We spend our days inspecting, testing and removing mold from Raleigh area homes and businesses, but if you follow these tips you can prevent mold before it starts. Of course if everyone followed our advice we could conceivably go out of business, but not everyone is as smart as you.
And, if truth be told, there is a good bit of mold out there right now and if we had to clean it all, we’d be busy for a good long while. We also know that mold can have a serious impact on your overall health and the bottom line is – we want our community to be as healthy as possible. So, we are glad you found us – let’s get started:
6 Tips to Prevent Mold in Your Home or Business
As you read through these tips you are going to notice a theme: mold needs moisture to grow! So, our tips seek to remove and reduce moisture accumulation in your building.
1. Complete Your Own Building Inspection
Since moisture is always the precursor to mold take a good look around your home to see if their are any signs of water intrusion. All you’ll need is a good flash light and a little investigative interest to perform this task.
On the outside of our house, look at the gutters and downspouts, are their any water stains on the wood behind the gutters or near the roof? Check to make sure your crawl space vents are open and that air flow is not blocked by landscaping or other objects. Look at any exposed parts of the foundation and note if there are any damp areas of brick or concrete.
On the inside check ceilings and walls for stains, get up in the attic and take a good look around. If you have a basement look for moisture signs there. If you have an accessible crawl space, inspect it for signs of moisture and mold. If you have a window that often develops condensation, it is worth evaluating that situation as well.
Based on the outcome of your inspection you may have a list of work to be done. Whether you hire a professional or decide to do the work on your own, it is worth paying the price now to address the issues rather than having to perform a costly remediation down the road.
2. Ensure Proper Ventilation
There is always going to be moisture inside your home, your job is to make sure there is proper ventilation to ensure it dries up before mold can get a foothold. Ensure you have proper ventilation in all rooms, especially:
- Laundry room
- Crawl space or basement
Make sure dryer, stove, and bathroom vents are routed outdoors, rather than into an attic or crawlspace.
3. Dry Areas That Get Wet ASAP
If you do have a water intrusion event – whether in your basement, bathroom, kitchen or crawl space, or because of a leak in your roof or water heater failure, it is important that you dry these areas as quickly as possible. According to the EPA you have a 24-48 hour window in which to ensure these items are dried.
In the case of a major water intrusion event, you may wish to contact a company that specializes in drying out carpets, floors and walls.
4. Monitor and Control Humidity
The EPA recommends keeping your indoor humidity between 30%-50%. You can purchase a humidity meter, or ‘hygrometer’ rather cheaply ($10-$50) at local hardware stores or online.
We recommend monitoring your indoor air humidity but it would be especially wise to do so if you often notice condensation on windows, pipes or in other areas of the home.
Air conditioners do help remove humidity, so make sure their drip pans and drains are clean and clear. In cases of especially high humidity you can purchase a de-humidifier to help maintain the humidity in the recommended range.
5. Divert Water from Your Home or Building
Make sure down spouts and the grading/landscaping of gardens and lawns directs the flow of water away from your home or office building. Otherwise, water may seep into your basement or crawl space and cause unwanted mold growth.
6. Use Mold Resistant Products When Building or Remodeling
If you are building new or remodeling existing areas you can use mold resistant products to help discourage mold growth. There are paint products, additives and other surface coating materials that help prevent mold. You can also purchase mold resistant drywall (with fiberglass covering rather than paper) that do provide protection against mold when used according to manufacturer instructions.
You can also visit the EPA’s website to review more tips and information about mold prevention and control.
If You Find Mold Contact Us
If you should find mold while implementing these tips we encourage you to give us a call, even if you aren’t sure. It costs you nothing to know for sure as our estimates are always free.
We have been providing expert mold remediation, sealed crawl spaces, indoor air quality testing, and other environmental services to homeowners, businesses, and Realtors across Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill, RTP, Apex, Cary, Fuquay Varina, Garner, Holly Springs since 2006. We are confident we can help you as well.
You can call us at 919-832-8151 or send us an email using this form.