Two Different but Related Processes
Yes, there is a difference between mold removal and mold remediation. These terms are often used interchangeably, but they refer to distinct processes when dealing with mold in buildings.
Mold removal focuses on the elimination of mold from an environment. The goal of mold removal is to physically remove all mold spores from an affected area. This process is somewhat misleading in its name because it’s virtually impossible to remove all mold spores from an indoor environment since some spores are always present in the air and on surfaces. However, mold removal aims to remove as much visible and hidden mold as possible.
An example of where mold removal might be used in place of mold remediation, is where mold and mildew only affect the surface of various items (a fridge, the inside of a fridge, a bathtub or shower), or where a building is going to be gutted for renovations.
Mold remediation is a more comprehensive approach to solving mold issues. Remediation not only includes the removal of mold from an environment but also involves identifying and addressing the underlying causes of the mold growth, such as moisture problems. The process of mold remediation typically includes the following steps:
- Inspection and assessment to determine the extent of the mold infestation and locate the source of moisture.
- Containment of the affected area to prevent the spread of mold spores during the cleanup process.
- Air filtration to capture airborne mold spores.
- Removal and disposal of mold-infested materials that cannot be cleaned or salvaged.
- Cleaning, disinfecting, and treating surfaces to kill and remove mold.
- Drying of the area to ensure that no moisture remains.
- Repair and restoration of the structure, which may include replacing drywall, baseboards, and other materials that were removed.
The key difference is that remediation seeks to return mold levels to normal, natural levels and addresses the moisture source to prevent future mold growth, whereas removal is just the act of eliminating the mold.
It’s important to note that mold can be a health hazard and cause structural damage to buildings. Therefore, professional assessment and remediation are often recommended to ensure that mold issues are properly addressed.