Black Mold on Hold is the awarding winning technology that is the most significant improvement to bathroom sanitation since the invent of toilet.
There are over 10 million people suffering from the debilitating symptoms of Fibromyalgia. With 10 million people suffering and the number growing this is a real epidemic. What is causing this epidemic? Tim Wood, the award winning inventor and founder of Barracuda Brackets has a provocative theory.
There are more than 350,000,000 installed toilets in America and the means there are 350 million open holes under toilets in the wettest floors of any dwelling. That is correct, we put a computer in the hand of virtually every American that can let you see who you are talking with across the world but we still have an open hole in the floor under every toilet. The open hole in the floor is an reminiscent of outhouses hole in the board technology and has been around for hundreds and if you believe the Chinese thousands of years. This open hole in the floor is where any toilet is connected to the sewer pipe and this connector has traditionally been referred to as the toilet flange or closet flange. It is also the hole that disease laden bugs including cockroaches use to enter your homes. To make matters worse toilet leaks are common and the raw sewage uses this open hole in the floor to flow to all areas below. Unfortunately this disease laden sewage can feed deadly mold.
The engineering of this flange has not changed that much in 100 years except for the materials that can be used. Metal ones are the choice of plumbing engineers because of the perceived strength that comes with being metal but WILL leak sewage into your home someday. PVC and ABS flanges also being made. The PVC or ABS flanges will not rust like the metal ones but can easily be broken but none of these flanges seal the open hole in the floor. All open slot toilet flanges have at least 8 different openings in them that all lead to the sub floor below. That means all the building material below the flange is vulnerable to raw sewage exposure and mold growth when there is sewage or water present. The manufacturers of these flanges know that the metal flange they make can rust (even the stainless steel ones can rust) break down and fail. They also are aware that when metal flanges rust the metal that supports the seal needed between the flange and the toilet is compromised and that is when you have a toilet leak. I know this because the manufactures of the metal flanges also manufacture replacement metal rings for these same rusted metal flanges. This also means that these manufacturers, plumbers and sellers all know that raw sewage is getting into homes, schools, restaurants across America every time there is a toilet leak.
Now consider what the toilet does. Hundreds of gallons of disease laden raw sewage flows from the toilet bowl through that flange each week. On the front page of this website there is a list of the diseases that raw sewage and cockroaches carry but you also have to add to any list the communicable diseases the user of the toilet has. If the user of a toilet has a communicable disease then their waste also has it. There is a perfect storm rumbling in the distance, can you heard some thunder?
I was a Plumbing representative for 12 years before starting Barracuda. I dealt with, spoke with and worked with plumbers every day. I was told by plumbers just how common toilet leaks are, in fact they told me the average plumber deals with at least 1 toilet leak service call each week. If you google “how many plumbers there are in America” you will see that there are over 460,000 plumbers. How many service calls per year across America for toilet leaks is easy to estimate. Whether a plumber deals with 1 service call per week or 1 per month the amount of homes, restaurants, schools that have raw sewage pouring into them is conservatively 5 million and this doesn’t not include the home owner that deals with the toilet leak themselves. Simply put in the last 10 years conservatively 1 out every 7 toilets in America has been exposed to raw sewage which means the users of these toilets have been exposed.
Why are plumbing engineers still specifying this old outhouse technology for the schools restaurants and business buildings we all use?
There are those reading this saying to themselves that they know that they do not have or never have had a toilet leak. Keep reading. When you use some else’s toilet you do not know the history of that toilet, so you could be exposed and not know it. The toilet does not make or maintain a water tight seal with the floor that it is mounted on. The bathroom is the wettest floor in any building. Shower over spray, mopping the floor, washing the dog or water dripping off you as you dry yourself after a bath water does pool on bathroom floor and since the base of the toilet is not water tight water will find its’ way under the toilet. In fact, I have a video posted on this site that shows how water uses grout lines in tile floors to flow under the toilet so every toilet is suspect to mold growth.
What is going on under a toilet that has had or still has a toilet leak and/or exposed to water. This fluid will start rotting the area around the toilet flange and below and that moisture can support deadly mold growth. If water can trickle under a toilet or the disease laden sewage that is stewing and fermenting in the areas below the toilet then a perfect storm of harmful microorganisms that the sewage or mold emits can flow out in the air around the base of the toilet. Simply put , if water can get in, microorganisms and spores can get out. You cannot see what you’re breathing and you do not know the history of the public toilets you or your family uses. The toilet may look shiny and clean but what could be emitted around them can really hurt you.
