Empty Buildings: People Move Out, Mold Moves In

Empty Buildings: People Move Out, Mold Moves In

Across the nation, buildings are emptying out. People are staying home in order to promote their own safety as well as the safety of others. During this time, it’s important that building owners and facility managers take the steps necessary to protect their buildings while they are empty.

Exit People, Enter Mold

Vacant buildings can easily become the ideal place for mold infestations. Without people inside, it might make sense to shut off HVAC systems, close the blinds, and fulfill every expectation that comes with a closed building. While these steps might save money initially, they also expose the building to a host of mold-promoting factors.

Mold spores are everywhere. But unless they come into an environment that allows them to multiply, they tend to go unnoticed. Unfortunately, empty buildings create an environment that does indeed allow them to multiply. By closing shutters and blinds, rooms don’t have UV rays coming through the windows and killing mold spores. As a result, rooms that might not typically seem like a place that mold could grow become just that as soon as the building is vacant and shut down. In addition to a decrease in light waves coming through, there is also a host of issues that are a result of the HVAC system being shut down. Outdoor temperatures are increasing, so without the usual cool air pumping through a building, indoor temperatures will as well. In addition to warmer temperatures, a lack of air conditioning leads to increased humidity. That combination of warm temperatures and increased humidity is absolutely ideal for mold growth.

What you can do to stop mold

Luckily, there are steps you can take to prepare your building for a temporary vacancy. First, give it a thorough cleaning. Thoroughly cleaning carpet and wiping down surfaces can remove existing mold spores that can lead to a much bigger problem. You can also implement a temporary climate solution in parts of the building that are particularly vulnerable to mold infestation. AMRestore offers dehumidification systems that will keep vulnerable spaces dry and mold-free.

When things return to normal, and you can return to working in a building that has been vacant for an extended period, these tips should help keep mold spores from multiplying into a full-grown infest. If there happens to be mold in your space upon your return, the experts at AMRestore also specialize in mold removal. We will treat your space, clean the mold-covered areas, and take steps to prevent mold from coming back.

To learn more about AMRestore’s mold removal service, contact us today.

 

Protect Your Valuables from Mold in the Winter Months​

Protect Your Valuables from Mold in the Winter Months

Here on the East Coast, winter weather can lead to high humidity levels. Indoors, the humidity combines with warmer temperatures and result in ideal conditions for mold growth. While works of art, antiques, and family heirlooms may seem safe under your roof, they can be susceptible to mold growth if they are not stored properly.

Where NOT to Keep Valuables

Laundry room: laundry machines create moisture that can tarnish fine metals, warp paper and be an ideal breeding ground for mold.

Bathroom: like the laundry room, bathrooms have natural sources of moisture that can make for particularly humid situations. Take your valuables out of the bathroom and be on the lookout for mold growth on walls, in cabinets, or on a shower curtain.

Kitchen: unlike our first two locations, kitchens tend to have windows. Keep all art and photographs away from the windows when it’s cold out. Also avoid the sink area, food preparation and cooking surfaces, and the areas around an oven and dishwasher. The heat, moisture, food particles and oil in a kitchen will cut the life of your valuables short.

Near windows: areas near windows tend to mimic the weather outside, especially if not sealed properly. Keep your heirlooms, photographs and antique findings away from windows.

Near heating vents, air conditioners, radiators, air purifiers, and humidifiers: while practical for maintaining a consistent temperature in a home, these items are not art-friendly.

Near a hot lamp or in an area that receives direct sunlight: while mold growth isn’t likely, the sun’s UV rays will quickly fade any art it touches. Hot lamps can cause art and photographs to become dry and crack.

Ideally, art, antiques and family heirlooms should be stored somewhere with temperatures of 66 to 72 degrees Fahrenheit and low humidity. As winter continues to bring low temperatures and more humidity, understand that certain valuables may need to be moved in order to avoid becoming a breeding ground for mold.

Even after employing these tips, mold outbreaks are possible. If a mold outbreak is affecting your family’s most valuable items, contact AMRestore. As restoration experts, we are your best chance of bringing your items back to their original condition and not causing further damage. Contact us immediately if you notice any mold growth in your home or on any valuable items.


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