellowstone National Park is home to a caldera volcano, and part of the Yellowstone Plateau centers on an active volcanic system.

Hurricanes

These natural disasters have made headlines many times in the United States. From Andrew in South Florida in 1992 to Katrina in Louisiana and the Gulf Coast region in 2005, and Sandy in 2012, hurricanes impact large swathes of the country.

Made of rotating low-pressure systems, hurricanes are weather systems with thunderstorms. Once the winds of the system reach, exceed and sustain above 74 mph, it becomes a hurricane. They often form in the Atlantic Ocean basin during hurricane season, running June 1 to November 30.

Hurricanes bring many human hazards, from dangerously high winds picking up debris to life-threatening amounts of rain and flooding.

Heat & Drought

Heat reaches extreme levels when the combination of temperature and humidity—also known as the heat index—makes it difficult for the human body to cool itself. When the heat index reaches an unsafe level, we are susceptible to heat cramps, exhaustion, and heat stroke. No matter the condition, the danger of heat-related illness lies in the insufficient levels of salt and fluid in the body.

Although the definition of a drought varies depending on the person being asked, all are periods of drier-than-normal conditions that cause water-related problems. It’s difficult to determine when one begins, as they start and end gradually.

Wildfires

When usually healthy vegetation is stripped of moisture and access to moisture, it becomes prime fuel for wildfires. A fire becomes a wildfire with help of strong winds and warm temperatures; 80% of wildfires are started by humans, but a lightning strike or power line can also provide the needed spark. Wildfires occur around the country and globe, but the most common occur in the western United States.

Ice Storms

Caused by freezing rain, ice storms are indiscriminate in the damage they cause. And if it’s a surface, ice will accumulate, whether roads, sidewalks, roofs or trees. The Weather Channel breaks down ice storms into three categories, by the amount of ice that builds up. The categories are:

• ¼” or less
• ¼” to ½”
• ½” or more

Even a thin layer of ice can cause hazardous conditions, while heavier accumulation can damage power lines and trees. When just a ½” of ice forms on power lines, it adds 500 pounds of extra weight! The danger lies in power outages during plummeting temperatures, so anyone who lives in an area where snow, ice and rain are common during winter months should be prepared.

Avalanches

An avalanche is snow moving rapidly down a hill or mountain. While wintertime has prime avalanche conditions, weather, temperature, winds, snowpack conditions, and more factor into how likely an avalanche is to happen.

Speed is a huge factor in the level of destruction an avalanche can cause. Moving upwards of 80 mph, an avalanche moves with such force it will flatten or splinter trees, homes, buildings, and anything else in its path.

Blizzards

While many people associate large amounts of snowfall with blizzards, it’s also the wind and below freezing temperatures. Snowfalls, whiteout conditions, and temperatures combine to make blizzards dangerous for travel, exposure to cold, and temporary power outages.

Hailstorms

Raindrops appear harmless, but they’re always the beginning of hail stones. Pulled upward by thunderstorms into the coldest areas of the atmosphere, moisture freezes into sizable ice balls that can total a car and break windows.

The larger the hailstone, the more likely it is to cause damage to property and possible injury to humans and animals caught in a storm. Any hailstone under ½” in diameter usually won’t cause damage. But once hail grows larger than a dime, the risk for damage and/or injury increases.

And for customers and residents in our service areas? Nebraska, Colorado, and Wyoming have the most hailstorms each year.

Landslides

Like their snowy counterparts, avalanches, landslides are rock, debris, and/or earth moving down a slope. The most frequent speed is between 30 and 50 mph, though some have been clocked at 200 mph.

Rain, snow, earthquakes, erosion and/or human activity can cause landslides at any time of year. While many avalanches occur in the backcountry mountains, landslides are much more common in populated areas like California. In the U.S., landslides mainly occur in the Appalachian Mountains, the Rocky Mountains, the Pacific Coastal Ranges, and in some regions of Alaska and Hawaii.

Floods

Any place in the world which receives rain, even if once a decade, is under threat for flooding. Defined as “an overflowing of water onto land that is normally dry,” flash floods cause more damage and destruction due to the speed and unpredictability.

Flooding has been known to destroy homes, streets, bridges, and even towns. Attempting to travel during a flood is incredibly dangerous, as debris and rapid currents can quickly sweep away heavy objects, such as cars or small houses.

Tips to Be Prepared for Natural Disasters

Natural disasters disrupt every aspect of daily life, with no defined timeline. Any basic supplies should be non-perishable and plentiful enough to last a week. There should be one gallon of water per person, per day, along with any necessary medications and medical items.