What does any or all of this have to do with Fibromyalgia? Those suffering diagnosed with Fibromyalgia or loved ones supporting them spend countless hours trying to figure out what happened by searching the net, how did they get this affliction, and how do they can get relief and never connect their suffering to a toilet. Many Medical doctors now believe that fibromyalgia is really chronic mold exposure.
It is my contention that somehow these 10 million victims somewhere or at some time have been exposed to one of the 50 million toilets that has had or is leaking and what is growing under it victimized them. I also contend that all this suffering and the millions of dollars in property damage from sewage leaks is preventable.
Move over Mesothelioma, here comes Fibromyalgia litigation caused by preventable mold exposure.
Where is the IAPMO on this and aren’t they supposed to be making plumbing codes that protect us? IAPMO is the International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials (1-909-472-4100). They write the current Uniform Plumbing Code used as a basis in all 50 States which is meant to represent the best interest of the general public and to keep them safe as it pertains to plumbing. IAPMO gets its funding in part by license fees paid for by plumbing manufactures including those that make open slot toilet flanges. My company does not use IAPMO, does not pay any fees to IAPMO and make products that either exceed or meet the current plumbing code.
IAPMO does allow the public to make Emergency as well as normal plumbing code change recommendations. In October of 2016 I sent an Emergency code change TIA to IAPMO. I recommended that Toilet flanges be on par with floor drains and have to be suitably flanged to make a water tight seal with the floor. In the TIA I discuss what is detailed above. I felt that the new award-winning technology I developed that seals the hole in the floor, sheds light on the short comings of old technology of the past and that immediate action needs to be taken. This code change TIA-UPC-001-15 was rejected by the IAPMO Technical Committee. I requested a hearing so that I could hear firsthand why. On March 9 2017 a meeting took place with the Standard Council. I explained everything detailed above and the very first question told me all I needed to know about IAPMO. IAPMO Standard Council’s lawyer asked me “What proof I had that sewage under a toilet fed mold”. My response I knew fell on deaf ears. I said ”Information was readily available in the public domain on what can feed mold and where mold can grow and that mold can literally grow anywhere there is moisture and a food source”. I went on to explain that this technology was meant to seal the hole in the floor and to keep sewage away from areas that are not readily cleanable. On March 10, I got the formal denial.
In October 2017 I made a formal code change request. 402.6.1. to IAPMO Here is the change.
402.6.1 Closet Rings (Closet Flanges). Closet rings (closet flanges) for water closets or similar fixtures shall be of an approved type and shall be copper alloy, copper, hard lead, cast-iron, galvanized malleable iron, ABS, PVC, or other approved materials. Each such closet ring (closet flange) shall be approximately 7 inches (178 mm) in diameter and, where installed, shall, together with the soil pipe, present a 11/2 inch (38 mm) wide flange or face to receive the fixture gasket or closet seal.
Caulked-on closet rings (closet flanges) shall be not less than 1/4 of an inch (6.4 mm) thick and not less than 2 inches (51 mm) in overall depth.
Closet rings (closet flanges) shall be burned or soldered to lead bends or stubs, shall be caulked to cast-iron soil pipe, shall be solvent cemented to ABS and PVC, and shall be screwed or fastened in an approved manner to other materials.
Closet bends or for stubs shall be cut-off so as to present a smooth surface even with the top of the closet ring before the rough inspection is called.
Closet rings (closet flanges) shall be adequately designed and secured to support fixtures connected thereto, and flanged to provide a watertight joint with the floor.
I merely added the common sense addition that toilet flanges be on par with drains. The underlined words are the additions. Here is the substantiation required for reasoning behind the code change.
Every bottom drop toilet has to be connected to the DWV pipe requiring a hole in the floor. This unsealed hole can allow sewage laden water onto the surface of the sub floor under the toilet and flow into the area below causing property damage when the toilet leaks. Water from shower over spray and other bathroom circumstances can pool on the floor and then can seep under the toilets base eventually dripping into this hole. Water can easily use grout seams between floor tiles allowing water to get under a toilet. Regardless the source, any water present along with the building material available can support the growth of mold which is an undisputed and a scientific fact. Mold exposure is a proven killer. Mold spores growing under the toilet can seep out from under the toilet’s base the same way water flows in. When mold is present spores can flow into the bathroom 24 hours a day where anyone can inhale them. Many Medical Doctors now believe that mold spore inhalation can be a contributing factor to the Fibromyalgia epidemic and might even be the cause. Raw sewage includes any contagious disease the user of the toilet has posing health risks to everyone below or around a leaking toilet and could affect other non-infected family members. In apartment buildings potential victims also includes people from apartments living below where the raw sewage laden water flows. The diseases in raw sewage include Campylobacteriosis, Cryptosporidiosis, Encephalitis, Gastroenteritis, and including any contagious disease the toilet user has including Hepatitis A, E-Coli, mumps and many others. The health risks could also be from disease laden insects including cockroaches using the DWV pipes surface as a pathway into the home through the unsealed hole under the toilet. Cockroaches can carry bacteria including salmonella, staphylococcus, and streptococcus and viruses including the polio virus. Cockroaches can crawl out from under the toilets base into other living areas. A properly installed and leak tested toilet does not give consumers protection in lieu of a flange installed watertight with the floor. Because; 1. The seal between the toilet and the flange could become compromised. 2. It does not keep insects out. 3. It does not keep water from seeping under the toilet base. 4. It should not be considered a reason to justify keeping an open hole under a toilet. This code language change would require toilets flanges to be adequately designed and secured to support fixtures connected thereto, and suitably flanged to provide a water-tight joint in the floor, like every other floor drain.
