When mold growth gets out of the hand, the consequences can affect your peace of mind, your family’s health, and even the value of your property. The microscopic nature of mold spores means mold is highly opportunistic. It uses every means available, without apology, to grow and spread throughout your home or business.
If mold has already taken hold, your options are limited to DIY removal or calling in the pros. But even after you remove the mold, you’re left with the question of where the problem actually started, and how the underlying conditions that cause mold be dealt with quickly and effectively.
Let’s break down four of the most common mold problems and solutions. They just might help you to stop mold from becoming a serious, expensive problem in years to come.
Problem #1: The Air is Too Humid
Theoretically speaking, mold problems are less of a problem in desert climates. Why? Because mold needs moisture and humidity to thrive. A humid, shady, dark environment with plenty of porous surfaces is a dream come true for mold. Unfortunately, many modern homes (no matter what the outdoor climate may be) provide exactly this type of environment. Warmth and steam pours from hot showers and stovetops, while inadequate ventilation increases mold’s ability to grow. In short, the air in our homes is too stagnant and humid.
Solution: Keep the air moving through your home with proper ventilation, either by using fans and open windows, or by installing a good quality ventilator. Dehumidifiers and high quality A/C units also help to keep your indoor humidity down.
Problem #2: Water is Leaking Inside the Home
Don’t be fooled into thinking that a leaky tap does no harm. Mold takes advantage of any constant source of moisture it can find. Pipes that are leaking inside the walls, even if only slightly, are a very common cause of mold infestations. Any time you have water leaking, mold will follow close behind.
Solution: Keep your home as waterproof as possible. That goes for pipes, roofs, walls, windows, and any other place where moisture could be escaping into the home. When you do discover a leak, it should be addressed immediately and the area should be checked for signs of mold growth.
Problem #3: Your Ducts and HVAC Systems are Dirty
We often assume that our heating and cooling systems, and the ducts they use to deliver warm or cool air into our homes, are able to go on working indefinitely without maintenance. In fact, these systems can become very dirty, reducing ventilation and even spreading mold spores through infested filters. Properly maintained HVAC systems can do much to prevent mold, but improperly maintained systems can actually encourage it.
Solution: Regularly checking and cleaning your HVAC systems (including appliances, filters, ducts and vents) will not only keep mold in check—it will also enhance your heating and cooling performance.
Problem #4: You Hang Things to Dry Inside
Have you ever hung clothes to dry inside on a rainy day, only to find they smell moldy when they actually do dry? This is how fast mold works to colonize a damp area with a porous material. Leaving wet things around the house—especially if you regularly do it in a specific area, such as the utility room—can give mold plenty of moisture to work with.
Solution: Avoid hanging clothes and other wet items inside for long periods of time. If it’s absolutely necessary, keep them hear and open window and use a fan to improve ventilation.
Solving the most common mold problems is actually quite easy. It’s when mold takes hold, and forms an extensive colony, that solutions become more complicated. If you have a mold problem, or want to optimize your home or business for mold prevention, these simple steps will go a long way.
We hope you’ve enjoyed reading, and we’d love to see your questions or comments in the box below!