Leaky Appliances Lead to Big Problems with Water Damage and Mold

Most people have, by now, heard about the dangers of mold growth in the home.  Toxic mold makes the news quite often, and is a real, meaningful threat to health if left untreated.  But where does this mold growth come from?  Why do some homes get dangerous mold growth whereas others never have to deal with it?  In almost all cases, it comes down to moisture.  So, naturally, we must ask ourselves – where is all this moisture coming from that leads to mold growth? 

One of the most common sources is from leaky or malfunctioning appliances, producing moisture in your home in places you might not even be able to see or access.  Over time, this moisture leads to water damage and mold growth, which can then spread like wildfire.  Read on to learn more about how leaky and malfunctioning appliances create moisture problems in your home, some tips on how to avoid these problems, and some advice on periodic inspection and remediation to keep yourself and your family healthy and safe.

Common Appliance and Fixture Sources of Moisture in a Home

There are numerous appliances, fixtures, and systems in your home that produce or deal with moisture.  Some are fairly obvious, such as those that deal with water as part of their operation.  Others are far less obvious and hidden.  Below, we’ve briefly described some of the most common culprits as sources of home moisture and water damage, and where, specifically, malfunctions and leaks in their systems can lead to moisture and water damage in your home. 

Washing Machines

Washing machines have several pathways from which moisture can leak out.  Water lines in, drain lines out, and the various seals where they meet the machine itself are often locations from which a leak can spring.  The wash tub, pump, and other aspects of the machine itself also have seals, gaskets, and internal piping that can become compromised over time.

Driers and Duct Work

Driers are one of the home appliances people often overlook as a potential moisture culprit.  The vents and ducts out of a drier to the outside of the home contain warm, moist air.  If they develop leaks, it’s a perfect vector for moisture to get loose in your walls, ceilings, and inaccessible spaces in your home, leading to mold growth.

Dishwashers

Like washing machines, dishwashers can be a common source of water damage and leaks.  Hoses, fittings, and fixtures can result in leaks.  Even a faulty or damaged door seal can allow small amounts of moisture to leak out during the dishwasher cycle, seeping into the cabinets, floors, or sub-flooring and leading to mold.

Water Softeners/Heaters

Obviously, water softeners and water heaters are two systems that deal directly with high volumes of water in the home.  Leaks in any parts of these systems can rapidly cause serious water accumulation and damage. 

Sinks and Plumbing Fixtures

Smaller leaks can often develop around sinks, drains, toilets, and plumbing fixtures.  These may only be evident on use, and be intermittent in nature, but can still cause damage and lead to mold development in walls, cabinets, floors, and similar.

Refrigerators/Ice Maker Water Lines

One of the most common, and often hidden sources of water damage is a leaky or malfunctioning water line running to a refrigerator/freezer unit.  As they are usually behind the refrigerator during normal use, you don’t see the water leaking out of the line.  But it can accumulate and seep into flooring and walls quite easily, and almost always leads to significant, and often hidden, mold growth. 

Tips for Preventing Moisture Leakage and Accumulation

Not all moisture leaks and malfunctions of home appliances can be prevented.  However, there are some useful tips to follow to help reduce the risk of this kind of problem happening to you.  Even if you do have water leakage, there are things you can do to reduce the risk of developing mold right away, too.

  • Ensure your home appliances, fixtures, plumbing, and any accessible pipes or duct work are maintained, with annual check-up appointments on major appliances from a qualified service technician.
  • Periodically inspect your appliances, piping, and similar, especially when the weather changes, as different humidity and temperature conditions can greatly alter the condensation and non-leak-related moisture content that can develop.
  • Make sure that any work done in your home on appliances, piping, or similar is done by a qualified professional rather than on a DIY basis.  Cheaper is not always better!
  • If you notice a water or moisture leak or problem, shut off the water to that appliance or fixture, and try to absorb any standing water from the leak with a towel or towels.  Use a fan to circulate lots of air to help promote fast drying of remaining water.  Open windows in the home to increase airflow.  Then seek out a qualified inspector for water damage and mold growth.

