Have you ever heard the saying, "If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is"? When it comes to tackling mold issues, this sentiment holds true about 9.9 times out of 10. Picture this: you're presented with two estimates for a mold remediation project. One promises a quick, low-cost solution with no demolition, while the other seems exorbitant, involving tearing down parts of your home. You're probably left with questions: What exactly is a mold fogger? Does it truly work? And why isn't it the industry standard for remediation?

These questions are valid, especially when you're faced with the dilemma of choosing between cost and effectiveness. We completely understand your concerns. After all, why pay more when you could potentially save thousands? But let's dive deeper into the realm of mold remediation to understand why using a mold fogger, although tempting, might not be the ultimate solution you're hoping for. And when you should use it!

A Mold Fogger: The Basics

So, what exactly is a mold fogger? This is a tool used to transform a chemical into a vapor and release it into your indoor environment. The vaporized formula interacts with airborne particles, including mold spores. The goal behind this process is to weigh them down enough to fall to the surface and/or break them down into smaller particles. 

Some products such as Benefect Decon 30 when fogged may help weigh down these smaller particles, forcing them to the floor, however, in the absence of cleaning to remove these particles, they’ll still remain in your environment contributing to your exposure. Other products designed to “kill”, “neutralize” or “deactivate” typically break spores down into smaller fragments which can still cause adverse health reactions in some. 

While fogging can help with smaller airborne particles, it doesn't eliminate them entirely. Without proper cleaning to remove these particles, they can persist and contribute to ongoing exposure. Moreover, some products claim to neutralize mold spores, but these smaller fragments can still trigger adverse reactions. 

These chemicals are also supposed to deal with mold colonies on surfaces in the home. While it may help to kill the surface layer of mold, and even this is not a guarantee, it does not deal with the proper removal and can allow the contamination to continue to exist in the environment. Therefore, it is not actually remediating the issue. 

It's a nuanced process that requires a comprehensive understanding of mold's behavior.

Mold Growth: An Underestimated Issue

a mold fogger

 Indoor mold growth is an often overlooked issue, which has led to misinformation and misguided decisions. Unfortunately, this lack of awareness has led to failed remediation attempts that not only waste money but also perpetuate health issues caused by mold exposure. It's time to shed light on this hidden problem and explore “solutions” like using a mold fogger.

The Mold Sitch

Understanding mold's lifecycle is crucial in comprehending why fogging alone isn't the answer. There are over 100,000 mold species, each reproducing by releasing microscopic spores into the environment. Once these spores find a suitable surface, they establish roots and start forming new colonies. Mold growth is akin to weeds taking root in your garden.

The key problem lies in these roots. Once they're established, completely eradicating the mold is essential. Just like pulling out weeds from the roots, mold must be removed entirely to prevent its regrowth. Fogging doesn't address this root cause. It might eliminate visible mold temporarily, but without uprooting the problem, it's only a matter of time before it returns.

Tiny Troublemakers

As a mold colony grows, it releases those microscopic particles into the surrounding environment. Some species of mold also release microscopic toxins called mycotoxins when threatened as well, further adding to the particle party. 

This gave birth to the common misconception that since mold is everywhere, it’s no big deal when it’s indoors. Not true! Yes, spores and mycotoxins have been blown all over the planet. But it’s a big, wide world out there, and they had a massive amount of space to disperse through.

This situation is nowhere near the same as mold growth indoors. Thanks to modern construction techniques pushing for net-zero energy efficiency, there’s very little airflow between indoor and outdoor environments. That means that most of the spores and mycotoxins released by the colony remain trapped within the walls of the home. The result is a contaminated environment full of particles. 

The health factor comes in largely due to the particle size in question. Thanks to their teeny, tiny size, they can be inhaled, absorbed, or ingested into the body. When the body sees these particles, it tags them as foreign invaders and deploys the immune system to get rid of them. 

When you encounter a few of these little particles throughout the day, this situation typically isn’t a problem. Your body will get rid of them in a jiff. However, sitting inside a home and breathing in who knows how many mold spores, mycotoxins, and bacteria particles is an entirely different story.


This level of exposure can result in the immune system getting overwhelmed and/or malfunctioning. When this occurs, it opens the door to a long list of symptoms as well as related autoimmune conditions, including Aspergillosis, Mast Cell Activation Syndrome, and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. 

Some common symptoms of exposure include: 
  • Headaches and migraines 
  • Rashes 
  • Hair loss 
  • Brain fog 
  • Chronic fatigue 
  • Mood swings 
  • Hormone imbalances 
  • Digestive issues 
  • Muscle and joint pain 
  • Respiratory problems 

The potential for any health problems is reason enough to dive deep into topics such as using a mold fogger and truly understanding what this technology is and isn’t capable of. It’s also what showcases the caliber of a remediation company. At the end of the day, a remediation protocol should be built around the purpose of protecting those within the home and ensuring they’re not continually exposed to these indoor contaminants and suffering from the reactions they can cause. 

The Effectiveness of a Mold Fogger: Piecing It Together

Now that we've unraveled the intricacies of mold and its growth, let's revisit the question: Why isn't using a mold fogger for remediation the definitive solution?

The Four Main Reasons 

  1. What about the moisture?
  2. Simply fogging for mold remediation does not take into consideration what led to the mold in the first place: a water damage issue. A source of water, humidity, or moisture had to take place at some point, and the end result was mold growth. 

    Using a mold fogger alone will not resolve the moisture issue. 

    If the issue that led to the water damage isn’t remedied, a habitable environment for mold will continue to remain in the home. When a spore comes in contact with this wet surface, it will create a whole new colony, and the entire process is started anew. 

