How Dry Ice / CO2 Works in Mold Cleanup
How it Works
Cold Jet dry ice blasting uses compressed air to accelerate frozen carbon dioxide (CO2) “dry ice” pellets to a high velocity. A compressed air supply of 80 PSI/50 scfm can be used in this process. Dry ice pellets can be made on-site or supplied. Pellets are made from food grade carbon dioxide that has been specifically approved by the FDA, the EPA and the USDA. Dry ice blasting is similar in principle to sand blasting. Instead of sand, dry ice blasting uses high-density dry ice pellets, which are propelled onto a surface using compressed air.
Unlike sand blasting, dry ice blasting is non-abrasive. When dry ice pellets hit a surface the dry ice pellets immediately sublimate [change in form from solid to gas].
The rapid expansion of the solid dry ice into gas causes a tiny “explosion” which loosens the contaminant. The extremely cold temperature [-109 degrees Fahrenheit] of the dry ice causes the bond of the contaminant to the surface to weaken.
Dry ice blast cleaning leaves no residue like sand blasting, and it leaves no toxic waste as solvents can. It lets you skip clean-up problems associated with other cleaning methods with mold cleanup.
Three Ways Dry Ice Blasting helps in Mold Cleanup
Kinetic Energy is transferred by the accelerated dry ice pellet as it hits the surface during the dry ice blasting process. The dry ice pellet sublimates (changes from solid to gas) upon impact and is softer compared to other cleaning media such as sand, grit, or beads. Dry ice blasting is nonabrasive and will not damage most substrate materials or affect tool tolerances.
Thermal-Shock Effect occurs when cold dry ice pellets (109 degrees Fahrenheit below zero) strike a much warmer, contaminated surface during dry ice blasting. The extremely cold temperature of the dry ice causes the bond to weaken between the surface being cleaned and dirt, grime, and other residues. This effect aids in the release of the contaminant when it is struck by the dry ice pellets during dry ice blasting.
Thermal-Kinetic Effect combines the impact of sublimation and the rapid heat transfer discussed above. During dry ice blasting, when the dry ice pellet hits the contaminated surface, the vapor expands so much (up to 800 times the volume of the pellet) and so fast that a micro-explosion occurs, taking off dirt and grime in the dry ice blasting process.
The Dangers of Mold
If you suspect that the heating/ventilation/air conditioning (HVAC) system may be contaminated with mold (it is part of an identified moisture problem, for instance, or there is mold near the intake to the system), consult EPA’s guide Should You Have the Air Ducts in Your Home Cleaned before taking further action. Do not run the HVAC system if you know or suspect that it is contaminated with mold – it could spread mold throughout the building.
If the water and/or mold damage was caused by sewage or other contaminated water, then call in a professional who has experience cleaning and fixing buildings damaged by contaminated water.
If you already have a mold problem – ACT QUICKLY. Mold damages what it grows on. The longer it grows, the more damage it can cause.
Ten Advantages of Dry Ice Blast in Mold Cleanup
Mold cleanup with Dry ice blasting uses non-toxic, non-hazardous, high-density dry ice pellets in a high-velocity airflow to blast away unwanted surface materials. On impact, the pellets instantly sublimate without generating any secondary waste, so dry ice blasting is a cleaner way to clean. Dry ice blasting also meets EPA, USDA, and FDA guidelines. Dry ice blasting has many unique and superior benefits over traditional blasting media.
1. Less Clean-Up Waste
Frequently the “clean-up” from your current cleaning method is worse than the problem itself. Dry ice blasting solves that problem by eliminating your secondary waste. Dry ice pellets do the job, then simply disappear, eliminating the high disposal costs associated with other materials. Carbon dioxide is a non-poisonous, liquefied gas, which is both inexpensive and easily stored at work sites.
2. Extend Equipment Life
Dry ice pellets used in dry ice blasting reduce the equipment and component wear that normally occurs with the use of conventional blast media such as sand, glass beads and walnut shells.
3. Clean In Place
Save time, cost, and labor by cleaning equipment in place. With dry ice blasting, disassembly can be largely eliminated. This reduces the chances of damaging equipment during disassembly, reduces injury and fatigue of workers, and saves valuable hours or days by reducing downtime.
4. Clean More Thoroughly with Dry Ice Blasting
Dry ice blast cleaning can reach places that other methods cannot, such as nooks and crannies that are difficult to reach with brushes or chemicals. Dry Ice can be used to remove production residues, release agents, contaminants, paints, oils and biofilms. There are also multiple levels of strength that can be used – it can be as gentle as dusting smoke damage from books or as aggressive as removing weld slag from tooling. It can be used for many general cleaning applications as well.
5. Reduce or Eliminate Damage to Equipment
Dry ice blasting won’t pit or abrade surfaces like other blasting techniques such as sand, glass beads or walnut shells. Dry ice blast cleaning is non-abrasive because as the dry ice pellets strike the surface to be cleaned, they immediately become soft and sublimate [evaporate], after loosening the contaminant from the part to be cleaned.
6. Save Space – No Need for a Dedicated Cleaning Area
Dry ice blasting units are portable, so they go to where the equipment to be cleaned is located, instead of bringing the equipment to the cleaning area.
7. A Safe Cleaning Environment
Dry ice is non-toxic, unlike many solvents used in the cleaning industry. The non-toxic dry ice blasting system will significantly decrease employee exposure to hazardous chemical agents and other dangerous cleaning methods. Health risks are reduced, and operator safety is enhanced, creating a safer working environment overall. Dry Ice has also been approved for use in the food industry. Dry ice blasting does not release harmful gases into the atmosphere. Dry ice blasting reduces or eliminates employee exposure to (and corporate liability from) the use of dangerous chemical cleaning agents
8. Dry Cleaning
Dry ice blasting cleans thoroughly and leaves your equipment dry. It works without chemical solvents, without lubricants and without water, so it’s the perfect cleaning solution for electrical equipment or other water-sensitive applications.
9. Non-Polluting and Environmentally Friendly
As a cleaning agent, dry ice simply disappears after it’s used in dry ice blast cleaning. Dry ice doesn’t become a toxic waste or a disposal problem like many popular cleaning solvents.
10. Inhibits Bacteria & Mold Growth
Dry ice is a natural bacterial and fungal growth inhibitor because it’s -109 degrees Fahrenheit, which kills bacteria and mold [fungi] upon contact. When you clean with dry ice blasting, you’re also disinfecting.
Dry Ice can be used in:
• Mold cleaning
• Mold remediation
• Mold removal
• Mold clean up
• Fire clean up
• Soot odor removal
• Fire remediation
In addition to being clean and safe, it is also important to remember that dry ice is obtained as a byproduct of other industrial processes – i.e. it is made from reclaimed CO2. It does not produce CO2 or add CO2 to the atmosphere and therefore does not contribute to the greenhouse effect. Dry ice blasting is truly, and completely, environmentally friendly!
Choosing Come Clean for your Mold Cleanup
Mold clean-up, removal, remediation and renovation is a large part of our business. If you have this problem and do not go after it with CO2 / Dry Ice you are not utilizing the best technology/remedy currently available to your family, pets, home, tenants, business and property.
There is currently no more effective treatment to eradicate this cancer in buildings.
If you go about it any other way; you will be ahead of the game just selling the property now.
Take or make your best deal and move on.