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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hello All!
Just lifted 2 layers of laminate flooring in kitchen. Large area under 3 yr old fridge covered in Black MOLD. Can't get to Home store at this time, no stores open. Worried about Mold spores. What do we do rite now? And than do we treat mold or replace all infected wood?? Did you use a mold spray or bleach? HELP! Thank you in advance for advice!!
 

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Mold!! Let's kill it!
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Since you've already opened this up, you now have mold spores travelling around the air in your house. Lots of them. First thing is to wet it down with a detergent solution and scrub it as best you can. If possible put a window fan in place and exhaust the air to the outside while you work. Wear an N95 rated respirator. When you have scrubbed everything off that will come off, then let it completely dry. Evaluate the material that was moldy. If it is solid and has not been compromised by the moisture, then you can treat it with a fungicide. If it is permanently damaged and can't be salvaged, then replace it. As far as fungicides, there are some commercially available that are effective as is a 10% bleach solution. As far as bleach, DO NOT exceed 10%. No fungicide is particularly effective at penetrating porous materials, regardless of what they may claim. Keep your ventilation in place while you treat. When everything has completely dried, seal the area that was effected with something like Kilz or Zinser. This will lock down any stray spores and mold fragments. Absolutely the most important thing is to figure out what caused the moisture problem that allowed the mold to thrive in the first place. All of your work will be for nothing if you don't eliminate the moisture. Scrub, Dry, Treat, Dry, Seal. Go 12" past the last signs of mold. The final effectiveness of your work is related to your diligence in carrying it out.

P.S. Laundry detergent would fall close to the bottom of my list of cleaners. Use Lestoil, Top Job or Lysol. If you don't have any of those, then dishwashing liquid would come next.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thank you for your responses. It is a 3'x3' area, only under my fridge. It was suggested to go to Home Depot and buy a spray bottle of some sort of Mold killer. We are going to replace the entire piece of infected wood.
 

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Well, not once did you mention what you plan on doing to prevent further mold problems - and that, to me anyway, is step #1. May be an icemaker leak or a faulty pan if your fridge has one. Either way, check the leak first before you go and replace the subfloor.

That's probably "Concrobium' from HD that you are talking about - a mold killer...not bad a choice compared to, say, bleach. Leave it on to dry...
 

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Mold is found everywhere. It's in the air all the time. If that is all you found in the house, you don't have to panic.
I read that vinegar will kill the spores.
In addition to already listed water source, frige defroster drain may be blocked or the tub under it may be overflowing. It is possible that refrigerator is not level and defrosted water is not draining properly. It happened to me.
Check the ice maker for water supply connections inside and outside, also.
 

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Dont Panic

This is the new panic button for Lawyers, and its a load of Bull

Just open the windows, take household bleach at 3 to 1 with water in a pump sprayer and spray the d--- mold, and you will watch it disappear. Then fix the leak. I don't know why everybody makes such a big deal out of mold, its all around us all the time. Oh yeah, I do know why. Its because the Lawyers ran out of Asbestos cases.

HONEST, THATS THE TRUTH. I have been to several pro seminars on mold and that is about the size of it.

Now its a different problem if you have a dew point problem and chronic mold, but that is much different than a leaky fridge pan, or ice maker line.

Give the poor lady a break.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thank you Jagans. Was not looking for any judgement on my end. Strictly asking for advice on how to treat Mold until I'm able to remove the diseased wood. Obviously my 1st PRIORITY would be to find the culprit-didn't think I needed to give an explanation on that. Thank you to everyone who did give positive feedback. The area is currently sprayed with a Mold spray & am letting it dry! Thanks again!
 

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Krissy,

I know you like the feel good answer that jagans gave you, but GBR & Maintenance 6 gave a lot better advice.

Just for future reference ...

1. Dead spores are many times just as dangerous as live spores. Live spores hang on to the substrate more than dead spores, which go floating in vast numbers into the air. You were better off leaving the mold alive.

2. Bleach and such doesn't kill the mold on porous surfaces. It does kill the flower part of the mold, but not the stem and roots. In fact, you may have given the roots what they were craving ... water.
 

