Mold Removal and Remediation on a Boat
When compared to a residential or commercial setting, maintaining a safe and mold-free environment in watercraft is extremely important and signficantly more difficult. Boats, yachts, and other vehicles are much more susceptible to toxins such as Stachybotrys chartarum (or "black mold") and other types of water-related fungi, due to their naturally high exposure to moisture. If left untreated, mold will not only devalue the vehicle but create an unsafe environment aboard the craft for both crew and passengers. Only meticulous and frequent maintenance will keep these toxins at bay long-term.
According to the GREENGUARD Environmental Institute, Florida is ranked as #2 on a top-ten list of states with the worst hazardous mold risks in America. Unsurprisingly, a 2016 Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission statistic reveals that there are also roughly 931,450 registered water vessels in Florida, alone. Statistics such as these should prompt more concern in the nautical community as mold and mildew are both severe health risks, with hazardous mold accounting for, and contributing to, many illnesses.
Symptoms of Mold in Watercraft
Both recreational and commercial watercraft are at risk for significantly higher levels of mold, the most common of which is black mold. Though relatively uncommon indoors, this toxin is pervasive where water collects and is nourished by cellulose-rich materials, like wood. Boats with decks and framework made of wood are more likely to harbor dangerous black mold, especially when improperly maintained. Even vessels with fiberglass fixtures are at risk, however, since this mold is pervasive where light is unavailable. Black mold can appear both dark green and black in color and looks wet or "slimy". When the spores of this mold dry, they detach from the surface they are growing on and contaminate the air, making their way into air ducts and into dark, damp areas to populate.
Black mold affects passengers with symptoms that are often ignored or attributed to another common illness, depending on the severity of the mold infestation. Preexisting health conditions, such as sensitive allergies and COPD, are often exacerbated by the appearance of black mold, creating more underlying health risks. Though a large amount of mold is able to be smelled or seen, a smaller crop of mold can offset symptoms to indicate its presence. Those symptoms include, but aren't limited to:
- Sore Throat
- Allergy Symptoms
- Frequent Cold or Flu-Like Symptoms
- Wheezing / Difficulty Breathing
Because of this mold's volatility, long-term health issues from overexposure are likely. In addition to bronchitis and recurring respiratory inflammation, damage to the nervous system and vital organs can occur over time. Older watercraft are at a higher risk for hidden stores of black mold, due to the materials they are crafted from and possible lack of sanitation by previous ownership, therefore requiring more attention than their newer counterparts.
Another frequent marine mold is mildew. Mildew requires everything that a water vessel in storage can provide: stale air, moisture, lack of light, and something to feed on (organic materials, like plant fibers and paper). Because mildew forms just before warm weather, it is imperative to pay close attention to the temperature of the storage unit, as well as the items contained within the vessel. Wet or damp gear, ropes, life jackets, and paper are all areas that harbor large amounts of mildew if left ignored. Proper ventilation and internal temperature control are both good ways to aid in mitigating the spread of mildew; however, having all watercraft professionally cleaned is the only way to ensure total control.
Regularly treating all marine vessels (both commercial and recreational) for mold and mildew is fundamental to creating a safe environment for those aboard. A boat can appear, at first glance, to be clean and well-maintained; however, mold and fungi will pervade in the dark, damp areas that are often ignored during a regular cleaning. In storage cupboards, beneath upholstery, in the bilge, and under the seats are all areas that remain virtually untouched by regular sanitation, and harbor the perfect environment for producing dangerous spores. Most of these areas are hidden away and require professional assistance to suitably clean.
Resolving Mold and Health Risks Aboard Your Watercraft
Creating a safe environment aboard a marine vessel is both labor-intensive and necessary. Though mold and mildew may seem impossible to avoid, ATP Mold is ready to help. Our knowledgeable, professional, and attentive staff members are poised and ready to begin working through any problem caused by mold and water damage, from beginning to end. Our EPA-certified, non-toxic, organic removal and remediation techniques will guarantee you a safer environment for a fair and affordable price, and we are licensed, insured, and dedicated to safety.
Here at ATP Environmental Solutions, we are committed to providing our customers with both solutions and explanations, charging them with the know-how to keep themselves and their clients or families safe, without question. We believe that our clients deserve to know the details about our treatment plans and course of action from the very first consultation. Upon placing your initial call to ATP Mold, our passionate and friendly customer service team will first arrange for an on-site, obligation-free quote to get the ball rolling, followed by a comprehensive meeting to determine any and all options that are available to you. Because the health of our customers is our first and top priority, your confidence in our know-how is important-- our team of professionals will safeguard your comfort and peace of mind before even considering a treatment.
Once you are ready to begin, our capable professionals will work quickly, safely, and responsibly to certify that you and your loved ones' safety is put at the forefront of our operation. ATP Mold does not engage in subcontracting, meaning our team of professionals is a family of its own, and our company is owner operated to ensure fair and equitable business practices. Our organic and non-toxic methods are our commitment to protecting the environment while keeping any location safe for inhabitance.
If you suspect you have mold on your vessel, call ATP at (561) 337-0805 to schedule an onsite analysis. Our highly trained staff has the tools and experience to remediate your boat back to its original condidtion.