I’m glad that we’re getting rain here in California this year. Really, I am. I know that we needed it badly. I’m just not so convinced that we needed it in our living room and kitchen. Not so much. Especially since we just had beautiful new wood floors installed in September.
And I can now confirm that yes, living with mold can cause infections of the lungs and sinuses. And probably lots of other problems too.
We didn’t know that mold was growing in our walls, under the floor and in our kitchen cabinets. Not until we could see it. And by the time you can see mold, it’s probably been there for quite some time.
Brandon and I both came down with colds. Or so we thought. We even went to the doctor and were prescribed antibiotics before we realized what was going on. Because it was still cold and flu season and it was rainy and icky outside. So, we took extra vitamin C and made tea to drink while we huddled under blankets and watched tv.
It happened out of nowhere when I got up to put a cup in the sink. I walked behind the couch to go into the kitchen and I noticed that one section of the floor looked a little strange. At first I thought it had been burnt by something because it looked black. But when I looked closer, I saw that it was bubbled and there were other boards that looked damaged too. Pushing down on the boards, we saw water come up between the cracks and since it was raining very heavily that particular night, we thought there was a leak somewhere. Boy, was there.
Seeing that it was water damage, we started looking for the source of the leak. We followed the discolored and buckled floor boards up the wall to the ceiling but couldn’t figure out where it was coming in. The kitchen cabinets backed to the living room on one side next to the damaged floor area so that was the next place we looked. Yep, the cabinet was completely soaked through and inside, under the brand new shelf paper, was completely covered in black, fuzzy mold.
The first thing we did was take everything out of the cabinet and into the garage for the time being. At this point, we were a little grossed out but didn’t really think it was a huge deal. And it probably wouldn’t have been if that was the extent of the problem.
Since my dad is a contractor, we called him the next morning to come out and see what we were dealing with and how to fix it. It turned out that there was more damage than we thought and more than just that one cabinet and section of floor had been ruined.
We knew there was mold but weren’t sure exactly where it was coming from or how much there was so my dad called in a mold specialist who used a special light to find out just what was going on. The light showed mold in the ceiling and a large portion of the wall in the living room and behind the kitchen cabinet and stove.
You might remember my renovation pictures from last September showing what the kitchen currently looked like. We had plans to remodel the kitchen this summer…
The floor boards were pulled up and half the kitchen cabinets torn out and yes, there was even more mold. It was under the linoleum floor in the kitchen and inside the walls and ceiling. Water had been pouring in from the roof and also up through the floor from the neighbor’s gutter. For more than just a couple of days or even weeks. All of this is even more frustrating because we have to deal with a homeowner’s association who we had alerted to this problem when we bought the place in September.
So, here is what it looks like now.
And we also have this lovely tent inside to quarantine the area.
Luckily, we will be getting our new kitchen, just not using the exact process we would’ve preferred.
I’ll keep you updated with our progress!