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Services Overview -- Part 3 -- Treating the Problem and Preventing a Recurrence

C.  Correctives


Too often, corrective actions, if any, are more likely to be cosmetic than curative. The common mis perception is that wiping or washing a mold covered or other infected area with some sort of bleach ingredient cleaner will take care of the problem which can then be followed by a fresh coat of paint in more extreme cases. In both instances the assumption seems to be that if the color goes away the mold goes away. Somehow we believe that what we cannot see cannot then exist. Unfortunately, such is not the case.

In reality, bleach may cause the ugly color of mold to go away, but even strong household bleach products are usually insufficient to even pierce the extremely hardy shell of the mold spore, much less kill it or turn off its reproductive capabilities. The irony created by adding paint is that we merely cover over the spores with a high moisture, cellulose-rich product which cuts off the anaerobic fungi from fresh air! When mold shows up again, which it inevitably must under those circumstances, we cry, “It’s back!” Truth is, it never really left. Real corrective action must be taken to achieve satisfactory results.

Some of the mold products are fairly environmentally safe.  Others are known to be quite toxic.  Toxic or not, most will leave a residue of some sort. Irrespective of their relative safety, whether the mold killing ingredient is wiped on, sponged on, mopped on, sprayed on, blown on,  or applied in some other manner, in order to be effective the agent must actually come into contact with the mold/mold spores in sufficient quantity and with sufficient dwell time to soften the shell, penetrate the cell, and deactivate or kill the mold or mold spore. Any area of mold or cluster of mold spores not physically coming into contact with the mold killing agent or product will not be adversely affected and brought under control.  To the extent that such is the case, the potential for recurring outbreaks exists.
Unprotected worker at risk
Unprotected worker, oblivious to his own and the building's danger.
Once the source of mold or microbial infection has been found and the contributing causes addressed, it is time to rid the structure of the accumulated problem. Especially with mold, this must be done very cautiously, for carelessness at this stage can not only fail to kill the existing mold but can also fail to capture the disturbed mold spores which are designed to rapidly disperse by the billions upon any movement or commotion, spreading almost instantaneously to other parts of the building. A mishap at this point can be disastrous for all parties concerned.


a. Discussions below do not include other safety issues as to the treatment of hazardous materials and removal procedures for construction materials, furnishings, household items, personal effects, or any other item/s or component/s tainted by or suspected of being infected with mold and/or mold spores and/or mold by-products and/or other pathogenic contaminants.
Haz-Mat Suit and Mask
b. Neither are specific protocols addressed regarding the dress and breathing protection of workers or other personnel who might at some point come into contact with mold and/or mold spores and/or mold by-products or mold infected materials and/or other pathogenic contaminants of any type or sort.

CAUTION: Exclusion of the areas of information in any way related to the two previous enumerated sentences above IN NO WAY implies, suggests, condones, or recommends ANY contact with mold and/or mold or microbial infected materials by any other than professionals trained and practiced in the best and latest methodologies for protecting themselves and others. The information following ONLY deals with the actual mechanical or technical procedures as set forth below — apart from personal safety protections and concerns — as a way of familiarizing the public with the options available should any type of mold or microbial treatment be necessary.

    2.  The Options

For smoke and odor issues, the idea of filtering enough air to clear it is almost laughable, yet, until recently, that was all that was available. At best, all that can be achieved with this method is diluting the problem sufficiently that it becomes less noticeable -- followed by or accompanied with the introduction of a counter scent to offset the smell of the smoke or offending odor.  

For microbial infestations, until of late we have used refined and/or synthesized chemicals which have given rise to increasingly resistant strains of infections.

Mold related drywall and other building repairs fall under the classification of remediation. "Remediation" is a word which encompasses everything required to bring a structure and its indoor environment back to the condition which existed before mold became an issue. Obviously, the greater the extent of the infestation and/or damage, the more remediative work is required to return things to normal.

To understand the efficacy and superiority of Mold and/or Air Sanitization, it is first necessary to be familiar with the strengths and weaknesses of the conventional protocols.

a. Standard (“Conventional”) Protocol -- Ox cart technologies in a space age world.
Conventional Protocol

If the only mode of transportation available were still the ox cart, it would make sense to use it as often as possible.  But where newer, better, faster, less cumbersome technologies exist and are easily and economically obtained, it seems strange to hold onto old methods and ways -- especially when the life and health of vast populations are at stake, as they are with indoor air quality issues.

