How to Prevent Mold in the Home
Mold in the home is a dreaded problem for homeowners. A mold infestation makes a home unhealthy by causing allergies, flu-like symptoms, and respiratory issues. On top of that, mold growing on your home’s building materials will deteriorate them and compromise the structural integrity of the house. Make it a top priority to prevent mold in the home with these tips.
Why Does Mold Grow?
A combination of darkness and moisture creates the perfect environment for mold to grow. Once mold grows on a surface, it can spread to other parts of the house when the spores float through the air. If even a small bit of mold is found, it should be cleaned up and removed right away to keep it from spreading throughout your home.
Sources of Moisture in the Home
Water can enter the home from internal or external sources. Leaks in the roof or foundation create moist areas perfect for mold. Because the attic, crawlspace, and basement are not accessed often, leaks in these areas sometimes go undetected. Plumbing leaks are another potential source of mold and are often difficult to detect. Slow leaks in pipes behind walls can cause mold growth in a hidden spot.
Ways to Prevent Mold in the Home
Eliminating moisture is the key to preventing mold. Mold can’t grow and thrive in dry areas. Here are some easy ways to prevent mold from taking hold and spreading.
Use a Dehumidifier
Use a dehumidifier in the basement, crawlspace, attic, bathroom, or any other area with high humidity and condensation. Portable dehumidifiers remove moisture from the air and are good affordable solutions for problem areas.
Turn on Vent Fans
Ventilation fans in the kitchen and bathroom remove warm, moist air from the home. Turn them on every time you shower or cook, and keep them running for at least 10-15 minutes afterward to help clear lower the humidity.
Fix Plumbing Leaks to Prevent Mold in the Home
If you notice any strange signs with your plumbing fixtures, call a professional. A plumber may discover a leak when investigating a seemingly unrelated plumbing issue. There are also signs that surely point to a plumbing leak, like water stains appearing on drywall or discolored areas on the ceiling.
Check the Roof
A leaky roof allows water inside of your home. Keep an eye out for water stains on the ceiling or in the attic. Look for sunlight shining through the roofing boards when you’re in the attic. If you can see daylight, this is a sign that water can also make its way into your home.
Look for Mold in Bathrooms
The most likely place to spot mold is in the bathroom. You may see a dark substance growing on the grout of the bath or shower, or around the sink. At the first sign of mold or mildew, scrub it away with a mold-killing cleaner to control the spread.