The Red Cross recommends having copies of personal documents, such as birth certificates, insurance policies, proof of address, and passports. If you have pets, remember to have supplies for them also, including collar, leash, ID tags, food, and a carrier if necessary.

For more information on what to have on hand for disasters, check out our blog: “7 Tips to Be Proactive Before a Home or Business Disaster

How We Help After Disasters

Water Extraction Experts specializes in water damage removal and remediation. We understand that after a natural disaster, returning life to normal quickly is crucial. Putting safety first, our team of professional and certified technicians work diligently from start to finish.

We service the following locations:

Colorado cities of Fort Collins, Loveland and Greeley, call us at 970-581-4498.

Wyoming cities of Laramie and Cheyenne, call us at 970-581-4498.

Albuquerque, New Mexico, call us at 505-250-6500.

How Upcycling Graywater Can Save the Environment & Your Money

Upcycling graywater is a new practice sweeping across eco-conscious and budget-friendly households. But why use the same water for washing laundry and watering your plants? Read on to learn about graywater, how to properly recycle it, and what regulations to keep in mind while setting up your own system.

What Is Graywater?

While the spellings may vary, greywater, graywater, grey water and gray water all mean the same thing—any domestic wastewater produced, other than sewage. Riding the line between clean white water and non-sanitary blackwater, graywater is a valuable resource that can serve many uses when recycled properly.

The difference between white, gray and blackwater has to do with organic loading, which is based on the quality of the water source. This quality is determined by the amount of organic material (such as dirt and minerals) added to a body of water that will breakdown within an environment.

Graywater earns its name because it contains traces of dirt, good, grease, hair, and certain household cleaning products. However, this water is still clean enough to be used again! Since the average person generates upwards of 40 gallons of graywater each day, there’s a great opportunity to recycle it and save on water bills.

How to Recycle Graywater Through Treatment

By reusing or upcycling graywater, you only pay once for water—from showering to keeping your lawn lush and green. But the largest savings comes from lowering your septic tank maintenance and reducing your overall demand for potable water. When you factor in local climate conditions and household use, you can determine just how much water is saved.

For now, most states require graywater to be treated as carefully as blackwater. This means it must run through a separate purification system to be thoroughly clean. Any system used to purify graywater should be as simple as possible, as it increases the longevity of the system.

The most common graywater recycling system in households is a laundry-to-landscape system. It works by pumping used water from the washing machine to a bin or basin outside the home. Oftentimes, this water runs through a mulch basin; mulch keeps soil moist around plants and acts as a filter for unnecessary solids. Besides watering your landscaping, this setup is relatively inexpensive to build and maintain.

If you’re a DIY type, you can pick up parts and labor for a laundry-to-landscape system for around $100. Another option is paying approximately $500 for a professional installation, although this cost is offset fairly quickly. According to the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, it will take two-and-a-half to six years to offset your system’s costs.

Legal Restrictions for Upcycling Graywater

You may have heard the term “water rights” when discussing graywater and water reclamation. While we’re accustomed to having water at our disposal every moment of the day, there are legalities for water use in many parts of the country. If you live in the eastern or western half of the United States, the Riparian Doctrine or Prior Appropriation Doctrine may govern your water rights and ability to recycle graywater.

At our office location in Colorado, a 2013 state bill allowed graywater to be used at several levels. The Colorado House Bill 13-1044 says graywater can be used to flush toilets and irrigate landscapes for residential, multi-residential, and commercial locations. Other states like Nebraska, New Mexico, and Wyoming, have similar regulations.

No matter where you live, it’s important to look into state regulations before putting your own upcycling system together. Take a look at the specific state rules and browse through research about water recycling on the Environmental Protection Agency’s website for more information. Now is the perfect time to try graywater recycling to take a step towards saving money—and the environment.

What About Water Damage?

Water damage can be caused by a variety of sources, including leaking appliances, building maintenance issues, and bad weather. We offer an initial water damage assessment in our “one hour or less” response time. We provide services for water leak detection, water damage restoration, and mold removal. If you have a water cleanup emergency, give us a call. We work directly with your insurance.

We service the following locations:

Colorado cities of Fort Collins, Loveland and Greeley, call us at 970-581-4498.

Wyoming cities of Laramie and Cheyenne, call us at 970-581-4498.

Albuquerque, New Mexico, call us at 505-250-6500.

Do Household Cleaners Really Kill Mold and Mildew?