(1) The Procedures of Conventional Protocol are these.

Conventional remediation protocol has existed since at least Older Testament times, as evidenced in the book of Leviticus 14:33-48. Basically, conventional methods had to do with identification of the problem, removal of the occupants once the problem was diagnosed, removal of the offending materials, replacing elements which had been removed, checking/testing again for the effectiveness of the repairs, and destruction of the whole building if the problem persisted. Of course, we have added some modern twists with the technology more recently available, but otherwise there are great similarities from ancient times to today.

While as currently practiced and as set forth below, under certain circumstances there may well be other steps involved, but at no time should the order of chronology of the items immediately presented ever be changed.

They at all times include, among others —

(a) Immediately upon recognition or confirmation of a mold problem and BEFORE the commencement of any type of mold abatement or remediation program — the evacuation of any and all environs of any breathing species from all areas connected by air space to the affected area/s. In the event that an affected area is in any type of multi-family or multi-unit structure, consideration may well also include the evacuation of all units physically connected with the affected unit. At the very least, out of courtesy, if not release of culpability, notification of what is happening should be made to the other residents of the building as soon as it becomes known.
Remediation in progress


Following evacuation comes the removal of moisture/mold affected drywall and construction components by proper industry-recognized procedures.

Remediation professional at work with convention protocol
After comes the proper cleansing or purging of the exposed cavity areas with a mold wash approved for the particular materials to be cleansed.

Only after items (a) - (c) above and any other related steps - lastly comes the installation of new construction materials, including, but not limited to, drywall or plaster to meet the surrounding surfaces, and the taping, finishing, texturing, and painting of the new drywall, et al, to match the existing.

The Prerequisites for Conventional Protocol are these.

Physical and cosmetic issues are not all that need to be considered. Before any actual conventional treatment or remediation is to be undertaken, standard protocol for dealing with actual or suspected mold infected/infested areas must include, at the very least –

Remediation containment space
a properly constructed containment area to be erected around the area/s slated for remediation PRIOR TO ANY DISTURBANCE OR REMOVAL OF AFFECTED MATERIALS.

Remediation "air scrubbers" (a/k/a "vacuums")
Regardless of the names given to them, "air scrubbers" are just glorified vacuum cleaners.
(b) Immediately after the erection of the containment area and PRIOR TO ANY DISTURBANCE OR REMOVAL OF AFFECTED MATERIALS, air “scrubbers” or ventilation equipment must be temporarily installed within the containment area/s.
(c) Negative air pressure must be established on the inside of the containment area/s whereby a “vacuum” or air deficiency is created within the contaminated area/s which draws air from the theoretically non-contaminated portions of the building into the affected area/s and from there to the outside.

"Air scrubbing" (vacuum piping)
Closed system ventilation from the containment area/s to the exterior of the building must allow for contaminated air to be exited outside of the living space and well away from occupied spaces. Such ventilation may or may not include some effort to filter out and contain the mold spores from the contaminated air before expulsion outside.

(3) The PRO’s of this protocol are as follows.
(a) It is necessary so that any mold spores in the affected areas are removed from their situs and expelled outside the dwelling so that further mold contamination of non-mold infested areas within the structure does not take place.
(b) It is necessary for the safety of the workers so that their exposure to potential mold spores and subsequent infection is minimized.
(4) The CON’s of this protocol are based upon its inherent limitations and flaws.
(a) While it conforms with standard protocol, it is yesterday’s technology and does not represent the Best Available Today’s Technology (BATT), the higher technological, moral, and legal playing ground one would wish to be on should litigation become an issue.
(b) While it is designed to lessen the probability, it cannot with surety preclude cross-contamination of the remaining occupied spaces or other structurally connected areas.
(c) It does not provide the highest level of safety for the workers.
(d) Along with being inferior, it does not necessarily represent the most cost-effective option available. In fact, almost without exception, it does not.
b. Superior Protocol -- Introduction to "BATT" (Best Available Today's Technology) -- For Mold, Odor, and Microbial Abatement.
Superior Protocol

The standard remediation protocol of “seek and destroy” which must remove anything at all affected with mold (plus an additional safety margin of eighteen inches of material beyond the furthest evidence of mold) is necessary because mold and mold spores are extremely hardy and resist conventional methodologies and products. With so much demolition taking place, it is both time and resource consuming.

