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Indoor Air Quality Tips: Microbial Volatile Organic Compounds

Monday, May 7th, 2012 at 11:56 am

Microbial volatile organic compounds are chemical agents produced by organic materials like mold that can have a potentially dangerous effect on your nervous system, and negatively affect your indoor air quality in Gilbert. In fact, some MVOCs have an equal or even worse effect on the human body as petroleum based VOCs which have long been labeled as dangerous to inhale by the EPA.

The problem of course is that there are too many talking heads out there telling you that MVOCs will kill you or that they can be ignored. The truth is in between, and for your family to remain safe and healthy you need to keep a close eye on the effects of potential black mold patches in your home.

Toxicity in Many Molds

The most commonly cited “toxic” mold is black mold or stachybotrys. This mold produces a mycotoxin that can quite literally poison anyone who breathes or ingests it. However, other forms of mold which might appear as red, white, green or grey produce MVOCs that are equally dangerous. Many people with mold have these dangerous chemicals in their home and don’t even realize it.

Typically, MVOCs can be smelled as a musty, organic gas that develops from the mold as it matures. Mold produces a variety of chemicals including benzene, aldehyde, tulolene, more. These chemicals create that musty scent and are all quite dangerous to the human body. Just because a chemical is organic doesn’t mean it isn’t dangerous to your health. Imagine if man made formaldehyde or benzene were in the air near your children – what would you do?

Handling MVOCs

The first step to reducing MVOCs in your home is mold abatement. Proper removal and air purification will reduce the volume of mold that can off gas these chemicals. Additionally, you should reduce your use of such chemicals as aerosol sprays, paints and paint thinners, hobby supplies, air fresheners and other chemicals compounds that produce manmade or petroleum based chemicals that feed mold.

Finally, make sure you have your home inspected as soon as you suspect the presence of mold. Regardless of the mold’s color and the smell you notice, it should be checked by a professional in the mold detection and abatement field. It might be nothing, but if it is something, you want someone you can trust to take care of it immediately.  Call Cool Touch to set up an inspection today.

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