Basement Waterproofing Expert
Charles Boday:
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CHAPTERS:


Chapter 1:
Wet Basements




"Ways Water Affects a Basement"





Chapter 2:
Waterproofing




"Inside Systems"
versus
"Outside Systems"





Chapter 3:
Outside Waterproofing




"Whats the Difference?"




Chapter 4:
Foundations




"Cracked, Bowed, and Bulging Walls"





Chapter 5:
Wall Builds/Rebuilds


rebuild.jpg

"Do It Right The First Time"





Chapter 6:
Mold


mold.jpg

"Is Your Wet Basement Making You Sick?"





Chapter 7:
Remodeling




"Want the Basement you Dream?"




Chapter 8:
Inspections




"How Do I Get My Basement Looked at Fast?"




Watch Our Movie:

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SUPER DRY BASEMENTSTM
(We Wrote The Book On Basement Waterproofing)        

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Chapter 6

Click Here To Visit Safe Mold Solutions

"Basement Mold"

So You’ve Got Mold in Your Basement? Now What?

Simple Strategies for Understanding and Correcting Basement Mold


THESE WALLS ARE HOLDING THOUSANDS OF GALLONS OF WATER!

Concrete walls can store up to thousands of gallons of water before ever showing physical signs, such as this display of obvious physical seepage.


Basement mold is extremely common in our Northern climate. Basement mold is generally directly attributable to a few basic causes:


  1. Failure of the builder to actually waterproof basement when built.

  2. Clogged drainage tiles.

  3. Failure of builder to install drainage pipes and a vapor barrier under the floor slab coupled with a high water table.

  4. Attached Crawl space with no vapor barrier and or coupled with wet crawl walls.


We will briefly discuss each problem and the appropriate remedy as well as covering the basic strategies offered in our area and why our systems are SUPERIOR to all of our so-called “competitors”.


By far the most common cause of all water problems is the failure of the builder to apply a waterproof rated product to the wall when the house is being built. It is a common misconception that smearing tar on the wall protects the wall from water and is in fact waterproof.

Wrong!

Have you ever known anyone that had an asphalt driveway?

How often did they Have-To Re- Seal it?


When I was a kid growing up two of my neighbors had an ongoing debate about their driveways. The first swore you needed to seal it every single year, and he did. The second one swore every two years was enough. I can still hear them arguing now in my mind’s eye… The sad truth is that according to the US Bureau of Standards asphalt sealants begin to break down in only 18 months, YIKES! You see the sad truth is they were both right! And these so called water-proofers charge an average of ten to fifteen grand just to dig up the basement and seal it again using what FAILED already.


You See Tar Has Never Been Rated as Waterproof


Did you know that in the building codes there are actually two separate definitions for damp-proofing (tar) and waterproofing. Damp proofing by definition means “something that helps to slow the penetration of water into the substrate”. HHMMM “helps to slow” sounds quite different than the definition of waterproofing “something that prevents the penetration of water” and further must pass a bending test where the membrane must be able to be bent around a cylinder.


Water proof sealants are almost all exclusively used and installed COMMERCIALLY…


That’s because they are more expensive. The extra costs are what stop the average contractor from offering you, the homeowner, a product that is effective and will last and “stand the test of time”.


HOW THE MOLD GROWS


Molds produce tiny spores to reproduce. Mold spores waft through the indoor and outdoor air continually. When mold spores land on a damp spot indoors, they may begin growing and digesting whatever they are growing on in order to survive. There are molds that can grow on wood, paper, carpet, fabric, and foods.  When excessive moisture or water accumulates indoors, mold growth will often occur, particularly if the moisture problem remains undiscovered or un-addressed. There is no practical way to eliminate all mold and mold spores in the indoor environment; the way to control indoor mold growth is to control moisture. This information was provided courtesy of the EPA in the pamphlet: "A Brief Guide to Mold, Moisture, and Your Home" [EPA 402-K-02-003]

In a basement the walls may not be leaking or puddling physically, yet the blocks can still be holding thousands of gallons of water. Both concrete blocks and terra cotta (red brick) tiles are hollow and can store potentially hundreds even thousands of gallons of water. This stored water often generates enough humidity to create spontaneous generation of mold. If the mold is visibly growing on concrete blocks, it actually isn’t. Mold’s only job is to de-compose or break down once living matter. This means: concrete, metal, glass, plastic, etc… are very poor mediums on which to grow mold. Mold will however grow on the fine dust that covers just about everything in a home. This dust, called bio-film, contains all sorts of things that were once alive (dead skin cells, dust mites, dust-mite feces, algae, etc...) The mold that grows on non-porous surfaces, using this dust or bio-film, is the only true surface-only mold that exists. When a mold grows on things that were once alive it sends its hyphae (roots) deep into the substrate on average at least 3/16 of an inch. The “roots” are actually the body of the organism. What we see gathered on the surface that we think of as mold, is only the spore or seeds gathered together by the millions or billions. Ten thousand spores will fit on the head of a pin, and in just one square inch there may be over a million. This presents a serious challenge for any clean up, since when the mold is disturbed the spores go air-born. That’s why most homeowner and even some contractor attempts to clean up the mold actually worsen the situation by “planting” the newly air-born spore all over everything. In other words they actually plant new mold problems, while attempting to clean up the existing one! How horrifying!