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Mold

I never meant to imply that mold is never a problem. Where buildings are designed wrong wherein water is developed in the presence of water, heat and organic matter, a chronic problem can occur. This became a very big problem in the southern states where motels with vinyl wallpaper applied with wheat based paste were air conditioned, and the dew point fell right behind the vinyl wallpaper. The use of high grade vinyl wallpaper raised the ratings of the motels and hotels, so they insisted on its use. Extensive mold problems were the result.

This young ladies problem is not like that. This is a one off leak, in a small, isolated case. Killing with bleach and water, and making sure that the leak is solved, removing the molds ability to live, and replacing the subfloor, if it is rotten will solve her problem.

As I said in my previous post, we have been living with mold since the beginning of time. They are part of life. The last thing this country needs is another carcass for the lawyers to chew on, but that seems to be the way things happen here. We regulate based on Mania to the point where we scare everybody for no reason. How many people die from stress related issues compared to mold related issues?
 

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Mold!! Let's kill it!
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FWIW, Sodium Hypochlorite (bleach) will not only kill mold, but will disolve the glucan bonds that hold the cell walls together. And it only takes 2.4% concentration to do it and less than 5 minutes of dwell time. That means that the mold is not only dead, but has been broken down to it's component parts to an extent that it is not even considered an allergen. Never exceed 10% concentration of bleach. Breathing chlorine and chloroform compound gases is far more dangerous than any of the stuff that mold produces. Dead mold spores and mold fragments can still be allergens to some people, that is why you need to clean up the mold, then treat it and finally seal it to lock down any stray fragments or spores.
 

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FWIW, Sodium Hypochlorite (bleach) will not only kill mold, but will disolve the glucan bonds that hold the cell walls together. And it only takes 2.4% concentration to do it and less than 5 minutes of dwell time. That means that the mold is not only dead, but has been broken down to it's component parts to an extent that it is not even considered an allergen. Never exceed 10% concentration of bleach. Breathing chlorine and chloroform compound gases is far more dangerous than any of the stuff that mold produces. Dead mold spores and mold fragments can still be allergens to some people, that is why you need to clean up the mold, then treat it and finally seal it to lock down any stray fragments or spores.
Sure … bleach kills mold when it can reach the root, steam and flower, like on hard surfaces. Anti-freeze will also do this along with 100s of other products. The problem comes with it working on porous surfaces. Anyone who has ever tried to get rid of mold in their shower by using bleach and is frustrated at the inevitable return of mold within a very short time, knows that bleach does not kill mold on porous surfaces.

Many falsely assume that it works, because they remove the moisture problem … pour bleach on … and the mold problem ends. However, if you continue the moisture source … pour bleach on … the mold will return. This is because the bleach did not reach the roots and thus … did not really kill the mold after all. It is the removal of water that does the trick. Not using bleach.

EPA, CDC & OSHA use to recommend bleach, but they even have wised up and have removed bleach as a problem solver.

Just my 2 cents
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I appreciate everyone's responses. The Area where the Mold is/was is being completely replaced on Saturday. I'm sure if it was severely bad all 4 of us would be showing respiratory symptoms. Thanks again! Will post final picture of Tile floor!
 

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Mold!! Let's kill it!
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Sure … bleach kills mold when it can reach the root, steam and flower, like on hard surfaces. Anti-freeze will also do this along with 100s of other products. The problem comes with it working on porous surfaces. Anyone who has ever tried to get rid of mold in their shower by using bleach and is frustrated at the inevitable return of mold within a very short time, knows that bleach does not kill mold on porous surfaces.

Many falsely assume that it works, because they remove the moisture problem … pour bleach on … and the mold problem ends. However, if you continue the moisture source … pour bleach on … the mold will return. This is because the bleach did not reach the roots and thus … did not really kill the mold after all. It is the removal of water that does the trick. Not using bleach.

EPA, CDC & OSHA use to recommend bleach, but they even have wised up and have removed bleach as a problem solver.