For microbial infestations, the protocols have been far less precise and effective. In fact, for pathogens, the very chemicals employed to defeat them have actually caused mutations which have made many of them either resistant to or impervious to the products used to control them.  But until recently, no viable alternative existed.

For smoke and odor abatement, as mentioned above, whatever was not to some degree filtered or diluted usually has wound up being covered up or masked by a stronger, hopefully less offensive smell.

Thankfully, by closely examining the forces designed in nature to do the job so well that life has been and can continue to be sustained in the face of constant use and pollution, the technology now exists which brings into the indoor environment those same forces with similar efficacy for all the IAQ issues we face.

(1) Superior to the above conventional protocol is a procedure called “mold sanitization” or "air sanitization", a proprietary process which uniquely duplicates indoors the same processes designed and found in nature to kill virtually all existing mold/microbes and kill/sterilize most, if not all, mold spores. This combination of technologies has proven to be as effective as or more than that of the standard conventional mold remediation, takes far less time, inconveniences (and displaces) for a much shorter period (which alone can represent a substantial savings), costs anywhere from the same to substantially less than conventional remediation, and is accomplished by the following.
These have to have their DNA/RNA inactivated.
Up to 250,000 of these mold spores can fit on the head of a pin.

(a) As with the standard protocol, immediately upon recognition or confirmation of a mold or microbial problem and BEFORE the commencement of any mold sanitization, there should be the removal of all people, pets, and living plants from the affected/treatment area/s. This has as much to do with their protecting them from mold exposure as it does with having them absent during the sanitization itself.

NOTE: Should the living space to be treated be part of a multi-family or multi-unit structure, adjacent occupants should at least, out of courtesy, be told what will be happening and what to expect. Usually, unless there is a serious cross ventilation problem between units (as in a very rare shared HVAC system), there will not likely be a need for neighbors to be vacated during the procedure.
(b) All room doors, closet doors, cupboard and cabinet doors, and bureau drawers are opened and left ajar. Switch plates and outlet covers are removed wherever possible to create entrance openings into the wall cavities. Paintings, pictures, and other wall coverings are best removed and kept off the walls until the sanitization procedure is completed. Ideally, beds are stripped, curtains pulled back, pillows stood up, clutter removed, and the entire occupied space made tidy. All ceiling and other fans are turned on (backwards, if possible, where the flow of air is caused to go UP around the centers of the rooms and descends down around the perimeters) and the HVAC or furnace is set between 70° and 75° F. If there is a humidifier or humidistat, it is set between 50% and 60% relative humidity. All these things are done to facilitate maximum circulation and penetration of and optimal conditions for the oxidizing plasmas.
(c) Simultaneously, a patented process introduces a plasma of ions and multiple friendly oxidizers into the living space. Any one of these oxidizers is powerfully beneficial on its own, but the effect of them together is unparalleled, even to the point of being able to infiltrate behind wall cavities to strip the very hardy outer shells off of mold spores, fungi, and numerous other pathogens and contaminants, either efficiently killing them or rendering them very susceptible to destruction if any are still viable after initial contact with the plasma.
(d) Additional technology generates a high level of naturally occurring penetrating oxidation gases which attack the nuclei of the now exposed cells, either fully killing the pathogenic cell, or, as in the case of mold spores, affecting the RNA and the DNA of the spores so that they cannot reproduce. (While science cannot agree as to whether such a spore is technically “dead” or alive, there is agreement that neutered cells cannot proliferate and create mold colonies.)