Professional Inspection and Monitoring for Water Damage and Mold

The best way to tell if you have water damage and mold growth in your home is to call on the services of a professional inspection service.  In the greater LA area, the premiere home inspection company that offers these services is FunGuy Inspections.  Mold, mildew, water damage, and even lead, and asbestos can all be detected by FunGuy Inspections, who can then provide remediation advice and information as well.  FunGuy Inspections uses the latest technology and equipment, and has extremely well-trained expert team members, who will help ensure you know what’s going on in your home – even behind the walls and under floors – and can take appropriate action to fix the problem.  For more information, visit https://funguyinspections.com/.

How to Deal With Your Damaged Skylights

How to Deal With Your Damaged Skylights

Everyone loves sunlight. It helps your home evoke a better mood. However, it cannot be sunny all year round. When the rainy season sets in, you must accept the fact that your home cannot always be in a good condition. All homes are susceptible to damages such as water leaks as the weather changes. Skylights, for instance. Though they add appeal and elegance to the overall aesthetic of your home, they are prone to weather-incurred damages. So if you happen to notice that your skylights are not functioning like they had in the past, you must act immediately.

The moment you find out that your skylights have stains caused by possible water leaks, here are some of the actions you can take.

•    Identify Where the Leak Is Coming From

It’s hard to notice that your skylight had already been suffering from excessive condensation.  It is often caused by water dripping from the leaks in your roof. If you don’t have any specialized knowledge about this and you are not confident of your skills, try contacting a professional that can do the inspections for you.

•    It Is Not Sealed Properly

Skylights, if not correctly sealed, can lead to water leaking inside your home. Use specific sealants that can seal any cracks on your skylights. There are many types of sealants available in the market, do ask an expert for some advice. Also, you can try researching for tips on the Internet to help you pick the best.

•    Double Check Your Flashings

Double check the flashing around your skylight. Perhaps, the material that stops the water from leaking between your shingles and skylights are already damaged. If so, replace it immediately.

•    Your Skylights are Broken

It’s easy to notice a broken skylights. You don’t need to be an expert to know that this kind of issue has no other solution than a total replacement.

•    Roofing Issues

If your skylights are exquisite and sealed correctly in its place and the flashings are okay, but there are still leaks, then you might need to check your roof for some issues.

You have two (2) options when dealing with your roof issues. One, you can replace it with a new one, or you can repair it.

Dealing with damaged skylights is easy and will keep you out trouble if you take action immediately.  

With the simple tips listed above, it can help you save your property and your pocket from further hassles! If you still have no idea where to start or you don’t have time to do it yourself, you can hire professionals to help you with your skylight and roofing problems. With the experts, rest assured that the job can be completed immediately and efficiently.  

To relieve yourself from the stress of this property problem, seek help from Fun Guy Inspections and Consulting, LLC. We can help you fix your damaged skylights and more. For more information, visit our website: https://funguyinspections.com/ or contact us today to book an appointment: (866) 674-7541.

Patient death due to mold

Seattle Children’s hospital revealed Tuesday that one patient has died and five others have been infected by a potentially dangerous mold that has forced the medical center to indefinitely close all of its main operating rooms.

The revelation shows the problem at the prestigious hospital was more extensive than officials there had previously acknowledged publicly.

The hospital disclosed the infections and death to The Seattle Times in response to follow-up questions regarding the closures of four operating rooms on its main Seattle campus May 18 because of Aspergillus mold and of the remaining 10 operating rooms May 24.

The hospital says operating rooms have been infested by mold — off and on — for about a year likely because of deficiencies in the operating rooms’ air handling and purification systems.

Three patients were infected last year and three this year, Children’s public-relations manager Alyse Bernal wrote in an email. The patient who died developed the infection in 2018.

“The six patients who developed Aspergillus infections were at higher risk of infection due to the types of procedures they had,” Bernal said. “We are deeply saddened that one of these patients died.”

