Damage caused by excess water in your home can last long after you’ve mopped up every drop. Mold, a fungus that thrives in wet and damp places, will spread quickly over areas that have not been thoroughly dried. If your home was flooded during Irene, you must move quickly to prevent a mold infestation and protect your family from the potential health effects associated with exposure to mold. Here are some tips to get you started. The Environmental Protection Agency has more information on its website.
• Absorbent materials, such as carpets, insulation, ceiling tiles and soft furnishings that become moldy should be replaced.
• Wash mold off hard surfaces with detergent and water, then dry completely.
• If mold starts growing on sheetrock, remove the wet sections, let the area dry out thoroughly and then replace with new materials.
• Reduce the indoor humidity with a dehumidifier and fans. Make sure you empty the dehumidifier bucket as soon as it is full.
• Prevent condensation in bathrooms and kitchens by using exhaust fans.
If mold has spread over a large area you may want to call a mold remediation specialist.