Tag Archives: HERTSMI

Mold Remediation or Hi Tech?

–> If you’ve ever had a flooded basement, a leaky pipe, or a leaky roof.
–> If food tends to mold easily if you leave it on the counter.
–> If you are achy all over and blaming it on “old age”
–> If you are forgetful bordering early Alzheimer’s Disease

There may be hidden mold or other airborne toxins:
VOC’s, formaldehyde, bacteria, viruses, radon, pesticides, fire retardants, carbon monoxide… our air is just not guaranteed to be good. If you have not tested your indoor air quality, you may have a problem.

Some questions that came up during our $40,000 remediation:
How much is enough?
How much is too much?
Will this work?
How am I going to pay for this?

Why are there so many sick buildings?
1.) rising cost of repairs: some people don’t have the money for adequate repairs
2.) unskilled workers: anyone with a hammer can build a house – no education required
3.) increasingly tight houses: rising costs of fuel, insulate more, stagnant air
4.) outdoor air is not good: even with air exchange, outdoor air is getting worse
5.) not enough people know you can safely clean indoor air of all organic toxins

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Why should we be concerned with air quality?
~92% of people worldwide live with excessive air pollution, contributing to problems like strokes, heart disease and lung cancer ~ World Health Organization, September of 2016

~Americans spend over 90% of their time indoors.

Indoor air has 2 to 5 times more pollutants than outdoor air.

~At least 30% of the buildings in the United States experience indoor air quality problems. ~The World Health Organization, 1984

~Indoor air pollution, commonly called sick building syndrome, costs businesses $60 billion annually ~ U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

In 2007-2011, my family became so sick from mold that when we found out what was making us sick, we did whatever it took to breathe clean air again. We threw out almost everything we owned and spent a ton of MONEY and TIME on mold remediation.
We were homeless, between motel rooms and tents, for 300 days.

The First Time – We Did Mold Remediation
Collectively, our diagnosis and symptoms were: Lyme Disease, Bartonella, Epstein Barr Virus, Mycoplasma, Babesia, Cysts, Lesions, Asthma, Allergies, walking pneumonia, high liver enzymes, nausea, diarrhea, food allergies, headaches, extreme pain, extreme fatigue, seizures, chest pain, depression, mood swings, temperature dis-regulation, weight gain, weight loss, memory loss, dizziness, tinnitus and acne.

We left and took nothing with us.  We practiced extreme avoidance.  Everything was in Ziploc bags and we took very little.  We threw a lot of our stuff out.  We tried to save some stuff by cleaning with various mixtures made for mold.
Here is a detailed blog on what we did to get out and not take the mold with us.

The only thing I found that was working to clean clothes and the few non-porous things we took with us was ammonia.  So, we stuck with ammonia for the remediation.

We owned a home we could not live in.  And so, we lived in tents, motel rooms and my husband worked on the house that made us sick. I did the research on what to do, and he did the work.

We were sick.  Camping and living in hotel rooms is not “fun” when you are sick, the kids are sick and the dog is sick. We had to do it because we could not find a safe place to rent.

We looked at dozens of homes and apartments.  And I got sick at ALL of them.

A 1984 World Health Organization Committee
report suggested that up to 30 percent of new and
remodeled buildings worldwide may be the subject
of excessive complaints related to indoor air quality

He threw out three quarters of what we owned and ripped the house down to studs.

It was financially and emotionally gut-wrenching. Never-mind how sick we were. Try being homeless when you are sick. It’s almost too much to bear.

Mold remediation was difficult and expensive.

The whole house had to be decontaminated.  This was the system that worked for us.
1.) Ozone blast- which means you have to get all people, plants and pets out of the house because ozone, at the levels you need to kill mold will also kill anything living.
2.) Clean every surface with ammonia and cotton rags – wear mask & gloves
3.) HEPA vacuum

Here are the details of how we did Mold Remediation back in 2011-2012.

It took over 10 months, and over $40,000.  Finally, we were not getting sick in the house anymore.

We moved back in.
We continued to practice “extreme avoidance”  by bagging up all papers and throwing things out or banishing things to the porch or back to the storage unit if they made us sick.

We went back to the 3 step system if I started feeling sick.  Ozone. Ammonia. HEPA.

We were constantly cleaning.

I had to hire someone to do deep cleaning once a week.

We did a HERTSMI test every 6 months or so. For the first 2 1/2 years after the first remediation our HERTSMI’s were a 4 or a 6 – consistently low and enough to keep me feeling our house was fairly safe.  Anything under a 12 is considered safe for most people.

Mold Remediation Has NO GUARANTEE
If you are not testing for toxic mold, you will not know if you have it. I recommend doing the HERTSMI every 6 months… whether you think you have a problem or not!

