Although they may not seem like such a big issue, basement leaks can wreak havoc on your home. Even a small pipe leak that lets out a teaspoon or two of water an hour or even per day can be the harbinger of a mold infestation that takes over your basement and starts moving up into your living space.
If you’re fortunate enough to have avoided leaky pipes, that’s great. Unfortunately, mold can come about as a result of a variety of causes. Flooding is one of them. Getting rid of the water in your basement after a flood will not be the end of your worries. You must completely waterproof your basement to ensure no water is getting in or out and that your basement is completely dry. If you have even the slightest bit of moisture and dampness in your basement, a mold infestation is sure to follow.
Mold thrives in dampness. Environments that are very humid and full of moisture are the perfect breeding ground for mold colonies. Like we’ve already said, a basement that’s just gone through a flood is a perfect example of a space that could soon become infested with mold.
In this post, we will take a look at some of the most common signs of basement mold and show you what can be done about it.
Does Basement Mold Smell? What Does It Look Like?
There are many varieties of mold. Most are dark and slimy. However, many varieties can actually be rather light. The colors of mold can be green, black, grey, and even white.
One characteristic of mold is that it always grows in circles or circular patterns. While you’re down in your basement, take a look at any exposed wood that you can see. If you notice any yellow or pink stains that were never there before, you may be dealing with mold. These stains can also appear on drywall or wallpaper.
Another telltale sign that there may be mold in your basement is the way that it smells. If you notice an earthy and musty smell down in your basement, you may have a mold infestation on your hands.
An important thing we want to stress at this point is that although some mold strains are not dangerous, certain types are very toxic. That is why, if you notice mold in your basement or crawl space or believe you may have an infestation, you should not take matters into your own hands. Basement waterproofing professionals have gone through extensive training, and they know how to safely get rid of mold.
Getting Rid of Basement Mold
Like we said above, mold can be toxic, so it’s best to let a professional handle it. However, it is important to know how basement waterproofing professionals deal with mold.
The approach a professional will take will depend on how severe the mold infestation in your basement is. If your home has recently experienced a flood, you may have to get rid of many of the belongings that got caught up in it. This is the surest way to prevent mold colonies from infesting your basement.
Furthermore, if drywall or insulation has sustained water damage, it may have to be ripped out as well. We believe it is best to err on the side of caution as this will help you avoid expensive future repairs.
After any affected furniture and construction materials have been removed, the next step is to clean out any mold that has already developed on important structural elements of your home like floor joists. Professional basement waterproofing experts will use commercial removers to kill mold spores and stop them from spreading. Next, they will use HEPA vacuums to remove mold spores from the air as well. They will also deal with any leftover musty smell by deodorizing your surfaces.
Stopping Mold Spores in Their Tracks
Mold is a very natural thing on Earth. It comes about very easily in any damp areas because it is one step in the natural decaying process. So don’t blame yourself if mold has developed in your basement or crawl space. However, take action. The sooner you get your mold problem taken care of, the less of a hit your pockets will take.
It’s important to note that mold will not go away on its own. You must get rid of any mold spores and work to keep your basement dry in the future. The best way to do that is with professional basement waterproofing measures.
Once a professional has gotten a handle on the mold in your basement and killed off any lingering spores, they will recommend you install a dehumidifier, which will keep the relative humidity in your basement at optimal levels. While the installation of a dehumidifier may seem like a simple enough process, you do need professional assistance here as well. This is because there are so many dehumidifier options out there and choosing the wrong device can be almost as bad as doing nothing.
In addition to a humidifier, you may want to look into a sump pump and interior drainage system as well. Depending on which part of Birmingham, AL, your home is located in, you may have to deal with flooding again. Be prepared this time and do everything you can to keep your home safe.
The final piece of advice we can give you is to look into the grading of your property. Does your yard slope toward or away from your home? The answer to this question can make a big difference in preventing the pooling of water around your home.
AFS Foundation & Waterproofing Specialists has been helping homeowners in Birmingham, AL, make sure their homes are safe and livable for their families. To find out how we can help keep your basement dry and free of mold, give us a call today or schedule a free quote.