When most people think of household mold,they envision basements or windowsills orattics. Every homeowner knows that mold is ahealth threat, and every homeowner knows thatit must be controlled, but not all homeownersknow that it could also be lurking within yourHVAC system.
What is HVAC?HVAC is an acronym that stands for “Heating,Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. It refers to the varioustypes of equipment that are responsible for the heating,cooling and ventilation of homes and businesses.HVAC systems are designed to monitor and regulatethe temperature and air flow within the building, soeveryone inside is comfortable. The programmedtemperature is maintained by HVAC sensors, and if aproblem occurs with the sensors, the whole system maymalfunction.
Dangers of Mold in HVACMold is a living organism that requires moisture to growand multiply. Mold feeds on just about any substance,including wood, carpet, drywall and anything else thatgets in its path.A forced-air HVAC system is a great vehicle to helpspread mold throughout your home or business, whichis why it is so important to check the system on aregular basis.If you allow a mold outbreak in the HVAC system, thesame thing that is providing you comfort is alsospreading the mold around.
Dangers cont…Some of the common dangers of mold exposureinclude:• headaches• allergic reactions similar to hay fever• skin irritation• asthma• sensitivity to other allergens
Check for MoistureIn order to keep any mold in your HVAC system undercontrol, it’s important to check for moisture regularly.Look for signs of moisture in:• Drain lines• Coils• Condensate pans• HVAC ducts• Blowers• Air handlers• Plenums
Steps to TakeIf you have a feeling or see evidence of moisture and/ormold in the HVAC system, it’s important to take actionbefore the problem gets out of hand. Mold can startgrowing within 48 hours, so keep these steps in mind:• Turn off the HVAC system• Use a proper N-95 respirator or higher if cleaning mold• Remove standing water with a wet vac and fix anyleaks in the system• Isolate each areas after cleaning so mold sporesaren’t spread around• Clean all surfaces of mold, including non-porous
More Steps• Replace or throw away any materials that can’t be properly cleaned but are integral to the system• Replace materials that can’t be dried properly, including carpets, insulation or wallboard• Don’t hesitate to call in professionals if you feel like you can’t control the problem effectively
Scheduling MaintenanceScheduling regular maintenance is an integral part ofkeeping mold away and keeping your HVAC systemrunning well.With regular maintenance, equipment can be replacedand repaired when necessary, and moisture will neverbecome a serious issue.Take the time to schedule HVAC maintenance if it’sbeen a while, and then set up a schedule so you don’thave to worry.
AdviceKeystone Mechanical Group prides itself in providing exceptional residential, commercial and industrial HVAC services. For more information on their services, visit http://www.keystonemech.ca/.