Although we think of mold as a residential problem, mold is an equal-opportunity fungus that can cause problems for commercial structures as well. Recently, a crew from Cowleys Mold Solutions was sent to an office building in Toms River, NJ to resolve a mold problem. Mold growth can be triggered whenever a structure has some water intrusion event. That event may be internal such as a burst pipe or even chronically high indoor humidity levels, or the event may be external such as flooding, groundwater seepage through the foundation into the basement or crawl space, or what happened here, a roof leak.
This particular office building had a drop ceiling that had hid the leak and the mold growth up above. Slow leaks can often go unnoticed for quite awhile until there is water staining or some other indication of a water problem. The mold growth was finally noticed when it spread to the sheetrock. Mold will grow on anything containing organic material whether live or dead. Although sheetrock is primarily made of a mineral, gypsum, it has thick sheets of facer and backer paper that mold will use as a food source.
To treat the mold, we needed to gain access to the contaminated sheetrock by removing the ceiling tile and frame. At the customer’s request, we removed the sheetrock. In many instances, as long as their is no loss of structural integrity to the building materials on which the mold is growing, we treat the mold directly and leave the materials alone. This customer felt more comfortable having the contaminated sheetrock removed and replaced.
Once we were able to gain access to the mold-affected areas of the building, we could begin treatment. First, we applied an EPA-registered antimicrobial (MAPS 1), let it dry, and then followed it with a second application, a patented sealant (MAPS 2) that encapsulates the mold and destroys it at the cellular level. The sealant has the ability to reactivate if exposed to water or moisture and kill any future mold growth in the treated areas. With our mold treatment process, any mold growing indoors is rendered inert, harmless, and non-allergenic, and no longer poses a health risk to the building’s occupants.
We successfully resolved this commercial mold problem in less than a day. The customer was quite pleased that we could treat the mold so quickly and the office workers could get back to work with minimal delay.
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