Recently the Couer d’Alene, Rathdrum and Post Falls areas have encountered situations where mold grows in new construction housing. The problem develops when lumber is left wet and then installed in a new home. The wet wood becomes an incubator for mold. Unless the mold is treated promptly and correctly, the mold problem worsens. In situations where construction covers up the mold, the mold will continue to grow inside walls or under a floor. It also threatens to make residents of the home sick in the future.
When Service Team of Professionals (STOP) is called early, we’re able to institute a protocol to eliminate the mold and avoid further difficulty in the home. If the wood is still wet, we dry the wood to avoid further mold growth. Unfortunately, sometimes a builder or homeowner does not want to follow a good protocol to provide long-term elimination of the mold damage. In these situations significant mold damage may occur in the future.
Recently I looked at a new construction home that had been framed and closed in with wood where the owner saw noticeable mold in the crawlspace. On further examination, we found about 2,600 square feet of mold covering the entire underside of the flooring. The builder was in the process of putting a portable furnace in the crawlspace to provide heat, and the contractor had closed off all the outside vents so heat would not escape. I explained to the contractor that he was creating an environment to allow mold to grow faster. Unfortunately, the builder was instructing the next steps that would make the problem worse. I had to make the decision to step back.
In this specific situation STOP would have heated the crawlspace but used dehumidifiers to remove moisture from the air, and completely dried the wood. Further we would have cleaned the air by using or air scrubbing equipment. At the conclusion of the process, we would be able to verify the home as mold free.
Generally when we think of mold damage we think of older homes that have been shrouded with trees and moss or have had leaks that were not properly fixed. We don't think of new home construction as an incubator for mold. If you are purchasing a new home currently under construction, make sure you personally inspect all aspects of the building including the crawlspace. If you believe you smell or see mold growing, bring in Service Team of Professionals to review the home before allowing work to continue. A small investment at the beginning will stop a potentially catastrophic financial loss in your future.