Tuesday, March 1, 2016

T.M.I.

Every now and then I have to go there, sadly, and discuss the ugly side of design, and today I'm diving deep into THE MOLD ISSUE (T.M.I.). Like the annoying, stinky relative who just won't leave after the holidays, mold is no laughing matter and should be dealt with swiftly and accurately. I mention this ugly topic today as two of my clients have had major mold issues in the last several weeks. In some cases it can be managed fairly easily, while others (like drywall) are a bit more involved. Because most drywall is high in cellulose, it is one of the most common materials mold grows on in homes. If you have mold growing on drywall it's best to cut it out completely. The example above showed indications of slight bubbling and water drops (later discovered flashing on a new roof had peeled back, allowing rainwater and melted snow and ice to leak into the attic and into the walls. In this case the mold appeared on a cement wall surrounding a fireplace, covered in wallpaper. Upon closer examination (after peeling back the wallpaper) there it was, the ugly, un-invited guest. In a nonporous example like this it was fairly easy to extricate the problem.
1.) WEAR A MASK (I'm still suffering from a deep, somewhat severe cough because I did not and was exposed to mold spores...I know better but wanted to get it out ASAP. Don't make the mistake I made!
2.) I removed the wallpaper completely then in a spray bottle combined water and bleach, sprayed the wall and walked away. Do NOT rinse the surface as the water/bleach combo will kill the surface mold.
3.) IF THE MOLD HAS MOVED INTO DRYWALL you MUST remove it and replace soiled insulation.
4.) Bringing a dehumidifier into the space will help dry it out if you live in a winter climate like we do and can't open the windows and doors.
While our mothers taught us to be polite to guests no matter how long they lingered, at the first site of mold KICK IT OUT! For more information on mold, symptoms, and solutions visit www.blackmold.awardspace.com.  I promise we will get back to prettier things tomorrow!