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) sent a letter to Children’s administration on June 20 saying the hospital is out of compliance. The report sent with the letter highlights a number of problems, which included issues with the “air handlers serving the operating rooms.” The letter states that CMS will terminate Children’s Medicare provider agreement on Sept. 19.

About 1,000 surgeries have been postponed. Other surgeries have been moved to the cardiac catheterization facility on the hospital’s main campus in Seattle and its Bellevue campus. Most surgeries have been moved to Harborview Medical Center, University of Washington Medical Center, Swedish Medical Center and Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital in Tacoma.

Harborview has taken on 70 surgeries and UW Medical Center has taken on 15, said Susan Gregg, spokesperson for both hospitals. Absorbing the extra surgeries has taken some thoughtful planning and coordination, she said.

Mary Bridge didn’t say how many surgeries are being performed in its facilities. Swedish said it is still working to determine how many surgeries it can take on.

Aspergillus is a common mold found outdoors and indoors, and people breathe it daily without getting sick, according to the CDC. But people with lung disease or weakened immune systems, and especially organ or stem-cell-transplant patients, are at higher risk of developing aspergillosis, a disease caused by the mold. Aspergillosis can range from mild to serious, manifesting as an allergic reaction or infections in the lungs and other organs.

Hospital patients are typically infected when dust is stirred up during renovation or construction at a hospital, or through contaminated biomedical devices.

he six infections at Children’s are believed to be caused by problems in the facility’s air handling and purification systems, which serve the main operating rooms. An investigation conducted in May by Children’s found gaps in the air-filtration system believed to be the key contributing factors to the air-quality issue, Bernal wrote in an email. “Outside industrial hygienists” are helping the hospital investigate the source of the mold, she wrote.

Last June, after air testing at Children’s detected the mold in two operating rooms and an equipment-storage room, those rooms were closed for three days and all operating rooms and storage rooms were inspected, Bernal wrote. “At that time, the issue appeared to be confined to the affected rooms and we took appropriate corrective actions,” she wrote.

Children’s reached out at the time to Public Health — Seattle & King County, which, in turn, connected the hospital to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) because the federal agency had more expertise dealing with that kind of mold, public health spokesperson James Apa said. The CDC issued no report after it determined Children’s was taking appropriate actions to investigate and address the problem, Apa said. Washington state Department of Health (DOH) investigators also checked out the hospital and offered suggestions on how to improve air quality, which the hospital followed, Bernal wrote.

But the mold returned in 2019. In mid-May, it was detected in four operating rooms and some equipment-storage rooms during a routine check, Bernal said.

After the hospital closed the four operating rooms May 18, some “urgent and less invasive procedures” were performed in the remaining 10 operating rooms, Bernal wrote in an email to The Times on Tuesday.

Six days later, those operating rooms were also closed. Bernal said the additional closures were needed so crews could access and fix the hospital’s air system. She would not say whether mold was detected in those rooms.

“We will reopen our operating rooms when it is safe to do so,” Bernal wrote in an email. Children’s has not yet determined when that will be.

Bernal told The Times in May that Children’s was contacting 3,000 patients who had surgery in the four months leading up to the May 18 closure and advising them to watch for infection symptoms. Symptoms for invasive aspergillosis include a fever, chest pain, coughing up blood and shortness of breath.

Since May, Children’s has switched to an updated and sanitized air handler, installed a new humidification system, sealed potential sources of air leaks in operating rooms, cleaned all the affected spaces several times and implemented new cleaning processes, Children’s spokesperson Kathryn Mueller wrote in an email to The Times on Sunday.

https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/health/1-patient-dies-5-others-infected-by-mold-that-closed-seattle-childrens-hospital-operating-rooms/

Allergies, mold, and more

Sneezing Pollen Allergy Away!

It is a beautiful day and you decided to talk a walk outside. Yet, suddenly you feel stuffed up, your nose gets itchy and your eyes are watery. You thought it was just a temporary feeling or maybe the beginning of a cold.  Without realizing you just were exposed to the pollens, molds and allergens from the outdoors. Making your day drag on and feel as if you were in a bubble under water.

