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The Black Mold Facts

The black mold, stachybotrys H, has health effects on most people. There are 100K-300K species of mold and about 5 colors. All mold must be cleaned up, but the black mold is rare, but not uncommon. Factual information decreases fear, leading preservation of property and health.

There are various species of stachybotrys.  No distinction is made between them when reported using air sampling, tapes, swabs, or bulk mold tests.  From a mold cleanup perspective, it's irrelevant what type of mold it is as it is cleaned up the same way.

Uniqueness of Stachybotrys

Stachybotrys is a slime mold.  It likes relative humidity conditions greater than 80%, and its frequently found where water is relatively constant, such as a leak.

Stachybotrys is not much of a health problem until it dries out.  As it dries, is slime case dries out.  It's then the mold spores can be released into the air.

During an initial mold assessment, it is unlikely stachybotrys will be found in the air samples because the mold is still wet.  However, other molds grow in the same conditions as stachybotrys that will be picked up in the air.  If it is found in the air, the drying process has begun.

Mold testing for the black mold is different in that it needs to be tested for separately.  When a constant moisture source is found with mold in the vicinity, a swab sample is taken to show that it stachybotrys.

How often does this happen in practice? Maybe 1 in 10 mold assessments, if that much.

How Does Mold Remediation Differ for Black Mold

Mold remediation practices for the black mold don't differ at all.  However, it's much harder to do mold clearance on a house with stachybotrys than it is for any other kind because thresholds are set a lot lower.  It used to be that if any black mold was found in the air at all, the house didn't clear.  Recently, the standard changed, but not by much.

However, the amount of stachybotrys found is nearly always less than any other kind.

From a practical perspective, if stachybotrys is found during mold clearance testing, it's because the mold colony has dried out.  Then a heavy search is undertaken to find out where it is coming from.  This process usually shows where mold is hidden.  When it's uncovered, the house ends up cleaner as a result!

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