August, 2014, 31 months after we moved back into our home, our HERTSMI score was a 20.
(anything over 12 is NOT SAFE)

I didn’t want to lose all my stuff again.

I didn’t want to be homeless again.

I didn’t have the money to do another remediation!

I found this testimony of Bill and Ruth Pillings using Hi Tech Air reactors. They had a flood and the mold inspector told them they had to replace the walls. They decided not to. They got Hi Tech. They had mold testing done at their house for a year after and the levels were very close to zero. Listen to them tell the story. 🙂

We Were Getting Sick – Something Had to Be Done!

I remember thinking, “If they can put one of these machines in their house after a flood and they can feel better and the mold can actually disappear… maybe this thing will work?”

Then, I clicked on the name, Ray Robison, which brought me to a page with all the videos Ray Robison uploaded to youtube – and they were all about this machine that was getting rid of mold and pet odors.  One of them was an “Environmental Expert” named Dick Lee who teaches at the college level. He said he saw mold counts and formaldehyde levels go down dramatically.

There was not a company name or a link to any website from those youtube videos — so I had to do my research.  I found out Ray Robison owned a company called Hi Tech Air Solutions out of Moore, Oklahoma.

I got Ray’s phone number off the website and gave him a call.  I told him about our situation and asked him if he thought his machines could help me.

He said, “Yes. – without a doubt”

From August 2014 to November 2014, I researched and asked around to people I knew who had been sick from mold.  No one I knew in the mold community had ever tried a Hi Tech air reactor. I called Ray a couple of more times. He was very helpful answering questions.

I was devastated.  I was frightened.  I did not want to have to leave my home and go live in a tent again.  If I was going to live in a tent I wasn’t doing it in upstate New York again.  Too cold.  I had just spent 3 months on Kauai and my two oldest daughters are living there.

I told my husband, we either get one of these machines or I’m flying back to Kauai and I will camp on the beach, stay with my daughter or stay with friends until I find a place.  The weather is beautiful all the time and I felt great when I was staying in Kapaa.

Then, I went one step further.

I told him we had to buy a machine for my parents.

Here was my thinking: If this does work, I want to help my parents too.  And I want to be able to visit them again.  My mom had been very sick and I could not go into their house without getting very, very sick.

I bought 2 Model 101’s.  With the feeling that these were going to work… but if they didn’t, I could send them back.

There was a 30 Day Money Back Guarantee.

So, I was still doubting.  But extremely hopeful.

I remember the night they arrived.  The tracking number said they would be arrive Wednesday, November 19th – the day after my birthday.  I had a class to teach online at 7pm and I was not feeling good from the mold in my home.  I couldn’t wait for those machines to get here.

The UPS driver got here at 6:40 – I had already called UPS at 5:00 because the package had not gotten here and they explained that they deliver until 7pm and my packages were out for delivery.  I met the UPS driver at the truck.  I wanted my machines!

The Second Time – We Got Hi Tech
We had some of the symptoms coming back: brain fog, nausea, and fatigue.

Our HERTSMI was at 20 in August.

In November of 2014 – we got a Hi Tech air reactor, installed the bulbs, plugged it in and turned the Hi Tech air reactor on.

healthy personThat was the first day of the rest of my life.  We have been breathing cleaner air ever since.  I felt better almost immediately and definitely felt better when I was in the room with the machine for the first few weeks.

Now, I can be any where in my house and the air just feels clean and light.

Our follow up HERTSMI was a 6 – down 14 points.

If somebody comes over from a mold house or brings moldy things in the machine cleans the stuff that comes into the house.  I might feel an initial reaction to mold and other toxins on stuff… but the machine cleans it up.

I travel with Hi Tech and I clean my car with Hi Tech.

I can shop at thrift stores again and the machine cleans the moldy smell off stuff.

I have saved books, artwork, photos, clothes, papers and so much more.

When the Hi Tech 101 helped me so much, I called up Ray, the owner of the company and I said, “I’m going to tell people about these.”

And Ray said, “Then, I’m going to pay you.”

You don’t have to worry about me just telling you about something because I might get a commission. I know it’s instinct to not trust someone’s opinion because they might be just trying to sell something. There is no way I could ever tell you something works if it didn’t work. How could I ever make up such a story?

Money Back GuaranteeAnyway, the company has a money back guarantee. A company just could not offer a money back guarantee if the product didn’t work!

The money back guarantee was one of the biggest reasons I bought a Hi Tech Air Reactor.  If you have any doubt whether or not this could work, the money back guarantee should seal the deal.

I am thrilled every time someone gets to experience clean air the way I have been able to enjoy clean air.  I think every school, library, public building and home should be properly sized for clean air with Hi Tech Air Solutions.

