Mold from poor ventilation, leaks or flooding can affect many parts of the home, including walls, foundations, floors, ceilings and HVAC systems. Homeowners should choose professional service for safe and effective mold remediation. ConsumerAffairs researched the best mold removal in San Diego to protect your health and assist in finding relief for your mold problem.
Mold removal and remediation companies in San Diego
While San Diego’s climate is relatively dry, mold is common in older apartment buildings and homes with poor ventilation. Moisture from showers builds up and causes mold to grow. Leaking pipes, especially slow leaks that go undetected for long periods, cause mold to grow inside walls. Flooding causes water damage, and mildew and mold can set in if the area is not thoroughly dried out after removing the water.
If mold is not removed correctly, it can aggravate allergies and cause additional problems for San Diego residents with asthma. High levels of mold spores in the air also cause eye, nose and throat irritation as well as sinus congestion. Prolonged exposure to mold that produces spores called mycotoxins, also known as toxic mold or black mold, can cause neurological problems and, in rare cases, death.
Signs of a mold problem in San Diego
Signs of a mold problem in a home include visible growth, a musty smell, water stains, discolored surfaces, peeling paint, rotting wood and condensation on windows or walls. Mold can easily be differentiated from mildew, which is typically white or gray and powdery in appearance. Mold can be green, black or yellow and appears to have a fuzzy or slimy texture.
Common places for mold to grow in San Diego
Bathroom walls, showers and bathtubs
Wall behind washer and dryer or other appliances
Carpet and carpet padding
HVAC systems (including fans and ducts)
Foundation and subfloor
Common mold remediation in San Diego includes removal from the home’s foundation, roof, drywall, HVAC system, gutters, furniture and concrete floors. If mold is not immediately visible, mold testing can determine if mold is present in unhealthy amounts.
The cost of mold removal in San Diego
The average cost of mold removal in San Diego is $2,200, but prices vary widely depending on the size and location of the affected area, amount of growth and type of mold. Some companies might have a flat rate for mold inspection. Black mold removal requires certain precautions that might increase the price companies charge.
If mold is growing in a home’s HVAC system, a mold removal company may need to use specialized techniques that increase the expense. Mold damage to walls or floors may require the company to replace parts of the structure or carpet, costs that are not included in mold remediation estimates.
Mold remediation companies in San Diego typically charge by square foot of affected area. Prices should include:
Mold containment and removal
For mold caused by flooding or water damage, the company must ensure the area is completely dry to prevent further growth. If poor ventilation or excess moisture caused the mold problem, the removal company might recommend getting a dehumidifier or sealing the home’s foundation as preventative measures — services that increase the initial cost but save money on future treatments.
Your homeowners insurance policy may cover mold remediation up to a pre-set amount for incidents where a covered peril caused the mold — for example, if mold is caused by a pipe that bursts and floods your basement. Mold removal is not covered when it occurs from a preventable source, like failure to ventilate an area or repair a slow leak.
Flood damage is generally not covered by homeowners insurance, so any mold caused by flooding is also not covered. If you have separate flood coverage, mold remediation is typically covered up to a specific limit. Optional additional coverage is usually available.
Choosing a mold removal company in San Diego
A reputable mold removal service should have experience with all types of mold and be able to explain the remediation process that applies to your case. The California Department of Public Health provides basic information for homeowners and tenants who think they might have a mold problem.
Because of the potential health risks involved with mold removal, make certain any company you hire is experienced and knowledgeable about the mold removal process. When contacting companies, consider asking questions such as:
How much experience does your company have with mold removal?
How is the mold contained for removal?
Do you provide services to prevent future mold growth?
Are there extra charges for different types of mold or HVAC mold removal?
What certifications do your employees have?
Do you charge a flat rate or by square foot?
Does the service include replacing mold-damaged structural components?
Do you guarantee your company’s work?
Several trade organizations set standards and provide certification for quality mold remediation, including the National Organization of Remediators and Mold Inspectors, the National Association of Mold Professionals, the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification and the Restoration Industry Association. To guarantee you’re working with a reputable company, ensure they’re certified by a professional organization.
California law does not regulate mold remediation in San Diego, but the law does state that mold is one of the conditions that make a home “substandard.” If the property owner or landlord fails to remedy a mold problem in a rented house or apartment, it is unlawful for tenants to inhabit the affected units.
ServiceMaster is a national company with more than 60 years of experience. The company offers 24/7 service in San Diego County and provides guidance in disaster situations. ServiceMaster Restore’s technicians receive comprehensive training at the company’s specialized facility. San Diego customers appreciate the kind, caring agents who helped coordinate work and insurance claims.
Certified Restoration has more than 25 years of experience serving San Diego. The company focuses on environmentally friendly practices and provides 24/7 service. All of the company’s work is guaranteed, and San Diego reviewers recommend the company for its efficient and professional mold removal that includes personal service from the owner.
TSC Restoration is a local San Diego company. The team is available 24/7 and covers the whole remediation process, starting at inspection and ending with any replacement/reconstruction. Reviews from San Diego report fair pricing, rapid response times and communicative technicians who accommodate customers with flexible scheduling.
Precision Mold Removal
Precision Mold Removal specializes in mold remediation and provides 24/7 service. The company offers no-obligation inspections to determine if you need professional help. San Diego customers appreciate the company’s thorough inspections, professional work and recommendations for preventing future mold growth.