What to Do when Plumbing Problems Cause Mold

Have I mentioned that my husband works in homeowners insurance? (He actually has worked in auto and flood insurance, as well, but the homeowners is his true love, and he’s pretty durn good at it!) So over the years I’ve learned a bit about the really BAD things that can make or break your homeowner experience. One of those? MOLD.

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Now, water damage can come from a wide variety of sources in human living spaces, and when it does it requires an immediate response to avoid further damage and deterioration. Water that has escaped from pipes due to plumbing conditions can present different issues depending on where it came from. Each type of problem will need its own specific solution.

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Water that has escaped from the intake lines is generally pretty clean and the most important thing to do will be to control the escaping water and keep it from soaking into the home. If the water comes from the pipes leaving your home, the problem is very different.

Water on its way out of the home is either “gray” or “black”. Gray water comes from the sinks showers and washing machines. This water is pretty smelly, greasy and contains particulate matter with a high propensity for damaging wood, building materials, furniture, storage and more.

“Black” water is what comes from the toilets or septic tanks and is far more dangerous. Black waters that have escaped are highly toxic and noxious, containing harsh chemicals and fecal matter which can spread disease if not addressed properly.    

But, one of the biggest problems that can arise from any water damage is molds and mildews. Even the cleanest homes can present this problem and the only way to properly avoid a health threatening problem is to understand a bit about how molds and mildews work their evil.

The Problems with Molds and Mildews

A mole colony can sprout up from a single spore that is too small to locate with a naked eye. Spores exist all around us in the air and properly getting rid of mold problems is typically a professional job with Spartan Plumbing.

Spores are already in your home and ready to do damage, all that is needed is the right amount of moisture to grow into a considerable threat. The very nature of molds allows them to remain hidden until there noxious presence can no longer be ignored. This could be weeks to months after the original plumbing incident that sprouted the moldy menace.

Health Risks of Mold Contamination

Mold in the home is not only a threat to the building materials, books, clothes and fine furniture; it also targets the health of the residents. One of the most common reactions from mold is greatly reduced immune systems. Even basic body repairs can seem to take much longer than usual to repair. Skin rashes are common as well as cuts and scrapes taking much longer to heal.

While these initial complications are unnerving, they are pretty mild compared to what can happen next. People living in environments profuse with mold spores are at risk of serious respiratory conditions. Asthma and pneumonia are some of the most common conditions that have been directly linked to the prolonged inhalation of mold spores. Other side effects may include allergic reactions, watery eyes, hay fever, fatigue and even memory problems.

This serious predicament can begin very small and seemingly innocuous. But it only takes one overflowing sink, one backed up toilet or busted water pipes to flood the home or even just a small section of the home and create the right environment for a mold attack. Unless the situations are remedied by a professional with proper equipment, the consequences can be ongoing.

The Importance of a Professional Mold Inspection

Due to the highly stealthy nature of a mold threat, only professional treatment can put your mind at ease and keep you and all other residents safe from mold and spores. This is because a professional has the skills and equipment to find the mold problem no matter where it rests and ensure that it has been successfully removed. Furthermore, the sources of the moisture can sometimes be difficult to see immediately. If the problem is not dealt with the first time it will need to be repeated again and again.

A reputable mold remediation professional will have the tools to search deep in the bowels of your home’s infrastructure to locate the mold colony. Special tools are used to take a count of spores in the air, higher counts are found closer to the center of the problem.

Then, the application of proper cleaning agents and tools will kill the bio-hazard and ensure that all active spores are also collected and disposed of. The source of the leaks and moisture will also be found and remedied. Finally, the spore counts will be taken again and used to verify whether the threat has been eliminated.

Final Notes on Mold Damage from Broken Pipes

Your homes indoor plumbing is a pinnacle of human innovation and engineering, when it goes awry you can expect all sorts of things to happen. Don’t cut corners on the cleaning process. If water has managed to seep and soak into hard to reach places, consider professional water damage remediation to ensure the problem ends there.

Thankfully the only issues we’ve had with mold are in our big tile showers that LOVE to grow it! Have you ever had an issue with mold in your home? How did you remedy it?

Due to the amount of comments from all of my wonderful readers, it is not always possible for me to respond to each one. However, I absolutely do read them all, and if you’d like to address something specific, or have a question for me, please don’t hesitate to email me at Kristen@theroadtodomestication.com. I will respond to your email as soon as possible! Thank you for visiting the blog!

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