Just my 2 cents
The true fact is that the bleach works just fine. What you have to realize is that in a shower you have a mold incubator. You have temperatures in the perfect range. You have perfect moisture levels, and you have the fatty acids in soap scum which is perfect gourmet mold food. You can kill the mold and it will return, because mold spores are everywhere and they've got the perfect terrain to regrow. You've grown new colonies from scratch, not regrown the originals. If one reads the fine print, none of the commercially available fungicides garantees performance on porous surfaces. It's a fact of life (at least fungal life) that mold send mycelia (roots if you will) deep into porous materials where few things can penetrate without having a severely adverse effect on the base material. I have yet to figure out why people continue to want to hold up the EPA and OSHA as experts on mold remediation. Niether agency has ever done any comprehensive studies on killing mold. The EPA's charge is to protect the environment, not tell you how to kill things that live in it. And OSHA's charge is to protect workers. The extent of their involvement with sodium hypochlorite is to make sure mold remediators aren't breathing any toxic fumes. They couldn't care less whether it kills mold. As far as the CDC, they have done studies and even recommended bleach as a sanitizer in healthcare environments, not only to kill mold, but most every other microbe imaginable, including staph and HIV. Again with the same precautions, 10% is enough.
So..... if you are not comfortable with bleach then use one of the hundreds of other things that will kill mold. Just be careful, because things like sulphuric acid or gasoline can cause you a lot more problems than the mold ever would have.
 

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The true fact is that the bleach works just fine. What you have to realize is that in a shower you have a mold incubator. You have temperatures in the perfect range. You have perfect moisture levels, and you have the fatty acids in soap scum which is perfect gourmet mold food. You can kill the mold and it will return, because mold spores are everywhere and they've got the perfect terrain to regrow. You've grown new colonies from scratch, not regrown the originals. If one reads the fine print, none of the commercially available fungicides garantees performance on porous surfaces. It's a fact of life (at least fungal life) that mold send mycelia (roots if you will) deep into porous materials where few things can penetrate without having a severely adverse effect on the base material. I have yet to figure out why people continue to want to hold up the EPA and OSHA as experts on mold remediation. Niether agency has ever done any comprehensive studies on killing mold. The EPA's charge is to protect the environment, not tell you how to kill things that live in it. And OSHA's charge is to protect workers. The extent of their involvement with sodium hypochlorite is to make sure mold remediators aren't breathing any toxic fumes. They couldn't care less whether it kills mold. As far as the CDC, they have done studies and even recommended bleach as a sanitizer in healthcare environments, not only to kill mold, but most every other microbe imaginable, including staph and HIV. Again with the same precautions, 10% is enough.
So..... if you are not comfortable with bleach then use one of the hundreds of other things that will kill mold. Just be careful, because things like sulphuric acid or gasoline can cause you a lot more problems than the mold ever would have.
OSHA

OSHA has some very good info on mold. In fact, we had to study it when I went to mold school. They specifically state that bleach is not recommended. Additionally, they say; “As a general rule, simply killing the mold, for example, with biocide is not enough. The mold must be removed, since the chemicals and proteins, which can cause a reaction in humans, are present even in dead mold”.

CDC

Mold growth can be removed from hard surfaces with commercial products, soap and water, or a bleach solution of no more than 1 cup of bleach in 1 gallon of water. Not on porous surfaces.

EPA

EPA also has a lot of information on mold, including a booklet that many "trained" remediation companies follow. We also studied their info when I went to mold school, so I could pass several test on the subject. They say; "Biocides are substances that can destroy living organisms. The use of a chemical or biocide that kills organisms such as mold (chlorine bleach, for example) is not recommended as a routine practice during mold cleanup".

Not really trying to argue the point. Just was trying to help other contractors, who are interested. I will butt out.
 

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Perhaps reading this information...about Tilex Mildew Root Penetrator and Remover...which uses beach as an active ingredient will help. Just remember, that the bleach used in household products is very diluted...and safe if used as indicated.

It appears that application is the key to killing mold...5 to 10 minutes depending on the surface, be it porous or nonporous.
 
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