What is Mold?


Mold is a type of fungi, not a plant or an animal.  Some types of mold are used in food and other types are used for medicinal purposes, such as the type that is used to make Penicillin. However, some types and strains of mold are harmful to our health.

Mold grows in damp, dimly-lit, warm areas where air circulation is limited or non-existent.

It can often be found in attics, basements, crawlspaces, bathrooms, kitchens, and closets. 

It is also associated with leaky roofs, pipes, windows, or flooding.

The most common types of mold found indoors included aspergillus, cladosporium, penicillium,

and stachybotrys (black mold, although many types of mold are black in color)

Mold Related Illnesses
Attic Mold

Mold spores are microscopic in size and weightless, for the most part.  This allows them to become airborne very easily.  Once floating around the air, they are inhaled by anyone in the vicinity.  The mycotoxins that are produced by some types of mold are the culprits that cause a variety of health problems, some so severe that they can actually cause permanent damage.  Infants, children, pets, the elderly, those with breathing related disorders such as asthma, and those with immune related conditions are the most susceptible to mold related illnesses.  Symptoms of mold related illnesses are:

  • Headaches

  • Sore throats

  • Trouble breathing, wheezing, shortness of breath

  • A constant runny or stuffy nose when indoors

  • Coughing

  • Sneezing

  • Red, itchy eyes

  • Bronchitis

  • Pheumonia

  • Chronic sinus infections

  • Fatigue

  • Bleeding in the lungs

Pets are not immune to the effects of mold exposure. They, too, can become sick, especially small pets.  Some of the signs include:

  • Excessive scratching (in the absence of fleas)

  • Constant licking or chewing on paws and feet

  • Skin rash

  • Runny eyes

  • Frequent sneezing

  • Itchy ears, ear infections

  • Lethargy or unexplained fatigue

How Do I Know if I have Mold in my Home?

If you or another household member have been suffering  from any illnesses that won't go away, or if you spot what you think looks like mold in your home, have your home tested by a professional certified mold tester.  There are do-it-yourself  testing kits that are available in home improvement stores but they are very limited and highly inaccurate due to the sensitivity of the process.  Improper handling can give incorrect results.  Professional mold testers can confirm the presence of mold, as well as the type or types of mold that is growing in your home. It's also crucial to know where to test for mold in order to make sure all the mold in the home is located.  Hidden mold, such as the type that hides in your duct system can make it tricky for do-it-yourselfers to locate all the mold in a home.

A certified mold tester knows where to look and what to look for so nothing is missed.

Testing for Mold

AMFW Restoration & Remediation Services use a third party testing company to conduct our tests.  This avoids the conflict of interest and guarantees accurate results, ensuring that you are getting a honest and unbiased test. After receiving the results, we will go over them with you, determine the protocol necessary, and help you to decide the most effective way to remediate the issues.  We can arrange for:

  • All testing

  • Consultation on results of all tests

  • Post-testing remedies, if applicable

  • Remediation protocol options

  • Remediation procedures

  • Post-remediation testing, if necessary

  • Post-remediation clearance letter

Mold Remediation

If it is determined that you do indeed have mold in your home, the next step is the remediation process to systematically remove all indoor mold.  There's no point in only removing some of the mold in a home.  If even a little bit is missed, it will simply grow and spread and soon you'll have a full-blown mold problem again.

Remediation is the actual removal process. But that's only the beginning for us at AMFW, as the real goal is to reverse and stop the environmental damage the mold has caused to your home.  Our team of certified technicians use protocols set forth by the national agencies that certify firms for this type of work.  We strictly follow those guidelines to ensure thorough removal under the safest conditions.  This is important to prevent further damage by cross-contamination, the spreading of volatilized spores accidentally throughout the rest of the house. The procedures used by us according to IICRC guidelines:

  • Containment of the work area to prevent cross-contamination

  • Negative pressure maintained within the work area (this causes air to flow into the contained area

      but not out, thereby preventing mold spores from leaking out of the area)

  • The removal of any affected porous material, if possible, such as drywall, wood trim, carpet/pad,

      and wood flooring

  • Mechanical abrasion to clean mold from structures that cannot be removed

  • HEPA vacuuming

  • Applications of approved anti-fungal and anti-microbial products

  • Encapsulation (sealant with anti-fungal ingredients to kill, repel, and seal off any remaining mold

      that cannot be seen so it cannot continue to spread)

  • Completion of any repairs necessary to maintain the desired environment.

After all remediation is completed, we will help you determine prevention tactics for your home.  It's easier to prevent mold in the first place than to remove it later.  Our extensive knowledge in building science and construction along with our state of the art equipment allows us to provide you with the best solutions for your home.

Call 847-453-8880 to schedule an appointment today