Is HEPA Vacuuming Good for Mold in Crawl Space

HEPA vacuuming mold is pretty much standard with mold remediation contractors. Most of these contractors have been trained to apply disinfectants and use HEPA vacuuming to remove visible molds. I should also mention – most of these mold contractors don’t work in crawl spaces that often.

What is HEPA Vacuuming

The problem with HEPA vacuums is your shop vacuum or wet/dry vacuum can be converted to a HEPA vacuum by simply adding a HEPA Filter. HEPA stands for High-Efficiency Particulate Air or High-Efficiency Particulate Arrestance. Basically, that means that the filter can capture 99.9% of the 0.3 micron or larger particles of all air passing through the filter.

Since mold particles are from 4 microns to 20 microns a HEPA filter is used to capture them. HEPA filters are also in air scrubbers and air scrubbers are also used in mold remediation.

As I mentioned before, turning your shop-vac into a HEPA-vac doesn’t mean the mold is removed properly. If you have ever used a vacuum attachment, the brush can knock mold spores, dust, or whatever into the air in a way the vacuum cannot catch.

Image of mold in crawl space

Try to HEPA vacuum this mold

Vacuuming Crawl Space Mold

Addressing crawl space mold is unique versus mold in living spaces. In a living space, normally mold remediators are standing and the mold is growing on flat surfaces like drywall, but in a crawl space, the sub-floor can have nails that prevent the attachment from reaching the wood. Crawl spaces also have hard to reach rim joists and of course ductwork that can block attachments.

This is why we choose soda blasting crawl space mold and not HEPA vacuuming. In comparison, I would not soda blast mold off the drywall of your living space due to the destructive force of soda on the paper and the clean up would be horrendous.

If you are hiring a company to HEPA vacuum mold of the joists and sub-floor of your crawl space, make sure you check their work very well. Don’t let them smear the mold and then cover it up with spray foam or paint. Also, be sure they lower the humidity and dry the wood before HEPA vacuuming or applying any liquid mold chemicals.

Professional Mold Removal with Crawl Space Ninja

Do you need mold removal in your crawl space? If so, please contact Crawl Space Ninja and we will be glad to help. Also, let us know in the comments below if you had a good or bad experience with HEPA vacuuming in your crawl space.

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4 thoughts on “Is HEPA Vacuuming Good for Mold in Crawl Space”

  1. Hey Micheal. Thank you so much for the great resource that this site provides!!

    I am currently coming up with a game plan for mold remediation and encapsulating my crawlspace.

    I was thinking about soda blasting because as you have pointed out its the best method for removal, but it would also require me to obtain the soda blaster and learn to use properly at the potential cost of lots of wasted baking soda material. I enjoyed the customer video with the client who was in the air force and was tempted to take his soda blasting approach but some of the reviews about similar products make me wary of the potential learning curve and time required to use a small soda blaster as he did.

    I have a commercial HEPA vacuum from a previous project as well as an air scrubber and flexible duct hosing to create negative air pressure in the crawl space. If I HEPA vacuumed the crawlspace under negative air and then used a fogger would I be getting close to the cleaning of the soda blasting?

    Whichever removal approach I take I am planning on following with a disinfectant and protectant.

    Any input is greatly appreciated! Be blessed!

    1. It sounds like you will take the time to make sure the HEPA vacuuming is done properly. Your attention to detail will make a big difference. We have competitors with soda blasters that still don’t clean/remove all the mold. The tool is only as good as the one using it. Just like scrubbing joists, sub-floor with abrasive materials and cleaners. We did that for years before learning about soda and our projects looked really good. Not bragging on us but we wanted to make sure it was done correctly. Please feel free to share before and after pics with us if you like. Thank you.

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