Moisture evaluating is the action taken to locate excess moisture in building materials. Once the excess moisture is located, it is then documented and evaluated to create the proper credentials so that the drying and/or removal process can begin. During this process, the source of the excess moisture is found, controlled, and all signs of effected building materials are contained and disposed.
The moisture detection process is very important to start as soon as signs are found because moisture on building materials can cause mold formation and eventually structural deterioration. Excess moisture can deteriorate roofing systems, flooring, and the structural integrity of buildings and homes. In many cases the health of those who live amongst the areas of excess moisture, develop health problems due to the growth of mold. There are many health related risks associated to mold exposure which creates a great importance to solving excess moisture issues as promptly as possible.
Moisture is one of the key factors that needs to be present in order for mold to form as well as temperature (heat) and a food source. Mold needs a source of moisture in order to germinate and to maintain growth. That is why it is extremely important to take action when you see the first sign of a moisture issues.
There are many different types of structural materials that attract moisture that cause mold. The most obvious materials that grow mold are wood, fabrics such as cotton, and drywall. More unexpected materials that are susceptible to mold growth are metal, plastic, and concrete. As long as the growing conditions are favorable to mold, it will grow.
It is best to assume that as soon as building materials come in contact with moisture either from a flood, spill, or leak, that mold is going to form. Very frequently in the mold industry, companies consider themselves “emergency response” because water damage is an emergency not only because your belongings become wet, but because the presence of moisture will cause mold.
Signs of excess moisture are:
- Stains on ceilings
- Musty odors
- Unexplained water sightings
- Peeling and cracking paint
- Warped wood
Places where excess moisture are commonly found:
- Under kitchen sinks
- Crawl spaces
- Under appliances
- Air conditioning units
Even though there are ways to visually identify moisture issues with the human eye, the source and scope of moisture issues are often hidden and special equipment is needed to aid in the detection process. Standard moisture detection equipment that is used include a few different versions of moisture meters and infrared thermal imaging cameras. The results of using this equipment is far more detailed and measurable when determining where moisture is coming from,
The moisture evaluations from using the thermal imaging cameras and moisture meters are then used in the process called moisture mapping. Moisture mapping is basically the assessment of the results from using the equipment and the mapping out of where the moisture is coming from and the levels of moisture each area holds.
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