Roof vents, pvc boots, flu or furnace stack, chimney counter flashing or even your skylight gaskets will suffer the same effects as the rest of the caulking around your home, especially in cold weather climates or areas where temperature fluctuations are common. It will separate and deteriorate each year and it is imperative these areas are not overlooked to ensure your homes health is intact. Just as with your own health, your homes health changes over time. If these steps are ignored, moisture will undeniably work its way behind plywood decking, wood trim or siding which will expose you to much more serious problems such as algae growth or even worse, a highly toxic mold infestation.
The dangers associated with algae and mold growth are all too often overlooked. With the right conditions, nearly 100% of the homes in the Chicago-land area will experience algae growth on the roof and/or siding. Of the Chicago-land population, 28% are homeowners, which means, 1/3 of the all the homeowners in this five county area are at risk of contracting serious health hazards.
Most people can see the black streaking on your homes roof from the ground. It can be unsightly and really makes the roof look old and warn out. However, that is not damage or even wear and tear; it is Algae growth and something that should not be taken lightly.
We commissioned a study and have sifted through more than $3M worth of data and research on this subject. What we discovered was shocking. This seemingly harmless this can actually become a serious health hazard for you and your family. We have a moral responsibility and obligation to educate not only our clients, but all homeowners who may run the risk of exposure.
Our research suggests that, although algae itself is not harmful; it may become a food source for mold. As we mentioned in part I of this series, the latest discovery of “Mold Fine Particulates”, which are airborne in our environment, can be transferred to areas with algae, where they feed and multiply, potentially becoming a major health hazard. Once these mold spores have imbedded themselves into a major food source, there is no stopping the growth potential. If surrounding areas on your roof, vents, pvc boots, flu stacks, chimney flashing or even skylights are compromised, there is more area for these mold colonies to infest your home.
If ingested, they will start to produce “Mycotoxins” within your body. You may develop sneezing, watery eyes, itching, skin irritation or headaches during Level 1 symptoms. It becomes worse at Level 2 with nose bleeds, breathing disorders nausea, hair loss, memory loss, ear infections just to name a few. If you are unfortunate enough to suffer from Level 3 symptoms, watch out! Blindness, brain damage, bleeding lungs, cancer or even death.
Don’t become a victim. As we have covered in this 5 part series, trying to handle these items can be time consuming and costly. Combined, these maintenance items can total more than $1,300 - $3,500 each year. Not to mention, potentially thousands of dollars with untimely and costly repairs, should something break down. A simple low cost preventative maintenance program is the answer to all your worries. If you are a weekend warrior and can handle each of these recommended steps, take action now. However, if you don’t want to, don’t have the time or physically can’t, visit www.safegc.com and sign up for your own Gold or Platinum Preventative Home Maintenance Program for less than the cost for one cup of coffee per day.