Q: Am I being scammed by a mold expert? I found a 24” x 24” area of discolouration on my garage ceiling after a roof leak was discovered and repaired right away. One contractor wants to cut out the area and replace the drywall. That’ll cost $1200. Another contractor says I need $4000 of mold remediation work that’ll take three days of not using the garage. I have no technical knowledge and I’m afraid of being cheated. Can you help?
A: You’re right to be concerned because that $4000 estimate is crazy. If you’re replacing the moldy drywall, then presumably there’s no need to treat the remaining areas that have no mold. Even the $1200 is out of line for drywall replacement in such a small area. Also, it’s quite easy to kill mold yourself when it appears in a relatively small space like you’ve got. Using a registered fungicide on the mold would kill it completely. Judging by the photos you sent, I don’t think you even need to replace the drywall at all. Wait for things to warm up in spring, kill the mold (Concrobium Mold Control is the best product I know of for this and it’s non-toxic), then repaint. I think you’ll find the discolouration completely gone. Use a stain-blocking primer such as Zinnser’s B-I-N and you’ll be pleased.
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