Contact me to Get a Size Estimate for Your Home or Commerial Building.

Because of Hi Tech:

Many people are able to live and work in safe buildings, not sick buildings
Many people have started to heal from chronic illness because they are no longer being poisoned by their air.

It gives me great joy to see people be helped by Hi Tech!

No one should ever have to throw their stuff away and be homeless.

I have a friend who threw her stuff away 5 times over 15 years.  I gave her a Hi Tech 101 and now she and her daughter will never have to throw their stuff out and be homeless again.

Plug it in and Breathe!!!

Every building has some mold or other types of indoor air pollution. Hi Tech can always improve the quality of your indoor air.

Sometimes I recommend some repairs/remediation and Hi Tech.

Never, would I recommend mold remediation only without getting Hi Tech.

Mold remediation has no guarantee. Hi Tech has a guarantee.

You decide.


There is a Spring Sale through Friday, March 31st. 10% off.   Contact me Today.


 

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HERTSMI Testing for Mold (and ERMI)

Dr. Klinghardt and Dr. Shoemaker, 2 well known doctors who are seeing mold patients recommend the HERTSMI-2 test from Mycometrics

The HERTSMI-2 or HERTSMI detects 5 of the indoor toxic molds that grow in varying amounts of moisture. These 5 molds give a realistic educated guess of whether mold is a problem in a home or building.

There is a grading system or a “scorecard” to plug the numbers into and you get a good idea of how moldy a place is compared to other homes and whether or not a building is sick enough to make people sick.

“Only the ERMI and HERTSMI have been associated with sequential activation of innate immune responses, not air testing.” ~Dr. Shoemaker. Meaning it is the only test that he found that is consistently in line with lab results for CIRS, despite its drawbacks.

Buy a new box of unscented swiffer cloths from the drugstore.
This is important as an opened box that may be stored in your house may
be collecting mold toxins while sitting. Take one swiffer cloth from the
middle of the box – just in case the store was moldy – it’s more likely
that the middle cloths are not cross-contaminated.

Inside the building you want to test, use a clean swiffer to collect dust
from as many as ten sites, trying to get dust from the locations most
likely to have collected dust with mold in it.

Old dust may be a better indicator of what you want to find out than new
dust will be, if you are testing somewhere to see if you can live there…
or if someone is getting sick.

Put the swiffer in a ziploc and send that, the chain of custody form, and
$150 to the address on the chain of custody form.

You will receive the result via email five days after they receive it. You
can get faster results by paying extra, and you can overnight the sample
and form to speed up the process. Mycometrics is in New Jersey.

Make sure you check the HERTSMI box!
The HERTSMI costs $150 and can be ordered from Mycometrics.com

When you get the results back by email and/or snail mail plug your numbers in the HERTSMI scorecard:

The HERTSMI “Scorecard”
DOWNLOAD THE SCORECARD HERE

We use a point system. Units are Spore E/mg.
       
10 points are assigned for
Aspergillus penicilloides >500      
Aspergillus versicolor >500
Chaetomium globosum >125
Stachybotrys chartarum >125
Wallemia sebi >2500
6 points are assigned for
Aspergillus penicilloides 100-499
Aspergillus versicolor 100-499
Chaetomium globosum 25-124
Stachybotrys chartarum 25-124
Wallemia sebi 500-2499
4 points are assigned for
Aspergillus penicilloides 10-99
Aspergillus versicolor 10-99
Chaetomium globosum 5-24
Stachybotrys chartarum 5-24
Wallemia sebi 100-499
Interpretation of HERTSMI-2 Score
<11 Statistically safe for re-entry for those with CIRS
11-15 Borderline; clean first and re-test before re-entry
>15 Dangerous for those with CIRS. Do not enter.
Disclaimer:
HERTSMI-2 is a building index. No one HERTSMI-2 can possibly show all areas of a given building.
HERTSMI-2 does not replace careful observation of symptoms and lab results obtained following re-exposure

If you have already done an ERMI and you want to use the HERTSMI scorecard, just pull the values for the 5 molds in the HERTSMI and plug the values into the scorecard above.

The ERMI

If you want a more detailed report that looks for 36 molds instead of just 5 of the most toxic molds… The Environmental Relative Moldiness Index or ERMI has been a highly valuable tool for many practitioners and patients alike in evaluating the potential of ongoing mold exposure in the indoor environment.

It is not uncommon for an air testing sample to return negative results in the same environment where an ERMI is highly positive.

Given that some toxic molds are not readily airborne, air sampling is generally not an effective tool for indoor air quality; thus dust sample testing using the ERMI may be a better option.

