Look for Mold after a Hurricane
Not all hurricane damage is as obvious as a tree falling on your roof. Some of the most serious and toxic results might be growing quietly behind the walls of your home long after a hurricane has gone out to the Atlantic.
We’re talking about mold. Toxic mold can cause people to become deathly ill. Often, many people are unaware that mold is to blame simply because they can’t see it. Yet, mold is a problem we want people to check for in the weeks after a hurricane hits.
Pay Attention to Your Symptoms
One of the best ways to discover if you have mold growing in your home is to pay close attention to how you feel. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), mold can grow in a home within 2 days if water damage is not addressed. Any of the following could be signs that you have mold growing:
- Runny nose
- Sneezing or wheezing
- Watery eyes
- Itchy eyes
- Eye redness
These are typical reactions to any allergen, so mold might not be the culprit. However, these symptoms should tip you off to investigate further.
Hire a Mold Inspector
An inspector can come to your home to check for mold. Unfortunately, after a natural disaster like a hurricane, most mold inspectors could be booked for months as they check out countless homes and businesses. You can put your name on a waiting list, but you might need to evacuate your home if you are feeling strong physical symptoms.
Check Behind the Walls
You can check for mold yourself by removing any water-damaged drywall. Look for black, green, or yellow mold growing. If you see water stains on the ceiling, there is a good chance water has gone in behind the wall. Be very careful when checking for mold, as you do not want to breathe it in.
Clean Up Mold You Find
You can clean up mold yourself or hire a professional. A professional is probably best, especially if the mold problem is prevalent throughout the home or you are extremely susceptible to mold.
The CDC recommends that you first stop any water leakage. If you don’t, then any mold cleanup will be fruitless since the mold can return.
To remove mold from hard surfaces, you can make a bleach solution using 1 cup of laundry bleach for every 1 gallon of water. Remember never to combine bleach with ammonia or other cleaners which could contain ammonia, as they will create toxic fumes.
Open the windows and doors to provide fresh air or use fans to dry out the home. You should also put on non-porous gloves and goggles. You don’t want either mold or cleaner solution on you. Scrub any rough surfaces with a brush to remove all mold. Always allow surfaces to dry completely before repainting.
Not all mold can be removed. If it is growing on a soft surface, like a ceiling tile or carpet, you might be better off just throwing that out. And if you are cleaning up a large area (more than 10 square feet), the CDC recommends that you read this brief guide before beginning. It contains helpful tips and safety instructions.
Contact Bundza & Rodriguez Today
Mold can be a costly complication after a hurricane or other natural disaster. Clean up can cost thousands of dollars but is necessary to make a home livable again.
If you have a legal issue after a natural disaster, please schedule a free consultation with the Daytona Beach hurricane insurance claim attorneys at Bundza & Rodriguez, P.A. today by calling 386-252-5170.