A client contacted us for a mold inspection in Saugus, Ma he had concerns about a space that his landlord failed to maintain and properly fix the constant water intrusion, resulting in a commercial lease dispute. The client employees were becoming ill from prolonged exposure to the smell and mold circulating.
A building suffering from fungal contamination is not a safe environment. During exponential growth many fungi release volatile organic compounds (VOCs) causing moldy and musty odors. The occupants should be evacuated when significant visible mold colonization is diagnosed and returned only when the building is cleared for re-occupancy.
Porous materials such as ceiling tiles, carpet and pad, cellulose insulation, fabrics, plaster, sheetrock, wallpaper, etc. with visible mold contamination should be discarded. Items with visible growth or settled spore contamination should be evaluated for structure damage, discoloration from water damage, and financial or sentimental value as compared to cost of remediation vs. replacement. These items are seldom completely restorable due to discoloration, staining, or physical damage caused by the mold. Building and or contents contaminated with settled spores can often be restored depending on the exposure time. Textiles (clothing, linen, etc.) can generally be restored by standard laundry or dry cleaning methods. Upholstery items that have settled contamination and that have not been used while contamination and that have not been used while contaminated can be restored with detailed HEPA vacuuming and professional dry cleaning techniques. Non-porous materials such as brick, glass, masonry, metal, plastic, tile , wood, etc. should be able to be cleaned and treated in place. Surface mold such as wood framing should be cleaned and treated in place while rotted wood should be removed and replaced. Transitory mold (carried by air currents) can be HEPA vacuumed, wiped down with a biocide and professional cleaned.