Renters have unique challenges because they are limited in the types of repairs and changes they can make to their home. If you are renting and are concerned about mold, what should you do? This post can serve as a general guide for renters on what to do, but keep in mind that every situation is different and the severity of the mold problem plays a huge factor.
It’s the holiday season and the malls are filled with shoppers looking for the perfect gifts for family and loved ones. If you are like me, I have a difficult time finding the best gifts. However, when giving a gift to someone who wants to improve indoor air quality, it’s important that the gift will
Gather ‘round the computer screen, as I recite a tale of yore. Way off in a dark and mysterious land known as “Peoria, Illinois” (my hometown) comes the legend of Moldy Mary, and how her magic spoiled fruit helped save millions of lives. This may sound like the talk of storybooks and tall tales… you aren’t likely to see her name in history books.
Pesticides are chemicals that are used to kill different types of organisms including fungi, bacteria, and insects. These chemicals are typically sprayed onto fields or in homes where pests may be lurking. When using pesticides, we often only think about it’s intended effect which is to eliminate the pest. However, we rarely consider the effects on air quality after pesticides are sprayed. In this blog post, I will provide some information on pesticides and testing for these chemicals.
Formaldehyde is a volatile organic compound (VOC) and a human carcinogen utilized in a variety of industrial, commercial, and scientific applications. It is also a common component of new building materials. In this blog article,
When people think of mold inside their house, they typically think of a big black splotch on the wall or ceiling. More times than not, this would be correct. But mold has tens of thousands of species and can have a wide variety of colors and show up in different areas for different reasons. Although
Superman has x-ray vision, mold inspectors do not. So unless your inspector gains superpowers, how can they inspect obscured areas like inside of wall cavities for mold growth? We have a number of different options on how we can check the inside of wall cavities during mold inspections, ranging from totally noninvasive measures up to destructive methods.
The days are getting shorter and the temperature is dropping. As an added bonus, we have flu season to contend with. Every year we are encouraged by medical professionals to get a flu shot and take basic precautions like basic hand hygiene and avoiding close contact with sick individuals. Let’s add another weapon in your arsenal to protect yourself against the flu by improving the ventilation of your home.
Most people assume a property built after the late 1970s won’t have any asbestos present. While this is the most likely scenario, it is still possible to have asbestos in a home built after that time period. Many will be stunned by this revelation because they assume that asbestos was fully “banned” in the United
For many real estate professionals and the public at large, the answer to what constitutes an acceptable level of radon seems easy. Anything at 4.0 pCi/L or above warrants mitigation. Any number under 4.0 is considered safe. Or is it? EPA’s Action Level for Radon One of the first things that we need to straighten
Essential oils are used in many fragrances, cleaners, cosmetics, and aromatherapy. They are often sold as a natural alternative to industrial chemicals. Although they are “natural”, are they safe? How do they impact indoor air quality? A recent study published in the Journal of Air Quality, Atmosphere & Health found significant volatile organic compounds (VOCs)
IAQ Testing We often get calls from clients asking for indoor air quality (IAQ) testing, and when asking if they have specific concerns they will often reply with “I want to test for everything”. The problem is, air quality is a huge field! Similar to the phrase “medical testing”, it would be impossible for your
When you discover a large mold problem, your top priority is getting it remediated ASAP. In that haste, you may neglect to write out mold remediation plan. This blog post is intended to shed some light on the importance of having a written mold remediation plan when fixing a mold issue. This article will show how a remediation plan is both beneficial to the owner and the remediation contractor.
After mold has been discovered, the primary concern of the property owner is to have remediation. One potential hazard that is often overlooked is the presence of asbestos in the materials that are being remediated. While the EPA has created the RRP Rule (Renovation, Repair, and Painting) to educate contractors about accidentally disturbing lead paint, there is no such rule in regards to asbestos.
In conversations that I have with clients, I find that there is some surprise when I advise them that they should consider testing again in the future, regardless of whether the property fails the radon guideline or not. Why do we need to retest our property again for radon if the property was below
If there is a fire in a kitchen, to what degree will the adjacent room be impacted by fire-related particles? What about a room on an entirely different floor? Testing for contaminants after a structural fire can be a key step in determining the scope of cleanup and restoration. Due to the length of time
The number of allergens inside a home can be a major concern for those who suffer from allergies. If you have allergies, you want to be comfortable while indoors and not be bothered by a runny nose, watery eyes, or sneezing fits.
Many of our clients are daunted by the potential presence of asbestos in their home. What makes the process more stressful is the fear of the cost to test and abate asbestos. In this blog post, we will give you a summary of our pricing for asbestos testing services.
We occasionally receive a phone from clients with concerns about indoor air quality affecting pets, especially cats and dogs. I have heard reports that some pets have developed blindness, neurological diseases, lethargy, etc… One client recently found out that his small dog died of lung cancer, and neither the dog nor the owner were smokers! These animals could have developed these diseases naturally, or there could have been a contributing indoor environmental cause.
When we think of the damage left by a structural fire many of us might have a mental image of a home destroyed, with family heirlooms smoldering in the ashes. What about homes that only experience a limited fire and are not a total loss? Is it just as simple as removing some fire-damaged materials
As trained professionals in the mold industry, we often get clients who want to know if they can live in a mold free home. The answer to that question is “It depends on your definition of mold-free.” A home can have no significant mold growth but it will always have a background amount of mold spores.
Are you concerned about lead paint in your home? Perhaps you are in the process of purchasing an older home or are contemplating a renovation. It is imperative to assess if a home has lead paint prior to disturbing it during renovation projects or if the paint is peeling and in poor condition. There are two types of lead paint methods that may be used to uncover lead paint problems: X-Ray Fluorescence (XRF) and Paint Chip Testing. In this blog post, we will discuss both methods and their advantages and disadvantages.
With spring finally making its appearance in Chicago, real estate agents are in full swing and that means radon testing. I’ve heard a peculiar comment from a number of agents. “Radon isn’t high in Chicago,” I am told. “I can’t understand why the buyers are even wasting their money on radon testing.” Please know this
Our company tackles air quality projects in a wide range of properties. Think of a random type of building and we have probably conducted an air quality survey or industrial hygiene monitoring in a building like it. We work in small studio apartments all the way up to an airport. As you can imagine, the
A unique service that we offer is sewage testing after clean-up. This type of testing can be helpful when there was a sewage backup and it is unclear if the clean-up was successful. In this blog post, I will provide some background information on sewage testing.