Preventing mold after a flooded basement is very important to remove in your Santa Clarita home. ASAP, make sure that there are no electric wires that are under the water level. Also, make sure that you are extra careful with electric devices in wet basements. If you have standing water (flooding) in your basement, disconnect the main electrical switch or call your local fire department to do it for you! Only, use ONLY double insulated and grounded vacuums and dehumidifiers. If you are in doubt about the electrical safety of your basement, stay out of it! You can live through the water damage MUCH better than you can being electrocuted.
ASAP, make sure that there are no electric wires that are under the water level. Also, make sure that you are extra careful with electric devices in wet basements. If you have standing water (flooding) in your basement, disconnect the main electrical switch or call your local fire department to do it for you! Only, use ONLY double insulated and grounded vacuums and dehumidifiers. If you are in doubt about the electrical safety of your basement, stay out of it! You can live through the water damage MUCH better than you can being electrocuted.
Take off the basement wall baseboards and drill 1″ holes halfway between the wall studs at the base of the walls, about 2″ off the floor. When you re-install the baseboards, they will cover these holes. The holes will allow moist air from behind the drywall or paneling to be dried as the de-humidifiers suck out the humidity.
Usually, if you get the basement dry in 3 to 4 days, there will be little damage and minimal mold formation. Even if mold does start to form, as soon as you dry out the basement the mold will stop growing (mold requires moisture to grow). It is usually necessary to rip out drywall and wood
if there is a large amount of mold. Most times, there will only be a little mold growth and this will be behind the walls. If you keep the basement dry, the mold will not start growing again. Mold can be a problem to those with sensitivity or allergies, but mold only affects people because of the spores it puts out. If the mold is dead and not growing, it isn’t putting out any spores. Most types of mold are harmless. If there is visible mold growth, there is no reason to have it tested. If you see mold, you already know it is there and you have no need to find out what kind of mold it is because the remediation will be the same.
Do Not Bleach Mold
If you do get mold growth, DO NOT use bleach to clean or kill it. The EPA has determined that bleach is NOT an effective fungicide for mold growth on drywall and wood and bleach puts out harmful fumes when used in large quantities. There are much more effective (and less harmful to humans and pets!) fungicides available at the major home stores. Spray them directly on the affected areas (following the label directions) and let them kill the mold. These products will soak into the wood and drywall get to the roots of the mold, killing it completely. When the wood in the walls is completely dry, cover it with a mold encapsulating paint. This will seal up the mold and keep it from growing further.
If you have extensive mold growth, DO NOT TRY TO GO ON THE CHEAP! Hire a professional and certified mold remediation company to clean the mess up. Sure, I know this can be expensive, but doing the cheap and easy thing is ALWAYS more expensive, in the long run. There are plenty of reasons why black mold is important to remove. Stay away from handymen or the proverbial “Two guys in a white van”. Mold remediation is a complex and technical trade, requiring a great deal of specialized training and certification. If not done properly, the mold will come back, and much worse! Do it right. The EPA standards state that if the mold is plainly visible, there is no reason to have the mold tested, however, it is highly recommended that the affected areas be air sample tested one week after the remediation is done by an mold remediation Santa Clarita California company.
When all is dry (keep the basement windows closed and run the de-humidifiers, usually, for about a week or two to ensure complete dryness), it helps for your to call a licensed and certified home inspector who is also specifically trained and certified to perform mold testing. If you can hire an inspector who is also specially trained in thermal imaging, that will help to verify that the basement is fully dry. Ask the inspector for a mold clearance test, which is an air sample that ensures that mold spores are not present in the air. Make sure that the inspector does not also do mold remediation work, and that any mold remediation company you hire does not do the testing. This is a conflict of interest. If there are mold spores present, call a professional, licensed and certified mold remediation company. When they are done cleaning up, have the area re-tested by an independent mold inspector. For large or long sitting (you were flooded while away on vacation, for example) it is also wise to hire a licensed, certified and professional industrial hygienist to evaluate the problem and prepare a clean-up plan. Most professional mold remediation companies have industrial hygienists on their staff.