(2) This patented combination of pro-active technologies has been shown in university studies to have a kill rate from at least 99.9% to as high as six log (99.9999%) of surface laden pathogens within 10 - 12 hours (as high as 100% in the case of tested viruses). It is also so effective at cleansing the area of particulates – the tiny dust and skin particles often revealed in direct sunlight which bear germs, viruses, bacteria, etc., through the air and into our lungs – that no private or governmental agency has so far been successful in designing a protocol to test the air’s purity, since all existing protocols measure the vitality of germs on the particles in the air – missing with this process.
(3) The sanitization procedure is typically run for seventy-two (72) hours but may run longer based upon the total volume of air space and the estimated level of mold, pathogens, or odors in the structure, giving every opportunity for the maximum effectiveness of the oxidization of all contaminants within the building’s envelope.
(4) Once the proprietary sanitization equipment has been shut down and removed, any surfaces where the old mold colony/ies may have been visibly present can be cleansed with an effective non-toxic mold cleaning solution without risk to the worker/s. Unless mold has structurally compromised a construction member or it cannot be aesthetically made whole by resurfacing/repainting, etc., constructive replacement is seldom required. Cleanup is typically effected by normal housekeeping procedures. Any other specialty cleanup of the area is done when warranted, usually with the aid of a HEPA rated commercial vacuum cleaner.  Because of the ionization which has occurred during the sanitization process (where small particles have become attracted to one another), even the tiniest (>.003 microns) have clumped together and can at this point be effectively caught by a viable HEPA filter.
(5) Those surfaces which can be repainted are covered with a mold-resistant and stain-blocking primer and a mold controlling premium interior/exterior paint (usually 100% acrylic or other mold-resistant coating). The paint and primer should also be non-toxic, fire-retardant, have zero VOC’s, and carry at least a 10-year mold-free warranty.

Your swimming pool can teach you a lesson
about the air you breathe.
Swimming Pool Gone Bad Like swimming pools, which we expect to be pristine and clear, our indoor air quality, especially in a closed system, can go just as bad and be even worse. Unfortunately, unlike the pool, the air does not turn color to let us know that it has turned south on us and is hurting our health.

As with the pool, when the situation has gotten this bad, routine maintenance or fixes will not make things good again.
Mold sanitization works similarly to "shocking" a swimming pool.  It raises the oxidizers in the air to a level which effectively overwhelms the pathogens, microbes, mold spores, and numerous viruses which have taken over the air space and kills them and rids them from the air we breathe. Bad Swimming Pool Got Better
As with the pool, once the air has been effectively sanitized ("shocked"), a treatment system should be installed to keep the air from ever turning on us again under normal circumstances.  These background active air purifiers can also be selectively bumped up to a "turbo" mode while we are away from the air space for two to eight hours to give the air an extra cleansing or purifying boost.

E. Ongoing Prevention and Indoor Air Quality Program
No Mold Allowed
1. Following the sanitization procedure, it is important to remember that mold and other pathogenic growth can and does take place if the following conditions exist —
a. sufficient relative moisture or humidity,
Temperature/humidity guage
b. favorable temperature ranges,
c. the availability of food sources (found in virtually all modern building materials),
d. improper or insufficient ventilation and air circulation, and
e. the continued presence of newly introduced viable mold spores or microbes/viruses.
2. Once inside, those spores or pathogens would naturally breed and proliferate if they can find four things – 
a. a food supply (for mold and most pathogens, cellulose, which is just about everything of which the interior structure and the contents are comprised),
b. temperatures above 60 degrees F,
c. moisture in excess of about 50% relative humidity, and
d. surfaces without direct sunlight.
3. Active Pure Technology helps keep our indoor environments fresh, clean, and safe.Therefore, it is reasonable to assume that, even after an initial mold, microbial, or smoke problem has been sanitized, there exists the potential for such a problem to come back at another time, howbeit in not necessarily as virulent a form. Therefore, proactive steps need to be taken to prevent the recurrence of such outbreaks and to assure safe indoor air quality in the future. They employ the same technologies as those used for sanitization but scaled back to a preventative level. These pro-active steps include at minimum the following.

