Mold — Frequently Asked Questions

Why worry about mold?

Mold. The very thought of it makes most of us just a bit uneasy. Is it any wonder then that most homeowners would rather ignore the possibility that mold is growing somewhere inside their home?

But the truth is that hidden mold problems could be making you or your loved ones sick—responsible for a number of unexplainable ailments ranging from respiratory problems to headaches and fatigue.

Mold could also silently destroy the financial investment you’ve made in your home—something you may not even realize until you’re ready to sell it and a sensitive buyer requests a mold test prior to closing.

How common are mold problems?
A Harvard University School of Public Health study of 10,000 homes in the United States and Canada found that half of the homes had "conditions of water damage and mold associated with a 50 to 100 percent increase in respiratory symptoms." One hidden mold problem can infiltrate your entire home through your heating and air conditioning system.

How can mold make someone sick?
Individuals vary in their sensitivity to mold spores. While only a medical professional can diagnose, mold spores can cause many health problems, including:

  • headaches
  • itchy eyes
  • respiratory problems, such as asthma
  • skin rash
  • chronic fatigue
  • difficulty in thinking clearly
  • and other unexplained illnesses

How do I know if I have a mold problem?
If you’ve experienced any type of flooding, water damage, or a roof or plumbing leak, there’s a good chance you may have a problem. Sometimes you can actually see or smell mold. But in many cases, it’s not visible to the human eye. Moisture causes mold to form on many surfaces, and the worst cases may not be visible at all. The only way to know if you have a mold problem is to hire a qualified environmental professional to inspect for it.

Does drying out an area kill mold?

Just because a wet area has dried doesn’t mean it is mold-free. Mold can become dormant for a long period of time and begin to grow again with the right combination of moisture or humidity. Even dormant mold can make mold-sensitive people sick.

Do bleach or paints kill mold?
Off-the-shelf bleach and disinfectants are usually too weak to kill mold—particularly in large areas or porous surfaces. Even painting over mold doesn’t solve it—it only hides the problem temporarily.  Even professional anti-microbial solutions should not be relied upon to resolve the problem.  Even dead mold can cause health problems. 

What’s the best way to remove mold?
Mold must be completely killed and properly removed from the home for effective treatment. Areas greater than 10 square feet (approximately 3’ x 3’) should be handled by a qualified mold remediation company. In addition, mold-damaged building materials should be replaced with properly treated, mold-free materials.

What should I look for in a mold remediation company?
Consider the qualifications of GPX.  GPX has employees certified by the American IAQ Council (AmIAQC) to inspect for and remediate mold.  Our employees are highly trained in mold inspection, testing and removal techniques that are safe and complete. 

Mold is an environmental issue.  GPX is an environmental contractor. Through its wholly owned divisions and subsidiaries, GPX has performed thousands of airborne environmental cleaning projects. We understand environmental methods and controls.

Companies that are not properly experienced and qualified can actually make a mold problem worse by spreading mold spores throughout a home or building. Should this happen, a proper remediation job becomes much more expensive the second time around, as well as the potential for increasing the health risks for the people who get exposed to the additional mold spores. And if they are not properly insured, the risk may effectively fall away from them.

GPX has environmental insurance that specifically includes mold consulting and remediation. With more than 65 years of experience providing environmental and specialty contracting services, we are well-qualified to handle your mold concerns.

Am I safer in a new home?
New homes often have a problem even before you move in due to moldy building materials received from suppliers or building materials left outside unprotected on the ground or exposed to rain.

How does GPX test for mold?
For our Basic Mold Inspection, our certified inspectors will, at a minimum, collect air samples to check for the presence of airborne mold spores. After collection, we send the samples to an accredited lab to be read. After we get the results, we interpret them and review our interpretation with you. We also provide our findings to you in a Basic Mold Inspection Report.

More advanced inspections may include other types of sampling and techniques. GPX may also involve third party consultants. This is especially the case for post-remediation assessments.

What happens if I have a mold problem in my home?
GPX will help you identify the source of your mold problem and discuss various options to remedy the situation.

Don’t let undetected mold steal your health or your home investment.

Call GPX at 724-779-9000 for an air quality test and inspection or visit www.gpxinc.com. 24-hour emergency service available.

Other GPX services:

  • Water damage and restoration
  • Air duct cleaning
  • Waterproofing
  • Preventative landscape excavating