  1. What about those roots?
  2. Going back to the hyphae, this root system will physically grow on whatever surface the mold colony is on. When that happens to be porous, such as drywall, carpet, or insulation, these roots will reach deep within the pockets of the surface. 

    Using a mold fogger for remediation does not remove the hyphae from the building material.

    The result: mold will grow back again. As the mold returns, it will continue its reproductive cycle, pumping spores and potentially mycotoxins back into that indoor space. Essentially, it’s money not well spent. 

    Not to mention, that’s why almost every dry fogging mold remediation company out there will recommend you have your home on an ongoing treatment plan. The "solution" is a band-aid and it helps create re-occurring revenue from customers because you will absolutely have to complete the fogging for mold process again in the future to remove the new contamination that was created.

  1. What About the Hidden Problems? 
  2. Remember, thanks to the small size of spores and mycotoxins, they can slowly make their way inside porous surfaces as well. Not only is this a contamination issue, but it allows mold colonies to develop in hidden areas like behind drywall. 

    The process of using a mold fogger will not be able to penetrate deep into interstitial cavities behind walls or ceilings.

    Without addressing the root cause of the problem, the structural degradation that often accompanies the presence of mold, and the contamination existing within, the surface will continue to degrade and mold will continue to colonize behind the walls or ceilings that were "treated". All of this means that contamination will continue to swirl around your environment.

    In a nutshell, the end result is once again wasted money and a toxic environment.

  1. What about the dead mold? 
  2. As the EPA states, even dead mold can trigger adverse health reactions. That’s why the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) says that "Remediators should not mist or fog disinfectants or sanitizers in an attempt to kill mold in lieu of source removal."¹³ Why? 

    Using a mold fogger does not remove all of the particles that can trigger adverse health reactions.

    While fogging for mold may deactivate spores and help kill surface mold, it then leaves all of these particles behind. Unless every square inch of the indoor environment is properly decontaminated, these particles will remain behind and continue triggering reactions. And again, that’s not even including what may be lurking within surfaces that fogging can not address. 

    Complete removal is a key piece of the puzzle.

The Path to Effective Remediation

remediation plan

While using a mold fogger might have its place as a supplementary step, it's not a standalone solution. Effective mold remediation requires a comprehensive approach that tackles the root cause, eradicates contamination, and prevents future growth. 

Yes, that usually means demolition and a much larger bill, but the contamination must be physically removed and the source that led to the problem resolved. When it comes to simply using a mold fogger, the cheap and demolition-free route will not give you the results you hoped for: an environment that you and your family can heal in. 

A comprehensive remediation protocol may seem more expensive upfront, but it will save you a lot of time, money, and energy in the long run once the problem is resolved. That’s why you should always expect a qualified mold remediation company to help you based on three pillars for success. 

These three pillars are: 
  1. Remediate the sources and mold properly 
  2. Identify and address the problems that led to the sources in the first place (otherwise, the mold will just grow back)
  3. Eradicate all contamination that exists from the mold problem, including mycotoxins and bacteria

Each step addresses the issues listed above as to why using a mold fogger is not the go-to method for remediation. 

HomeCleanse Services exemplifies this comprehensive approach. Our thorough process ensures a safe and healthy indoor environment, particularly for immunocompromised individuals.

When to Use a Mold Fogger

a mold fogger

Using a mold fogger can be incorporated in "Phase 2" of remediation, where surfaces of the home are cleaned to remove any contamination that was created by the mold colony.

This is only something that should be tackled after "Phase 1" is completed, which includes removing the sources of mold that are creating the contamination and correcting the conditions that led to the mold growing in the first place. If a company does "Phase 2" without doing "Phase 1" of remediation first, you’ll end up having to reinvest in both phases again. But this time, in the right order to successfully solve the problem.

This failed attempt results in more money out of your pocket, additional time wasted, and the inability to heal. So, while using a mold fogger is a very useful part of mold remediation, it should never be the end-all-be-all.

How to Use a Mold Fogger 

Before jumping into using a mold fogger, it’s important to understand how to properly handle the tool so that it works to remove particles from your indoor environment. 

Fogging Process:
  1. Fill up the fog machine of your choice with a botanical solution such as EC3 or Benefect Decon 30.
  2. Turn on the machine and apply the product with the fogger to the surface or item you intend to clean.
  3. Using one side of the microfiber towel, clean the item or surface in a circular motion.
  4. Observe the towel and notice if there is any residue, if there are repeat steps 1 and 2 using a new side of the towel until the surface is clean and there is no residue on the towel.

In Conclusion: The True Investment

happy home

Mold remediation isn't a task to be taken lightly. While cost-effective options like using a mold fogger might seem enticing, the true investment lies in your health and the well-being of your loved ones. An all-encompassing approach might entail a higher upfront expense, but it saves you from future headaches, expenses, and potential health issues.

By delving into topics like mold fogging, you're taking a step towards awareness and prevention. The more informed you are, the better equipped you'll be to safeguard your home against mold-related risks. Ultimately, your home's health is your responsibility, and the more we collectively shed light on this issue, the greater the impetus for change.

Health begins at home.™ Don't compromise on your well-being—invest wisely, prioritize effective remediation, and create a safe haven for you and your family.

Still Have Questions?

A member of our team is here to help!  Click on “Get Started ➤” below to book a consultation with a member of the HOMECLEANSE team. We have a few quick questions that will help us put together a roadmap to solve or prevent all of your mold problems.

Two minutes of your time could lead to better health for you and your family.