Getting to know these little allergens . . .

Described as very fine powder produced from trees, flowers and some weeds, pollen happened to receive sundry responses from people clearly unnoticing they are always inhaled. Apparently, with people identified as having pollen allergies, their immune system is triggered from what once was considered as “harmless” pollen. Pollen reactions usually ranges from mild, truly irritating to the life-threatening case.

“Hay fever” is another term referring to pollen allergy. Experts, however, uses the term “seasonal allergic rhinitis” describing how plants release pollen every spring, summer, and fall. 

Allergy and mold testing in Los Angeles

Preventing these pollen intruders

De-stressing the system from pollen allergies can include:

1.    Drying clothes in clothes dryer rather than an outdoor clothing line

2.    Limiting outdoor activities especially on seasons when pollen count is high

3.    Washing of beddings once in a week

4.    Wearing mask, or sunglasses to protect oneself from pollen

5.    Washing of used clothes from outdoor activities

Defending your body from pollen allergies

People taking medications from pollen allergy were described as not getting full relief even after undergoing such. However, the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America cited below some of the prescribed medicines in an attempt to counter pollen allergies:

A.    Decongestants

–    Decongestants include pills, liquid nasal drops or even sprays. These help the person relieve from nasal dampness and the feeling of stuffiness.

B.    Antihistamines

–    Antihistamine takes the same form as decongestants. It is commonly used to relieve from constant itching of the nose and eyes.

C.    Allergy Shots, Subcutaneous Immunotherapy (SCIT)

–    SCIT is considered a long-lasting reliever from any kind of allergies which include allergy from pollen. These basically come with a series of shots containing a large amount of allergen. People taking such depicted how SCIT gave them complete relief from one to three years of using it.

D.    Sublingual Immunotherapy

–    Sublingual Immunotherapy involves a process of placing a tablet under the tongue, giving it enough time to melt before swallowing it. It is also a recommended alternative for allergy shots or the SCIT.

Inhaling the pollen-free air

Fun Guy Inspection and Consulting, LLC offers great deal services of testing molds, pollens and other particulates indoors by testing the quality of air so you and your family can be safe even at home.

Consider an indoor air quality evaluation by a professional. Fun Guy Inspections can also offer suggestions that will help reduce indoor particulates and increase filtering of these allergy triggers.

Mold is a known allergy trigger to most individuals. Discover where hidden sources of mold maybe hiding in your home with a Mold Inspection and water damage inspection by a Fun Guy Certified Mold Professional. 866-674-7541 Los Angeles Mold Inspections

Sink of the Month

It may not happen often, but every once in a while a mold inspector finds an extreme mold problem. Brought on by deferred maintenance and time moisture came from the eventual deterioration of the waterproofing seals (silicone) between the sink and the countertop.

Daily usage of sinks and shower can create a moisture problem that slowly grow every day. Recorded levels of moisture in the building materials can be as high as 99.0%. For black mold, that is the perfect environment to grow.

All the black color is mold

It did take some time for the water to damage these materials, but here you can see how moisture created black mold and eventual disintegration of the materials.

Below a homeowner tried to stop water from creating a major water damage and mold problem. Many types of sinks have inherent design flaws that allow water intrusion to ruin your home and create mold growth. The Tupper ware has become a reservoir to catch the water created from using the kitchen sink on a daily basis. Most new models of sink have a pull out spray nozzle. When spraying the surface of dishes small water droplets collect on the surface of the spray cord. Eventual condensation of moisture droplets occurs on the surface of the metal sheating and drips below the kitchen sink. Ever notice a funky smell coming from your kitchen sink cabinet? This is mostly a result of some type of water damage and possible mold growth.

Sink of the month creates water damage and mold in your home. Take action now and fight mold, allergens, and health problems today!

Don’t wait, prevent mold growth and water damage by contacting FunGuy Mold Inspections in Los Angeles 818-745-6653 (mold).

Pin It on Pinterest