Dust is a sampling of the air over a longer period of time… while air testing shows a snap shot in time.

This panel, developed by the United States EPA, includes a total of 36 fungal species/clusters that are broad enough to help address the mold problems of water-damaged indoor environments and to help assess the risk of mold exposure.

The ERMI gives a ratio of indoor and outdoor molds and I will advise you to pull the five molds measured in the HERTSMI-2 and follow the “scorecard” for evaluting both the ERMI and the HERTSMI tests.

The ERMI costs $285-$290 from Mycometrics – you save $5 if you use your own swiffer cloth and ziploc bag as described above for the HERTSMI. The swiffer kit or the vacuum kit can be ordered from Mycometrics.com Some people have gone to other labs for the ERMI testing but I recommend Mycometrics 100%. We have found inconsistent and unreliable results from other labs.

No test is absolute. If even one person is sick in a home or a building, and your HERTSMI comes back low… that person can be reacting to low amounts of mold. I have known people who are still reacting to mold when their HERTSMI is a ZERO! The more immune-compromised we are, the more sensitive we are.

Other things to look into if your HERTSMI is low and you still suspect the environment:

  • Radon
  • VOC’s
  • formaldehyde
  • pet dander
  • microbial fragments
  • Electro-magnetic frequencies
  • smart meters
  • water
  • food

There is a home air test for mold that I talk about on this page — scroll down below the HERTSMI instructions which are basically a repeat of this page!

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Hi Tech Air Reactor – Before and After Testing with Mycometrics – HERTSMI – ERMI

In late July of 2014, I came home from 3 months away and I was not feeling well at all.

I gained 20 pounds in 10 days.

50 pounds in 10 weeks.

I had no energy.

I had a stabbing pain on the right side of my torso, near my rib cage.

I felt like I was being poisoned.  I know that feeling because I lived in sick buildings that have made me sick.  Now, I am sensitive to even small amounts of mold.

So, I did a mold test (ERMI) with a vacuum kit from Mycometrics in August, 2014.

Aspergillus penicilloides 27 10-99 (4pts)
Aspergillus versicolor 27  10-99 (4pts)
Chaetomium globosum 5  5-24 (4pts)
Stachybotrys chartarum 16  5-24 (4pts)
Wallemia sebi 290 100-499 (4pts)

I was sadly disappointed with the results, but not surprised.  See the 16 of Stachybotrys in this test? Stachy is also known as Black Mold and Toxic Mold.  This and if you add up the points on the right, (4 + 4 + 4 + 4 + 4) adds up to 20 points.

According to Dr. Shoemaker’s HERTSMI Scorecard

Interpretation of HERTSMI-2 Score
<11      Statistically safe for re-entry for those with CIRS**
11-15   Borderline; clean first and re-test before re-entry
>15      Dangerous for those with CIRS**. Do not enter.

**CIRS is Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome

I was searching for something that could make my house better without going through the remediation we had in 2011-2012.  My husband and I could not stand the thought or the expense of being homeless again.  There had to be a better way.

I found these testimonies on Hi Tech Air Solutions air reactors and I started watching every YouTube video I could find on these machines.

I called the owner, Ray Robison and he seemed very sure his machines could help me.

I started running a Hi Tech 101 in my home on November 19th, 2014.  I felt better that day but a week later, I felt really good.

I was feeling better, so I wasn’t too concerned about follow up testing.  All the testing Hi Tech Air Solutions had done was with air testing… none with dust testing like Mycometrics does.  I had the before testing… so I decided to do the after testing with the same method.

Aspergillus penicilloides 120 100-499 (6pts)
Aspergillus versicolor 6 <10 (0pts)
Chaetomium globosum 2 <5 (0pts)
Stachybotrys chartarum <1 <5(0pts)
Wallemia sebi 69 <100 (0pts)

Most of the numbers went down.  The total score on this HERTSMI is 6 points.

In 3 months of running the Hi Tech 101, our HERTSMI score went from 20 down to 6.

During that time, I had brought in lots of things, people, mail that I used to be careful with.  So the mold count (A.penicillum) that did go up could definitely be explained by cross contamination.

The most important thing?  — I feel great in my home.

The Hi Tech air reactor has changed the way I live. I used to have to be really careful about cross contamination (bring moldy things or people into my home) — I don’t worry about this anymore. I have a whole house air cleaner that is working for me 24/7.

I still get an inflammatory response when I go to sick buildings or the air outside is very polluted. One of my personal goals is to learn how to reduce my body’s reaction to toxins.

While going outside on certain days or going to other buildings that are “sick buildings” can make me sick, I always know I can come home to air that is cleaned with Hi Tech Air Solutions air reactors.

 

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