BASEMENT MOLD USUALLY MEANS HEALTH PROBLEMS


The reason that mold in the basement causes health issues, more than in almost any other area of the home is that most homes have forced air heat, and the furnace is in the basement. This means that the furnace draws in air from the basement and if there is a mold problem it spreads the moldy air and spores ALL OVER THE HOUSE!

In fact many times I get called in after the homeowners have spent thousands of dollars to “waterprooftheir basements, and THOUSANDS MORE to turn it into finished space. All that money and hard work, only to find mold growing on newly installed drywall. This happened to one of my customers named Bonnie Rembowski. She had hired a big local company and they installed an inside system. She then hired a contractor to remodel her basement. They hung new dry wall and framed new walls. She had new carpeting installed and everything seemed perfect until ….


Bonnie kept getting sick.


She was treated for recurring bronchitis many times over a period of about six months. Finally one day Bonnie’s doctor suggested to her that she have her house checked for mold. Bonnie called me. I began inspecting the basement and I immediately began to notice mold growing along the bottom several feet on all the newly dry-walled walls that had just been “waterproofed”. I began inspecting the inside system and I discovered that even though a permit was pulled … Even though the drainage pipes were inspected and installed properly… even though there was no puddling or physical seepage, the system was NOT WORKING . The reason why became apparent after we broke open the floor and inspected the weep holes- JUST AS I SUSPECTED. The walls were not draining do to improper weep hole placement. Poor Bonnie,


WE HAD TO COMPLETELY GUT THE BRAND NEW BASEMENT …


and disinfect everything to stop the mold and help her STOP GETTING SICK. She contacted the waterproofing company who did the job WRONG. They told her there was nothing they could do under the warranty since technically the basement hadn’t leaked (it was just DONE WRONG in the first place). Poor Bonnie then had to hire us to fix the basement problem TOO! Unfortunately this is not the first time this has happened to me and sadly I’m afraid it WON’T be the last.


HOW DO I TREAT THE MOLD?


Unfortunately there are as many “treatments” for mold as there are remediators out in the real world offering “mold remediation”. Basement mold problems are especially challenging for a homeowner to solve as the mold industry has no National Guides so the list of options is confusing and often indecipherable with the average “mold guy” promising the latest craze. Mold spores can grow at alarming rates. One mold spore can develop into 12 million in twelve hours!

Also the mold is feeding on the boards, and what you can see with the naked eye are millions and millions of them clumped together. What you can’t see are the “roots” The organism itself. The roots of mold grow into the substrate at least 3/16 of an inch. What we think of as the mold the clumped spores are actually the fruit or reproductive body like an apple to an apple tree. You cannot hope to solve a mold problem leaving these roots and treating only the surface of the wood. Also, the majority of the chemicals being used on the market today, contain known cancer-causing chemicals and, worse, do not work on porous surfaces (every surface in a basement).


Generally there are three basic steps to a mold abatement:


  1. Assessment: this means performing a minimum of a visual inspection and or a series of tests to determine the scope of the infested or problem areas. Testing can be designed to determine the air-born levels of mold as well as Determining whether or not mold exists and is growing behind the walls with a wall cavity sample. Testing can also determine whether or not there are health risks ascribed to a particular type of mold. The assessment also involves a written project guide called a protocol plan which has been designed by the Mold Inspector specific to your individual project.


  1. Abatement: this is the actual establishment of controls to prevent contaminating the rest of the structure during the clean up as well as the actual clean up itself.


  1. Verification: Also known as clearance testing designed to authenticate the work and to verify that the mold clean up was successful. A series of air test are performed to ensure that the mold levels have been brought to within the same levels or lower levels than the out door control samples.


THE BASIC SYSTEMS:


The mold certifying authorities recommend putting the basement under negative pressure. This means using expensive equipment to suck more air into the attic than escapes from it. The next recommendation is to remove the contaminated porous materials into plastic bags which are taped shut. Then to HEPA vacuum the joist boards and ceiling. Next, manually wash all of the same areas with a detergent solution. Finally to correct the water source (USUALLY,

Waterproof the basement).