This was also denied. IAPMO is now on record for not supporting the sealing of the hole under a toilet. This is barbaric. IAPMO does not support language that would require toilet flanges to have any safety features like every floor drain has. If you get hurt remember this.
If all this isn’t bad enough we haven’t discussed the area under the toilet that is not under the toilet flange. Tiling the bathroom floor is very common with plumbing industry using IAPMO, the home building code people for tiling standards is ANSI. ANSI is the American National Standards Institute and this organization seeds this code writing to an Organization named the Tile Council of North America (864-646-8453).
In America right now there is NO standard or requirement for the tile installer, home builder or any contractor to have to completely tile the floor up to the edge of the toilet flange. Each tile installer’s mood at the time will determine how much of the floor under your toilet is tiled. The only standard that is followed is that the edges of the toilet base cover the edges of the tile. This is important because the wood material area of the floor not tiled becomes more food for mold growth.
In 2016, I proposed to the National Tile Council of North America the first floor code of its kind under A108.02 that would require that the entire floor up the flange be tiled for health reasons. The initial vote for consideration was passed with 83% approving the code change to move forward. It took over 2 years for this code to meander through the committees with many obstructions but a vote finally took place in 2018. The voting committee is about 60 members from a variety of business backgrounds that is meant to be a cross section of American Industry. To pass 75% of the committee votes would have to be affirmative. Of the 60 voting members 40% of the membership represents labor unions so you can see where this going. The labor component did not support any code language requiring them to do tile the entire floor up to the flange. This faction actually told me that this new language would slow down their work and add more work to complete the floor. This new code language requiring that tile installers actually have to finish the floor was defeated.
ASNI is now on record that tile installers can do what they want with your floor. That open spaces around the toilet flange that can feed deadly mold is okay with them. If you get hurt remember this.
When you walk into any bathroom you do not know how clean it really is. The bathroom can look clean but it’s really a crap shoot (no pun intended). I tried to get the code changed in two different industries that would help protect the general public but have failed.
What about the sellers of toilet flanges? I have approached many national retailers and had some success. Home Depot is a good company and what I have to say about them is directed only to the buyers. I did a test market selling my flanges to Home Depot in less than 3% of their stores. Home Depot knows everything that was detailed above because I told them. When I told them the customers in the other 97% of their stores deserved the option of buying a toilet flange with safety features that would protect them from mold and property damage but they said “no”and then I said “good-bye” to Home Depot and no longer sell to them. This is similar to Lowes, again a good company and the buyers are responsible for what happens next but just like Home Depot, I no longer sell to LOWES for the same reason and they do not offer to their customers any flanges with safety features. FERGUSON, F.W. WEBB, VP SUPPLY, SECURITY SUPPLY, CAPITOL DISTRICT SUPPLY and many other plumbing wholesalers said no to offering the option of safe toilet flange to their customers and only sell open slot toilet flanges that have no safety features. It’s like going onto a car lot and only getting to choose from cars with no seat belts.
What does this tell you about them? They do not care if you get Fibromyalgia/mold disease, have property damage or even get sick.
What is next? Here’s a hint.
The day I announced “Black Mold on Hold” back in the spring of 2016, we were on the front page of Business Review, Market Watch, Yahoo Business and Reuters. That day I got three phones calls. They were not from plumbing wholesalers or plumbers. They were from 3 different personal injury law firms located across America. Since then I have educated these firms on how my system solves a problem that the industry doesn’t want solved becuase they are making too much money. That day engineers specifying, contractors installing, retailers selling and manufacturers making flanges that are known to fail allowing disease laden sewage and/or cockroaches into the home became a “choice” and with that choice comes liability to those that will be injured. There are 10 million people that right now should believe that they have just found the smoking gun.