By Nazanin HakimLiving in Las Vegas, there are many weather changes residents don’t have to contend with on a regular basis including major earthquakes, blizzards, tornadoes, or hurricanes. But water intrusions as well as flash floods are a part of this environment and one of the biggest issues is the growth of mold across the Valley.
Mold is a fungi that every human being is allergic to and it has been linked to diseases and serious allergic reactions. Mold is actually 100,000 species of microscopic fungi that only requires oxygen, water, organic source and a nutrient source in order to grow. This fungi multiplies itself in just a few days once it starts growing.
“When a water intrusion occurs, people don’t always notice it. Places to look in your home are your basement, garage by your hot water heater or a closet that backs up to a bathroom, people don’t check them every day for any problems,” said Craig Herrmann, owner of Mold Eliminators, Mirage Building Maintenance and Construction by Mirage. He is a IICRC Master Certified Flood/Fire & Mold Tech and has been in the business of mold and water damage for over 20 years.
Though flash floods are one of the main causes for mold growth, other incidences occur making this a year-round problem. “Las Vegas water supply is heavy on minerals, alkaline and copper pipes that don’t mix. Water flows through copper pipes to our homes which can leak and fail because it’s under pressure eventually growing mold,” said Herrmann. Some other factors that generate mold growth are every day routines such as cooking and dishwashing, watering house plants and even bathing can cause pipe leaks.
There are easy ways to eliminate mold in some situations. When it comes to the bathroom, the fungi can be best removed by simple tile and grout cleaning remover since it is on a tile or a granite surface. The bigger problem is when the fungi are on sheet rock, carpet and wood floors. The most efficient way to spot the outgrowth around the house is simply by identifying the smell of decay and checking all areas of the house frequently, especially after flash floods occur.
Despite mold affecting all human beings, it especially targets specific groups. Babies, pregnant women, those who have gone through chemotherapy, the elderly and those with respiratory problems are especially vulnerable. All of these groups have immune systems which have a weakened defense against mold.
There are other groups who are targeted more by the fungi as well. Those who live in apartment complexes and multifamily condominiums have a slimmer chance to eliminate mold growth if it has already started before the resident has moved in. Apartment complexes and management companies usually paint over the mold, so it is important to identify the problem as soon as the resident comes in contact with it. “One thing to do is get an apartment on the top floor since gravity travels down and those below tend to get the damage more,” said Herrmann. However, it is still wise to have any residence checked, whether a single family house or multifamily complex.
Mold Eliminators offers a free consultation to those who are suspicious of mold growth, especially right after a water damaging incident. The sooner, the better since after the water has dried, the fungi will and can still grow deeper into the surface producing mycotoxins that cause allergy symptoms. For more information on mold and services, visit LasVegasMold.com or call 702.442.1125.