How Environmentally Safe is Mold Removal?

moldy wallsPeople want to get rid of mold, sure—but they also want to know how it will be done, and whether the mold remediation process will damage the environment in any way.

This is, of course, a positive thing. Mold remediation specialists should be able to answer straightforward questions about the methods they use to eliminate mold from residential and business environments. After all, eliminating one health risk by introducing another is never an ideal situation.

So what’s the bottom line? Is it possible to eliminate a serious mold problem (or even a minor one) without using chemical treatments that damage the environment?

The honest answer is yes, definitely. Qualified mold removal specialists will always use methods that have been approved by the Environmental Protection Agency. This means they remove mold in a way that’s both highly effective and environmentally sound.

How do they do it?

There are generally three stages. The first involves a detailed assessment (including lab tests) to determine the true scope of the problem. The second stage is the actual remediation process. The third stage includes meticulous cleanup and mold prevention strategies. Most professional teams use full-body protective gear during the process—not for protection against the chemicals being used, but against the toxic mold they are removing!

What about environmentally friendly DIY methods?

If you do your own research, you’ll find plenty of articles and blog posts that discuss natural DIY mold removal. Among the most popular methods are natural extracts (including tea tree and grapefruit), vinegar, ammonia and hydrogen peroxide. People usually make a spray or solution out of these products and apply it to visible mold.

There are a few reasons why professional mold remediations companies don’t use such products. First, the majority of mold colonies are larger than what can be seen with the naked eye. Second, mold often invades porous surfaces (such as wood, fabric, some types of insulation, and more) and cannot be eradicated simply by scrubbing the surface. Third, treating a serious mold colony with natural extracts would require large amounts of solution, which is simply not cost-effective.

Generally speaking, natural extracts and solutions might be an effective way to control the problem if the following conditions are met:

The colony is small and contained
The infestation does not involve porous surfaces
Plenty of natural solution is used
Specific measures are taken to prevent the mold from re-growing

Does this mean you should turn to strong industrial chemicals for DIY mold removal? Not at all. Chemicals such as chloride bleach pose additional health risks to you and your family, and are not EPA approved for mold removal. If you do decide to tackle a mold problem yourself, consult the EPA web site for information on products that will safely and effective remove mold, without damaging your health or the environment.

The bottom line: How can I remove mold without harming the environment?

If you have a mold problem, and you’re concerned about dealing with it in the most responsible way possible, it’s useful to consider the following key points:

There is unusually more to mold infestation than meets the eye
Using weak products to defend against mold can be taxing on the budget as well as the environment
Professional mold testing is usually low-cost, and sometimes even free
Professional mold testing is focused on complete eradication and prevention

For a minor mold problem, natural DIY solutions can yield good results. In cases where the infestation is more advanced, mold removal specialists address the problem using equipment and solutions that have been determined by science to be environmentally safe.

If you have any feedback about this information, or questions about mold removal and environmental responsibility, please leave you comments below or contact us!