The Problem: This is an extremely man hour intensive process that costs a ton of money. It also does nothing to address the spores (mold seeds) or to address the roots (the organism itself).


The other contractors in the area use a variety of techniques that can be broken into three main groups: the fog and Encapsulators (spray and spray painters), the bleach and ozonators, and the franchise users.


First group the fog and encapsulators: by far the most common these contractors will tell you that all that is necessary is to go into the basement and fog a “magic” chemical and then to encapsulate the mold using a poisoned mold inhibiting paint. Many of these charlatans will not even admit that their encapsulant is paint. Usually the paint has a heavy metal added to it like copper or tin or zinc. Sometimes they have a toxic chemical added to them to discourage mold growth.


The problem: These contractors almost exclusively use fungicides that are not sporicidal. This means that they do not kill spores and most of them will not penetrate a porous substrate (like wood). This means that when they apply the encapsulant they are applying it directly over the moldy roots. This is a huge no –no as the vapor barrier forming nature of latex paints can cause dew-point to be achieved between the paint and the wood itself. Have you ever seen what happens when you lay a piece of plastic sheeting or drop-cloth on the ground overnight in the summertime? Did you ever notice those beads of water or dew? That’s because the Earth’s temperature in the summertime is cooler than the outdoor air. That’s precisely what happens when you treat a moldy basement with any kind of paint! The paint begins to delaminate, and I have seen mold growing directly on Mold-proof paint! We have had to re-treat many of these hack mold jobs in the last year alone!


The bleach and ozonators: these contractors will go into the basement and spray bleach onto the wood. The reason is to remove the stains; many of these companies will not admit they are using bleach! Just ask them what the active ingredient is in their “stain remover”, if it’s sodium hypochlorite, it’s bleach.

These contractors usually refuse to warranty their work, and they will claim that the Ozone cannons they use will turn the spores into ash.

The problem: Bleach has an ion structure that prevents it from penetrating into a porous substrate like wood; this means, it leaves the roots un-harmed. It also releases a powerful environmental toxin called, Dioxin. While the ozone cannons will destroy the chemicals off gassed by the bleach, this technique leaves the complete root structure intact and guarantees that if you ever have a new water leak the mold will go right into full production, and the mold problem will immediately return.


The Franchisors: These contractors have bought into a “system” most often using toxic chemicals which can harm you and your family.



The problem: Often their warranties aren’t worth the paper they are printed on as they only agree to replace the chemicals if they fail. Usually the fine print in the warranty makes it worthless. Often these are money seekers who use low dollar labor as the owners bought into the franchise so they didn’t have to work on the job (just like subway shops)






I discovered to my surprise about 6 years ago that the chemicals that were being used by my so-called competitors (and indeed by most of the industry) not only DIDN’T WORK on porous surfaces… which is about EVERY surface that mold would grow on in a house. I also figured out that most of these chemicals contain NO ingredients that KILL the spores (the most important but hardest things to kill) and also …that they leave behind RESIDUAL TOXIC CHEMICAL POISONS that in some case are WORSE than the poisons the MOLD makes!


Yikes! I found this out the hard way because in the beginning, believe it or not, I used the same old chemicals that everyone else in the industry STILL USES!


And you know how I found out? I had three “special Ladies” that got sick from the chemicals I used in their homes. I call these ladies “special” because due to living with extremely TOXIC mold, they developed a RARE condition called Multiple Chemical Sensitivity Disorder. Ever heard of it? I hadn’t. I can honestly say that I thought they were trying to get money back for a job WELL DONE. But…


Since I had three of them in a row, I decided to try and see if there might be anything to their claim of sickness. I discovered that their noses worked actually much BETTER than a “regular” persons nose (someone without multiple Chemical Sensitivity Disorder).


HMMM! I began to theorize that maybe I was POISONING ALL OF MY CUSTOMERS, but our “regular noses” just couldn’t smell it.


I quickly began to research. Just what was in those chemicals? After all, they were EPA approved and biodegradable. What I discovered truly SHOCKED THEN HORRIFIED ME


The EPA routinely approves products that contain known carcinogens (those are CANCER CAUSING chemicals) … I was AGHAST!


I quickly realized that I need to do some research and change the chemicals that I used –FAST! So I got together with some of the countries top scientists. I met many, very, very smart people who had already devoted their ENTIRE LIVES to the cause. I read TONS of material about mold and the different ways to KILL MOLD. I took ALL of the good ideas that I learned from all these sources and EXPERTS and...


Then I FUSED them all together into a system that is absolutely LETHAL to mold but remains SAFE for your entire family! In fact it leaves behind NO known residual poisons that can make people sick. It cost me a FORTUNE to do.



FINE DETAILED CLEANING, IS OFTEN OVERLOOKED BY MOST MOLD-CLEANING PROFESSIONALS.