What words come to mind when you think of a newly cleaned bathroom or kitchen?

Shining. Pristine. Lemony-fresh. Sterile.

Now, what products do you use to clean it?

You probably use a liquid, gel, or something in between—and likely purchase new products once or twice a year. Armed with an array of products, you splash and spray these onto almost every surface in your home.

As promised, the vast majority of cleaning products appeal to our mistrust of microbes mold, mildew, bacteria, and germs. You know, the teeny, tiny things you haven’t thought about since high school science class lectures.

It’s estimated that consumers spend between $573 and $854 each year on cleaning supplies. Naturally, everyone wants to rid their surfaces of unhealthy bacteria, since these can cause health issues and affect your home’s aesthetics.

But can this plethora of cleaning products keep frequent, albeit unwanted, mold and mildew at bay?

What Is an Antibacterial Surface?

Despite common belief, an antibacterial surface or product cannot truly exist. The term “antibacterial” describes any agent, pharmaceutical or otherwise, that kills or prevents further growth of bacteria. It’s one of several agents falling under the antimicrobial and antibiotic umbrella.

But what exactly is an agent? It’s the cleaning spray bottle underneath your kitchen sink with the sides puckered. Or the sliver of soap lying on your bathroom counter.

In theory, a surface becomes an antibacterial surface when cleaned with any agent. No matter which agent you use to clean, no surface stays without bacteria for long.

As you likely remember from science class, bacteria are single-celled microorganisms. They reproduce by a single bacterium splitting itself into two daughter cells, called binary fission. Not all bacteria reproduce at the same rate, so using an antibacterial agent can keep them at bay.

Nevertheless, bacteria have a survival tactic we’ve all heard about. Endospores lie dormant, but as needed, they make the bacteria resistant to UV radiation, heat, and chemicals.

How Do Antibacterial Agents Differ from Antimicrobial?

While antibacterial agents are primarily used to kill bacteria, antimicrobials kill or slow the growth of microorganisms, such as mold and mildew.

Mold and mildew are fungi and more complex than bacteria. The incredible growth difference between fungi and bacteria is what sets them apart to the naked eye. As mold grows, its hyphae, long, multi-celled filaments, grow into the mycelia, or large masses, we’re used to seeing in damp bathrooms or leaking cabinets.

Do Antibacterials and Antimicrobials Really Help Clean?

Technically yes. If you purchase the right products, you can keep your showers, bathrooms, and kitchens clean. For public use, there are three kinds of antimicrobials approved: sterilizers, disinfectants, and sanitizers.

Sanitizers, in this instance, won’t do a thing for a mold or mildew problem. These products will reduce the bacteria on a surface, but won’t affect fungi. Although sanitizers are the most common way to keep hands and surfaces clean, they are the weakest antimicrobials. To solve a mold or mildew problem, you’ll need a much stronger product.

To fight the tougher fungi, you’ll need a disinfectant or sterilizer. These kill both mold and mildew, along with bacteria. Common disinfectant products come in sprays, liquids, and gels. Due to their strength, sterilizers have more restrictions for everyday use, with many classified as restricted use pesticides.

Can Mold and Mildew Still Form on Properly Cleaned Surfaces?

Unfortunately, yes. Even the cleanest, most disinfected surface still grows mold and/or mildew if the underlying issue of water damage isn’t fixed.

In your home, a bent or broken pipe dripping water can provide the moisture fungi need to grow. Another common problem that leads to mold growth is not running a dehumidifier in a finished basement. If not allowed to dry out properly, moisture will linger and create a prime environment for mold and mildew to develop.

When cleaning a mold or mildew infected area, using an antimicrobial on the surface will get rid of the fungi for a short amount of time. But if there’s an underlying water problem, you’ll likely see the fungi quickly return. If you believe you have a water damage or moisture issue in your home that’s difficult to fix yourself, make sure to consult a professional water restoration service. The faster you correct the problem, the healthier and happier your family (and home) will be.

If you do run into an extreme mold problem caused by flooding, unknown pipe leaks or excessive moisture, give our service professionals at Water Extraction Experts a call. We have the expertise and knowledge to remove the surface and air pollutants from your home and surfaces. No matter the time or day, our experts are available 24/7 to help preserve your home, health, and peace of mind.

We service the following locations:

Colorado cities of Fort Collins, Loveland and Greeley, call us at 970-581-4498.

Wyoming cities of Laramie and Cheyenne, call us at 970-581-4498.

Albuquerque, New Mexico, call us at 505-250-6500.