Every job that needs doing around the house, from fixing a leaky faucet to sanding down floorboards, is always a million times easier when you have the right tools. Mold removal is no exception.
Tackling small patches, or a simple shower mold removal project may require nothing more than a scrubbing brush and a bucket and can easily be carried out by the homeowner. But larger infestations or those that are not visible to the naked eye can require more specialized equipment.
In such cases, a major advantage of employing a mold removal company is that they will bring with them a range of expensive equipment that can help pinpoint both the source of the problem and monitor the progress that is being made in eliminating it.
One of the most useful items of mold remediation equipment in a professional’s toolkit is a borescope. This is essentially a thin, flexible telescope which enables the operator to spot mold inside wall cavities, crawl spaces, ceilings and other tight spaces that would otherwise be inaccessible. Only a small hole is needed to use a borescope, minimizing the level of damage to the property.
Professionals will also employ humidity gauges to see how much moisture is in the air of your home. If the levels are too high they can bring in a portable dehumidifier to reduce them rapidly by extracting moisture from the air. Portable heaters may also be brought into rooms to assist with the drying process and progress is monitored with the use of moisture meters which can measure how much wetness remains in carpets, walls, wood and other materials.
If testing shows the presence of airborne mold spores, air scrubbers may be used. These machines act like giant vacuum cleaners for the air, filtering out all unwanted particles from the atmosphere to prevent mold from spreading and reduce its impact on the health of those living in the house. Hospitals use similar air scrubbers to remove potentially infectious particles from the atmosphere.
Before remediation can begin, the type of mold must be identified. Inspectors will use hand-held ‘sniffing’ machines to sample the air and take other types of samples from areas of visible growth. Mold inspectors send their samples to a specialized lab which, after testing, will provide the inspector a detailed report outlining the results of testing and suggested remediation procedures.
Several companies offer homeowners the opportunity to test their own samples. You simply take short strips of sticky tape and press them against any mold you see, transfer them into a zip lock bag and mail them to the laboratory.
For major infestations, professionals can now bring out the state-of-the-art in mold remediation equipment: an organic fog which is sprayed around the infected area using a special compressor. This fog literally consumes the mold and mold spores in the room. This method is effective not just on hard surfaces but will also penetrate carpets, clothes and reach right to the heart of an air conditioning system or ventilation shaft.
Vacuum cleaners fitted with HEPA filters which trap mold spores and other unwanted particles are used during the final stage of clean-up in order to ensure the problem is truly gone forever.
Regardless of whether you are a professional or an amateur, the most important items of mold remediation equipment are the goggles, gloves, masks and overalls that protect you while you are in the process of removal.