The Roots of Mold Removal
What Came First?
A long, long time ago in the distant 90’s a vile enemy was found in the midst of our homes and places of business. The mere mention sent shivers down the backs of all media outlets! That’s right—it was the dreaded asbestos!
You thought I was going to say mold, weren’t you? Twenty to thirty years ago, asbestos was found to be extremely dangerous to people, especially when breathed. But before we knew, fifty years of history had us putting it in all our structures because of its natural resistance to heat. Everyone had it, and everyone needed it to go away. Because of this, we made a massive push and an entire industry formed for getting the hazardous material away from the lungs of the public.
Fighting Fungus with Mold Removal
By the early 2000’s, we were finding less and less asbestos to clean up. Our latest enemy had been defeated and the excitement of removing it died down. But with such a victory against an enemy of public health, what would happen to the asbestos removal industry that was so big? No one in the multi-million-dollar industry wanted it to fall apart. So instead of letting all that work disappear, they decided to find a new villain the public could despise. Our new target was decided upon: mold. After getting a few laws passed, the mold removal industry was born from the ashes of the asbestos.
Mold is a micro-organism that has lived side-by-side with humanity since the dawn of our creation. It was here before us! Since we discovered mold, we’ve developed ways to live with it and let it even help us (bleu cheese, anyone?). Many of the protocols for the removal of asbestos are the same for mold. It’s important to prevent inhalation during removal, so we wear masks and protective gear to manage the fibers of asbestos and spores of mold. The fibers of asbestos fray easily and damage to them makes them more dangerous, so removal requires them to be wet. This isolates it as well to keep the asbestos from spreading. In mold removal, we also isolate and contain the spores and mold. One big difference is the testing. Because mold is organic and asbestos is a mineral, the discovery and testing is very different for asbestos.
Which is Worse?
Another difference is the nature of asbestos and mold. Mold can cause allergies and damage building structure, so it is dangerous. But once we remove it from your walls, mold is pretty harmless. Asbestos is a different story. Asbestos is a hazardous material from start to finish. Luckily, asbestos will never grow in your walls from a roof leak or appear on a loaf of bread overnight. Mold may come back again and again, but asbestos will never be used in our homes or businesses.
I’m not saying that mold is good for you. What I am saying is that it’s usually better for you than asbestos. If you walk outside, you will have to deal with mold. It’s everywhere. People with compromised immune systems and those who are allergic should always stay away from mold. However, if you aren’t allergic to mold, you won’t notice those every-day, outside levels of mold that we live with all the time.
Though, if you start seeing blue and black dots, you should probably contact someone who can free the fungus from your foyer.