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water and mold damage on ceiling of commercial office building

Mold is a health hazard that can have a large impact on your commercial building. If left untreated, mold could cause building owners high costs in remediation services which is why it is so important to stay ahead of the mold problem before it becomes a costly issue to treat.

Mold can be sneaky and hard to find, but the good news about mold is that it is predicable. If you understand the conditions in which mold thrives, you will know exactly where mold likes to hide. This can help you keep an eye out for signs of mold and act quickly at the first sign of trouble.

Understand What Mold Needs

Mold has four things that are necessary for it to thrive.

  1. Organic matter and nutrients.
  2. Moisture and humidity.
  3. A surface where it can grow undisturbed.
  4. Darkness.

These four conditions must all combine for mold to grow. Keeping this in mind, let’s look at each piece individually.

  • Organic nutrients can mean dust and dirt, wood, or even drywall. Anything that was once or is currently alive.
  • Humidity and moisture levels are best above 50% and ongoing. Mold likes warm temperatures between 40 and 100 degrees.
  • Darkness is self-explanatory, as is an undisturbed surface.

5 Hiding Spots for Mold

Understanding what makes mold thrive is a perfect place to start your hunt for mold in your commercial building. Knowing that mold likes damp and dark places, here are five common hiding spots where mold is regularly found.

  1. HVAC System Drain Pans. These pans are found under your cooling coils. Air passes through the coil causing moisture to condense and drip into the drain pan. When working properly, the condensation drains away quickly, leaving no time for mold or mildew growth. However, HVAC systems don’t always work perfectly, and drain pans are the perfect place for mold to hide! Condensation may soak the actual duct work instead of just the drain pan if the air flow across the coils is too high. The condensation creates a breeding ground for mold, while the drain pan itself can become clogged with dirt and mildew.
  2. Carpet is a place where mold loves to hide. You can see mold that is on the surface of the carpet, but don’t forget that mold can form on the carpet padding beneath the surface. If a spill or leak has occurred, seeping through to the carpet pad without being dried properly becomes a perfect place for mold.
  3. Ceiling tiles are a great place to look for hidden mold. With poor ventilation and the potential for high humidity, ceiling tiles and mold are a great pair. Moisture from a hidden leak may create a damp surface that goes unnoticed for many months – we don’t typically check the ceiling for damage unless it is visible!
  4. Storage units that are filled with paper or cardboard boxes create a great home for mold. If your building has high humidity levels and past water leaks or spills, paper and cardboard that become wet and damp – and if not dried thoroughly, will become a breeding ground for mold.
  5. The duct work of your building is another perfect hiding spot for mold. While air does travel through the ducts, moist air that condenses in the ventilation system creates a great place for mold. Since the air pushes through the entire building, if mold is present in your ventilation system, it can spread quickly to different areas of your building.

How to Handle Mold in Your Property

At Water Out, we specialize in removing mold from commercial and residential properties in Fort Wayne. Our teams are trained to find the origin of the mold, locate the mold itself, and remove the mold.

Our technician will work closely with you and a Certified Indoor Air Quality professional to develop a personalized plan to clean your building and remove all traces of the mold. Once this is completed and your commercial property has passed testing, it’s safe to return.

Our goal at Water Out Fort Wayne is to keep you and your tenants safe and sound, but also move as quickly as possible to get you back in business with minimal time loss. Call us today and we will dispatch a technician to your building immediately.

Contact Water Out today 260-489-2070 for emergency property damage cleanup and services by Water Out of Fort Wayne, Northeast Indiana, Southwest Michigan, and Western Ohio.



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