How to Get Rid of Mold Spores in the Air in the Workplace
Learn the steps you can take to mitigate the mold issues and how to get rid of mold spores in the air at your workplace.
Do you have mold in your commercial building or school that keeps coming back again and again?
Unfortunately, if mold is a reoccurring problem, you won’t be able to eliminate it long-term until you can reduce the mold spores in the air. How can you accomplish this and prevent this health risk as effectively as possible? What is the best strategy for managing mold spores in a commercial building?
Fortunately, even if mold has been an issue in your building, there are steps you can take to mitigate the problem. You can do many things to significantly reduce the number of airborne mold spores in your workplace.
In this article, we’ll cover why simply removing mold from surfaces isn’t enough, the health risk mold presents, and how to get rid of mold spores in the air at your workplace, which can pose a dangerous threat to the health and wellness of your employees.
Is Your Workplace a Dangerous Breeding Ground for Mold?
Mold is a naturally occurring fungus that grows and feeds on moisture. It is resilient, and it will flourish in almost any moist place. Mold growth in the early stages will look like spots and may grow into a fuzzy-looking covering. It can appear in many different colors, and it may smell musty.
In a commercial building, mold can grow in bathrooms and kitchens, as well as in storage rooms or around air conditioners or humidifiers. It can also grow in your HVAC ducts, where it can be easily spread throughout the building. If you have a cafeteria or staff kitchen, you may see mold building up around the sinks or behind the refrigerator.
If you can see the mold, you already have a significant problem. When there is enough mold present to be visible, it’s crucial to act to safeguard the health of anyone within the building.
The reality is that no matter what you do, there will always be a small amount of mold present in the air in any building. You can clean the surfaces and remove the visible mold, but if there are spores in the air and favorable conditions, they will return.
If you find that your commercial building has an issue with mold continuing to return, again and again, you likely have a high level of mold spores in the air. If you want to remove mold once and for all, the focus should be on removing mold spores from the air.
What Makes a Commercial Building Prone to Mold?
Multiple factors might make your commercial building more susceptible to mold, such as:
- The Age of The Building: Most commercial buildings, schools, and offices built in the 1970s, 80s, and 90s have significant problems with mold. The poor-quality construction standards of the time created a breeding ground for these dangerous fungi.
- Lack of Ventilation: Poor ventilation within a building will lead to condensation. This creates more moisture for mold to feed off and the perfect environment for it to flourish.
- Building Materials: Another major factor is the materials your commercial building is made from. Some building materials hold moisture more than others. For example, particleboard and MDF can be problematic because they trap moisture & provide an environment where mold can grow.
Who is Most at Risk?
While mold can have adverse health effects on anyone exposed to it, it is hazardous to children, the elderly, and people with heart problems or respiratory conditions. Also, people with asthma may have trouble breathing when exposed to mold.
Mold is also hazardous for anyone who has a suppressed immune system. They will be at an increased risk for fungal infections when they breathe the mold spores into their lungs.
Sometimes severe allergic reactions to mold can occur, including fever and shortness of breath. Sometimes, the health impacts can be long-term and take months or even years to present themselves.
If you discover a mold problem in the workplace, it’s important to let anyone who may have been exposed know about the risk as soon as possible. Consider allowing teams to work from home until the mold has been removed and the air quality has been tested and safe.
How To Eliminate Mold from Your Workplace
The following are proactive steps you can take to remove mold spores in the air. These measures will help prevent mold growth on surfaces and avoid illnesses caused by breathing in mold spores.
- Make Building Repairs As Soon As Possible: If repairs are needed on your commercial building, such as unsealed or cracked windows, foundation damage, or leaky roofs, this can cause significant mold problems. Make repairs right away to prevent any problem areas from becoming dangerous.
- Store Paper Materials in a Dry Environment: Mold can thrive in damp paper products, such as in a school's library or the paper file storage room of an office building. Check these areas regularly and make sure they are kept clean and dry.
- Regularly Clean the Humidifier: If you use a humidifier in an office or classroom, replace the filters and clean them regularly.
- ActivePure Induct: One of the most effective ways to eliminate mold spores is by installing the ActivePure Induct system. ActivePure technology is designed to eliminate more than 99% of particles in the air, including mold, bacteria, viruses, and pathogens.
If the mold has covered an area larger than 10 square feet, don’t try to clean it yourself. It’s best to contact a professional mold remediation provider who can handle the issue safely.
Once the mold has been completely removed, it’s essential to develop a long-term plan for mold management. Using purification technology to remove mold spores from the air and keeping all areas and surfaces clean and dry to discourage mold growth will be your best strategy for keeping the problem under control.