I was contacted a few weeks ago and asked if I had any interest in testing and writing about a mold remediator called Concrobium. Concrobium is described as “…an all natural solution that kills mold and keeps it from coming back – without bleach, ammonia or VOCs.”
I don’t think I bothered to read the rest before I hit the reply button and responded with a resounding YES PLEASE! We have a mold issue in our two year old house. Under the stairs in our basement is a storage space where the sump pump is located. When it rains, the water from the driveway drains into a grate at the bottom of our garage and then it flows down a pipe to the sump pump which shoots it out the side of the house into another pipe which is too short to reach the street so it travels back down the driveway and the whole cycle starts again. During long stretches of rainy periods that little room can smell worse than my boys’ hockey bags after a weekend tournament!
Mold loves damp dark places with little air circulation, a porous surface on which to grow such as drywall or wood, and an ideal temperature of between 18 and 28 degrees Celsius. Our small room under the stairs provides an excellent environment for it to breed. In the fall, when I went into the room to pull out the winter jackets, in addition to the knock-me-off-my-feet smell, I noticed little white spotty powder on the coats. While I don’t know a lot about mold, I do know that musty smell and spotty appearance of it. So, you can see why I was so anxious to try out this product.
Concrobium has been approved by Health Canada as a safe, non-toxic substance with no emissions of volatile organic compounds. It has also been registered with Environmental Protection Agency in the United States. Unlike bleach which only kills mold on the surface, Concrobium is comprised of “food grade inorganic salts and purified water” is sprayed over the mold and actually crushes the organism including its roots as it dries. Concrobium is safe to use on any surface that can withstand water including fabric (it isn’t recommended for leather, ultra-suede or suede).
I spoke with Eric Green and Brad Elder who are the President and Vice President of Siamons International respectively, about Concrobium. Siamons Internationals is the company responsible for Concrobium and is based in Toronto. Brad and Eric offered to lend me a fogger to try out the product. Foggers are used to disperse the product into larger or hard to reach areas such as crawl spaces. It was easy to use and the whole process took less than 15 minutes (okay, minus the hauling out of all our stuff that’s stored in that little area — it ended up being a good time to do a little clutter removal). Their website provides instructions on how to use the fogger and foggers are available to rent at Home Depot.
It’s important to remember that treating the mold won’t get rid of the humid conditions unless the source of the water causing it is also addressed. In our case we still need to do something about the storm water issue. In the meantime, Concrobium is said to be an effective shield against future build-up of mold as it provides an antibacterial surface preventing mold from forming.
Perhaps the biggest evidence that Concrobium is working in our house is the now absent moldy smell in the storage room under the stairs. Hooray!
For more information on Concrobium please visit their website. Concrobium can be found at Home Depot stores across Canada and the United States.