Exposure to household mold can result in allergens, toxins, and irritants that can critically compromise your health. Studies have shown that over 50% of homes and 85% of commercial properties contain water damage and mold. Mold forms through the reproduction of spores commonly carried by air currents and can grow on any surface. The fact is, mold grows easily, but there are a few preventative steps you can take to reduce the chances of mold growing in your home.
Courtesy of the Paul Davis experts here are the top five ways to prevent mold growth:
Dry Wet Areas Immediately
We are all guilty of cooking accidents, but leaving your spills unattended could be doing more damage to your home than you think. Be sure to clean up any liquid spills as soon as they happen to prevent your household surfaces from absorbing fluid and becoming a breeding ground for mold. Clean spills on carpet by spreading towels on the damp area and walking over them until they are completely saturated; alternatively, you can use a blow dryer or fan pointed at the direction of the damp area to increase the liquid’s rate of evaporation. If a carpet remains damp after 48 hours, consider removing it from the space so it can completely dry in a well-ventilated area.
Install Proper Ventilation
It’s impossible to completely avoid moisture in areas of the house, such as kitchens, bathroom, and laundry rooms, but installing an effective ventilation system will help. A high-quality ventilation system will help you increase air flow by reducing condensation and purifying the air of pollutants and sources of bacteria. This is especially important for people who suffer from respiratory conditions, such as asthma, because ventilation removes common irritants. Many people don’t use their ventilation systems, so the next time you hop into the shower, don’t forget to turn your vent on to prevent mold issues in the future.
Maintaining an optimal humidity level is critical in preventing unwanted moisture build-up in your home. High levels of moisture can eventually lead to stained ceilings, peeling wallpaper, and other issues, including mold and insect infestations. Paul Davis suggests a humidity level between 30% and 50%, with an ideal level of moisture being around 45%. Test the humidity in your home by purchasing a humidity meter at your local hardware store. If your humidity levels are too high, consider using a dehumidifier and taking steps to improve air circulation in your home or office.
Still don’t know what’s causing your mold issues? Check around the outside of your property. Damaged gutters can cause roof leaks that eventually seep into your home, leading to serious structural damage. Even if your gutters are not physically damaged, it’s important to routinely clean your gutters by removing leaves and debris. Paul Davis suggests cleaning your gutters twice annually, but recommends a more frequent cleaning if your home is situated in a highly-forested area.
Airflow is a critical factor in maintaining optimal air quality in your home. As a room’s temperature decreases, humidity is reduced and air is unable to hold onto the same level of moisture. With increased airflow, you will be able to reduce pockets of hot air in your home and experience the benefits of a stable room temperature. One simple way to increase airflow is to leave windows open and let Mother Nature work her magic. The breeze will help cool your home and provide fresh air that improves circulation. If you cannot leave windows continuously open throughout the day, try opening the windows for at least half an hour before you leave the house and get a burst of fresh air that will be sure to wake you up.
By taking these easy measures into account, you will significantly reduce your home’s chances of developing mold. In the unfortunate event that mold does occur, rely on the experts at Paul Davis to solve your mold concerns in a quick and effective manner. For more information on our mold remediation services, call us toll-free today at 1-800-661-5975, or request help by filling out our online form.