a. Installed in the plenum above the coils of each A/C unit should be an  indexed device which utilizes the RCI™ (“Radiant Catalytic
Ionization™”) patented Technology. The purpose of the device is to purify and sanitize the interiors of the duct work system to prevent the buildup and proliferation of unwanted pathogens, molds, and fungi therein.  It also helps tremendously to control smoke and other odors.
b. Fresh Air(TM)Depending upon the total volume of air to be purified, at least one portable device utilizing Radial Catalytic Ionization™ should be placed strategically within the occupied structure as part of an ongoing air purification and sanitization program. Used correctly and with sufficient air circulation, the Space Certified™ patented technology of each such a device can be adjusted or “tuned” for the space/s covered to kill and eliminate a host of airborne pathogens, contaminants, and odors.
c. Amazing germ killing odor eliminating power is found in the small and quiet Ecobox.Nature-based, germ killing, odor reducing, smoke eliminating RCI air purification technology comes in a smaller version for smaller spaces, quietly sending the active purification solution to the pollution, killing germs on surfaces that people touch and helping prevent the things people worry about.
4. Whisper quiet PHXSpectrum UVX(TM)
Smaller RCI™ related appliances can be installed in places like walk-in closets, water closets (they make great room deodorizers), and upper attic spaces to similarly protect and purify those spaces where air circulation is not as efficient as in other parts of the structure.
5. Specifics regarding these and other similar devices are to be found elsewhere on this website under solutions. Check with your Pro-active Environmental Technologies IAQ specialist to determine the choice and placement of the solutions you need to achieve the optimum indoor air quality you and your loved ones need and deserve.
The welcome and necessary addition of low voltage, low maintenance RCI™ equipment will not only achieve and keep the interior air as the "purest air on the planet", but it will also prevent any new mold spores, microbials, or other regularly introduced pollutants (such as smoke) from outside from being able to accumulate and reproduce, thus stopping any problem before it becomes one.

Along with the remarkable results achieved in the university studies, these units have also been shown to virtually eliminate the indoor odor and ill effects of Red Tide and other fungal blooms.

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Check out the videos
Check out the videos

Overview Topics

Services -- Part 1

A.  The Need for IAQ Services

It's a much-needed checkup for your building and the air you are breathing.


1. The Need for Mold Services

There's more than the appearance or lack of visible mold at stake.  It could be your health and life!


2. The Need for General and Specific IAQ Evaluation Services

What you are breathing is either helping you stay healthy or making you sick.


Services -- Part 2

B. Diagnostics -- Getting to the Source and Extent of the Problem go>>        

1. Visual Mold Inspection

Start with the obvious.  If you can see it, it must be taken away.


2. Surface Sampling

Not every discoloration is mold.  Better know the difference.  Can you tell?


Air Sampling

3. Air Sampling

It's what you can't see in the air  but are still breathing that can be the most harmful.  Here's how to check it out.


a. Active vs. Passive Air Sampling

Two ways to find out what's in the air and which is best.


(1) Passive Air Sampling

Waiting for the contaminates to decide to hit the target on their own.  Nice when it works, but how often is that?


(2) Active Air Sampling

It's about going after what is in the air so you really know what you are dealing with.


b. Two Types of Active Air Samplers

Specific ways to target specific contaminates.


(1) Total Particulates

Getting a count of everything that wants to go into your airways.


(2) Viable Colony Count

Besides being just downright obnoxious, how likely is what you are breathing going to cause an infestation or an infection?


4. Minimally Invasive Boroscope® Inspection

This is a chance to see what is going on inside wall cavities and other out-of-sight places.


5. Moisture Detection

Mold and pathogens, like us, need moisture.  Are we giving them an opportunity to thrive?


Services -- Part 3

C. Correctives

Knowing what is wrong is only part  of the battle.  Now let's explore our options for fixing the problem.


D. Abatement

When we talk about getting rid of mold, what are we really talking about?


1. Notice.

Venture into the Mold Zone only with extreme care and protective measures.


2. The Options

Is there only one way to proceed, and if there are alternatives, what are they and how effective can they be?


a. Standard ("Conventional") Protocol

-- Ox cart technology in a space age world.


(1) The Procedures of Conventional Protocol

If we are going to use yesterday's technology, let's at least do it the right way.


(2) The Prerequisites for Conventional Protocol

There are certain things that must be done FIRST before going after mold in the conventional way.


b. Superior Protocol 

Introduction to "BATT" (Best Available Today's Technology) 
For Mold, Odor, and Microbial Abatement.


E. Mold Prevention and Indoor Air Quality Programs

It's one thing to get rid of an existing problem, but do we want a repeat appearance?