Our System: The first thing we do is isolate the basement from the rest of the house. Next we SATURATE all of the moldy trusses and sheathing with a disinfectant the uses the amazing power of Hydrogen Peroxide nature’s miracle disinfectant. The reason we start with this is when mold is senses it is being attacked it releases its spore into the air, a phenomenon called bursting or sporulation. Hydrogen Peroxide is unique among the mold killing chemicals as it is the only liquid I know that will completely destroy a spore (mold seed).

This way we kill the spores before they can spread all over. Next we apply the stain removing solution. This is absolutely a must, because while truly only cosmetic in nature, failure to apply the stain remover will result in untrained eyes (home inspectors) believing that the mold is still active. Next and most important to the warranty and long term efficacy of the process we actually impregnate the wood with an environmentally friendly solution of borate called ENVIROTECH WP. This is made from extremely finely ground and specially designed for dissolving borax a cousin to the old fashioned 20 mule team we use in our laundry. This product is absolutely amazing. It was designed to penetrate the substrate a full inch (remember mold roots only grow 3/16’s of an inch into the wood). It not only prevents all hosts of decay and dry rot fungi but it also prevents wood boring insects carpenter ants and termites. Imagine you get a complete two for one bonus mold proofing and bug proofing in one fell swoop! Then we even dry fog the powdered ENVIROTECH WP all over the insulation. Lastly…


I discovered that the scientists at Los Alamos national laboratory have extensively studied how to decontaminate a civil facility like a house that has been contaminated by a spore based pathogen like toxic mold.


The scientists concluded that if you only follow the guidelines recommended for mold that you will leave the structure contaminated with spore. They conclude that in order to fully decontaminate the structure/ area it is absolutely necessary to fill it full of toxic levels of a reactive gas like ozone. While other mold guys are still using poisonous ozone gas we use a specialty gas called ARAN. Which is a gas made of isotopes of pure oxygen that go all the way up to O14 which is far more reactive and far less poisonous to people. This gas penetrate the nooks and crannies and crevices in the attic where the liquid based chemicals/products can’t penetrate guaranteeing the destruction of any spores we remediators might have missed because we can’t see them (ten thousand spore can fit on the head of a pin).


Finally we fog out our staging areas and any other areas of the property we’ve utilized guaranteeing we completely eliminate all threats to occupants.


So to recap:


  1. We Kill the mold with a special Hydrogen Peroxide based disinfectant.

  2. We eliminate the stains.

  3. We impregnate the wood and insulation with a non-toxic borate solution that prevents: mold, wood borers, carpenter ants, and termites.

  4. We gas out the rest of the basement to eliminate the spore we missed.


Our process is far more effective, and contains more steps than any other company in Cleveland. We are so sure of the process, we offer the very best warrantees in the industry to protect both your home and your wallet.


HERE’s what some of our friends have had to say!

  

We are a large Fanny Mae / R.E.O. brokerage. When we have a mold house we call Mold Solutions. Over the years they have immediately responded every time we have asked and if the work is ordered, they can complete even extremely large projects quickly and safely. We trust them so much Matt had them waterproof his OWN basement. --Matt and Kelli Beckett Realty Executive Decisions, Columbus, Ohio


Every time I have a mold problem or a wet basement I call Mold Solutions. Their immediate response and Best Price Guarantee has helped me many times over. They have even called potential buyers for me long after the clean up and explained their process to ease fears and help me complete the sale.

Donald Fatobene, Principi Realty, Warren, Ohio



How Many Times Have You Heard Of Mold Re-occurring After Expensive Treatment? Basements STILL leaking following invasive excavations and COSTLY water-proofing projects? Learn How To Protect Yourself from Liability With The Best Guarantees In The Industry.


We offer 2 extremely powerful guarantees:



Guarantee#1:



IRON CLAD 7 YEAR “No Hidden Clause” SERVICE WARRANTY: We warrant that NO MOLD will grow on any areas treated with Borate inhibitor for SEVEN FULL YEARS. Warranty is subject to the correction of the existing water problem We’re so confident in our process that if mold grows back on borate treated areas we’ll will buy you a $1000 dollar US Saving Bond and retreat area at NO CHARGE.  Warranty is FULLY TRANSFERABLE. Void if additional UN-RELATED water damage occurs.




Guarantee#2:

. BEST PRICE GUARANTEE:

No competitor possesses our techniques or our commitment to customer satisfaction and quality. If price is the ONLY important factor to you, we guarantee to BEAT any other contractor’s price by 15% if it is itemized and will be duplicated exactly. Contractor reserves the right to refrain if recommendations and scope of work are inadequate to solve problem.


Sincerely,



Charles Boday

All Rights Reserved

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