water damaged floor in a house in delray beach

3 Things You Need to Know About Water Damage

Homeowners, especially living in the coastal areas vulnerable to hurricanes know the havoc water damage can inflict. It is needless to say that it is easier to prevent water damage than performing a water damage cleanup.

Unlike fire damage, water damage can be difficult to diagnose and they can continue sweeping through the walls, basements causing slow but potential damage. This makes identifying and attending to water damage at the earliest critical. The point also stresses on the importance of maintaining your house and performing a periodic inspection to figure out any pertinent abnormalities.

Containing water damage to the core can be a challenging task and resorting to a water damage specialist can be an ideal solution. This post features some important things that you should know as a homeowner regarding water damage.

Understand the water type

It is always ideal to know what you are dealing with. Your house can be invaded by these water types:

• Rainwater
• Freshwater and
• Sewage water

What most homeowners do not know is the fact that the water damage cleanup process should be tailored based on the water type in question. Among these water types, the rainwater can be the easiest one to handle. However, fresh and sewage water can pose several health risks as they are bound to be contaminated.

When dealing with contaminated water, it is imperative to have the necessary tools and skills to alleviate any associated concerns. This is where professional assistance can make a world of difference.

The unseen risks

DIY water damage cleanup might look effective from the outset. However, most homeowners are unaware of the danger that can be lurking in the shadows, i.e. moisture.

Abnormal moisture levels can be a major headache as it can trigger both health concerns and property damage. The mold and mildew can start forming in crawlspaces, attics or beside floorboards. This might take some time and effort to identify. This is why it is recommended to always keep an eye out for the signs of mold growth, especially after a water damage cleanup.

Cleaning up mold also requires professional supervision as the process varies with the type of mold you are dealing with. A professional can perform an inspection to ensure that no dangerous mold type of pertinent substance is invading your house.

Basement

Basement or attics are some of the most vulnerable places for water damage. As these are the rarely visited areas within your house, any minor water leaks can go unnoticed. Additionally, any roof leaks or malfunctioning gutters can eventually channel water through to the basement.

If not inspected regularly in case of water leaks, the condition can even affect the foundation of your house apart from giving way to mold growth.

Water damage restoration might sound like an easy task, however, the closer you get the deeper the whole process and scope becomes. Foresee these factors to ensure that you have taken all the necessary measures to prevent or contain water damage to your house. Be extra vigilant if you live in areas vulnerable to hurricane or flood.

Mold in ceiling of a house in west palm beach

Dangers of Attempting to Remove Mold Without Using IICRC Best Practices

Most individuals underestimate the process of Mold remediation. There are several aspects to mold remediation that requires in-depth knowledge, planning, and execution.

Mold infested structures, systems or contents can trigger different safety and health problems. Have you heard of the IICRC best practice for mold remediation?

IICRC or Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration is a non-profit organization that stands for the inspection cleaning and restoration industries. The goal of IICRC is to set up a global benchmark and standard when it comes to cleaning restoration and inspection and installation industries.

IICRC’s five major principles for mold remediation are as follows:

Ensure that the individuals involved in the process of mold removal or remediation have taken up all the possible health measures against related potential health concerns. Anyone involved in mold remediation should turn to a combination of regulations and practices to protect themselves from exposure.

It is mandatory that the project manager assesses the situation, documents and executes the whole mold remediation process in a timely and efficient manner. The process of assessing the extent of contamination is crucial for effective mold remediation. It is recommended to resort to an environmental expert to get this done.

Give high priority to prevent scenarios or conditions that seconds the spreading of molds. IICRC recognizes and reminds the hardship involved in eliminating mold contamination once it is allowed to spread.

IICRC stresses on removing the mold contaminated systems or materials as a whole from the infected structure as opposed to isolation or removals in a subset of infected areas.

Ensure necessary steps are taken to identify, locate and rectify any moisture level fluctuations. The moisture level is a critical factor that can directly drive mold growth. Understanding and regulating moisture levels is critical to prevent recontamination.

Failing to adhere to the standards set by IICRC can lead to the following consequences:

• Breathing difficulties
• Swollen eyes and itching
• Runny eyes and nose
• Coughing and chest tightness
• Throat irritations and headache

While these are some common and minor health concerns related to mold infection, they can give way to other major health concerns.

It has been proven that prolonged exposure to mold can trigger asthma in humans. Age plays a crucial role in the severity of the concern. As per the experts, infants are vulnerable to develop fungal mold easily compared to adults.

Fungal mold or penicillium develops each time the infant is exposed to mold and eventually, it can even lead to lung damage.

It is highly recommended to consider an IICRC specialist when it comes to mold remediation or removal. Identifying the signs of mold formation within your property or house can also play a crucial role. Keep in mind that a small act of precaution can give you long term protection. Foresee the possibility of mold growth when during the rainy or flood season and act wisely to keep your family safe.

Removing asbestos in a house in Florida

Asbestos Poisoning: How Serious can it be?

Asbestos is a deadly substance known to cause thousands of deaths worldwide. Naturally occurring fibrous silicate materials are collectively known as asbestosis. It was widely used for construction purposes until the late 1980s.
Asbestos in its naturally occurring state can be harmless until it is damaged. When damaged or during deterioration, it can start producing powdered asbestosis fiber that can trigger health concerns if inhaled.

Risk of asbestos

Asbestos can trigger the following health concerns:

Asbestosis: a chronic lung disease triggered by the inhalation of asbestos fibers. The condition at its latter stage leads to lung tissue scarring, chronic cough and shortness of breath. The individual diagnosed with this condition might not exhibit the symptoms until many years of consistent exposure.

Mesothelioma: a rare cancer type caused by Asbestos. The condition affects the protective membrane called mesothelium that covers the majority of the internal organs. The mesothelium of the lungs is more vulnerable to this condition. The condition is incurable if not diagnosed at an early stage.

Lung cancer: people that are diagnosed with asbestosis are vulnerable to lung cancer. The condition might take years to develop.

Factors that drive health concerns:

The fact that asbestos can trigger serious health concerns without any warning or signs/symptoms is something that makes it deadly. The following factors contribute to the risk of a health concern trigger from inhaling asbestos fiber particles:

• The density of airborne particles
• Frequency and duration of exposure
• Time elapsed after the first exposure
• Size of the particles inhaled

Defining the fine line between normal and abnormal levels

As per the EPA and the Department of Health and Human Services, there are no safe levels when it comes to asbestos exposure.

Any scenario where the asbestos within the structure of your house is disturbed can start triggering the risk of exposure. For instance, mice or rodents can dig through the walls insulated with asbestos. They are more likely to dig a hole through to your kitchen in search for food. This can turn out to be critical as they can spread the asbestos powder in a place where you store food.

A simple task of drilling a hole in your wall to hang a picture can turn out to be a mistake too. The only safe means to avoid health concerns from asbestos might be to live in a house that does not have any.
How to do an inspection for asbestos in your house.

Identifying whether your house contains any materials made of asbestosis can be a hard task. If your house was built before the 1980s, it is more likely to contain asbestos. Some of the common areas where asbestos can be involved are:

• Textured paint
• Flue pipes
• Cement pipe columns
• Hot water pipe insulation
• Cement and brick claddings

Removing asbestos is also a task that needs to be considered seriously and done efficiently. It is ideal to engage with a qualified professional to perform an asbestos inspection and get it removed from your house.