Mold growth is a major problem in many homes today. Although there are many ways to deal with a mold infestation, the best approach would be to prevent its growth. This can be done by controlling moisture levels in your home.
Outlined below by, AWA Environmental, are nine ways to prevent excess moisture in the house from experts in mold inspection in Austin TX.
1. AWA Environmental Recommend you Check Problem Areas For Issues And Fix Them Immediately
While it may be impossible to make your home mold-proof, you can certainly make it more resistant to mold. The first step to making your home mold-resistant would be by identifying common problem areas, then taking the necessary measures to fix the issue. Flooding in the basement, frequent condensation on the windows upstairs, and a persistent leak could be the reason you always have a mold issue. Taking extreme measures such as removing the carpet in the basement, waterproofing it, and even installing mold-resistant products could solve moisture issues for good. Repairing or replacing damaged gutters and working on the drainage system might also help lower moisture levels in the basement.
2. Keep The House Dry
Strive to keep your home as dry as possible once done fixing the problem areas. Any case of dampness should be addressed immediately, or within 24 hours to prevent mold growth. Whether it is a light spill on the carpet, a leaky pipe in the bathroom, or water seeping into the basement due to heavy rainfall, have it fixed and dried immediately. Any furniture, bedding, or carpets exposed to water damage should be attended to, to limit the amount of moisture in the house. Be sure to wipe the bathroom dry after taking a shower, and remove all clothes from the washing machine. Either use the tumble drier or hang them in the clothesline outside to dry.
3. Ensure The House Is Well Ventilated
Many of the house chores may promote increased moisture levels. Even the simplest activities such as cooking, doing laundry, taking a shower, or even drying your clothes release lots of moisture into the air, creating a favorable environment for mold growth. This kind of humidity can, however, be controlled by ensuring the house is properly ventilated. Have all moisture-producing appliances (stoves, laundry room, kitchen, and bathroom) vented to the outside. Investing in a good dehumidifier and running the AC units while cooking or doing laundry will also help keep the house dry. Don’t forget to open the windows to allow fresh air in. Don’t neglect the dehumidifier and indoor AC units either; they could be holding moisture too.
4. Invest In Mold-Resistant Products
Consider using mold-resistant products the next time you renovate your home or if planning to build a new one. These include mold-resistant sheetrock, mold-resistant drywall, and mold inhibitors for paint. It would be best to avoid traditional drywall for it contains materials (paper) that promote dampness. Mold-resistant drywall contains fiberglass instead of piles of paper, hence more resistant to wetness. You can, therefore, use this drywall in the basement, laundry room, bathrooms, kitchens, and other moisture-prone areas. You could also use the mold-resistant gypsum board to reduce the risk of mold growth in traditional drywall as well.
5. Keep An Eye On Indoor Moisture Levels
According to the EPA, indoor humidity levels should be kept between 30 and 60%. Anything higher than that leads to condensation and a potential mold problem. Keeping an eye on humidity levels (using a hygrometer) is therefore recommended. Condensation on walls, windows, and pipes is the most common sign of excess humidity you should look out for. Be sure to wipe dry the surface, then turn on the dehumidifier to help get rid of the excess moisture. Opening the winds to let fresh air in might also help lower humidity levels as well. Be sure to turn off the humidifier if you see droplets of water on the window panes.
6. Direct Ground Water Away From The House
Groundwater from heavy rainfall may find its way into the basement. Ensuring there’s no standing water next to the house, and directing the water away from the house could reduce the risk of standing water seeping into the basement.
7. Repair and Clean Roof Gutters
A leaky or damaged gutter might be the reason for water leaking into the basement. The same applies to gutters full of leaves, twigs, and debris. Cleaning the gutters and inspecting them for damage can however solve the issue. You should also have the gutters repaired or replaced if the damage is extensive to prevent leaks. Experts also recommend watching out for stained walls after a major storm, as this could indicate a leak.
8. Increase Air Circulation In The House
Letting fresh air in is one of the best ways to control mold infestation. Mold thrives well in stale and dark spaces. While the air conditioner might come in handy, merely opening all windows, doors, and other inlets allows fresh air inside. This is particularly recommended if you start to experience a drop in overall temperature. This is because colder air releases the excess moisture which might contribute to moisture appearing on windows, floors, and walls. Improving air circulation prevents this from happening as the temperatures drop farther.
9. Prevent Mold Growth On Household Plants
Household plants not only add life to your home but also help purify the air. As much as we love these plants, they too can harbor mold. The moist soil creates a perfect environment for mold growth, which could spread to other areas of the house. Preventing mold growth on these plants is one of the best ways to tackle this. All you need to do id a few drops of Taheebo tea in the water you use to irrigate these plants. Taheebo tea contains oils that fight fungi and other microbes hence should help prevent mold growth.
Take some time to learn about your regions type of climate and how it responds to moisture. Doing this will help you understand various ways to deal with excess moisture, as well as identify better ways to fight mold infestation.