Mold and mildew prevention is one of the most important ways you can ensure your family is breathing in clean air inside of your home. As we know, mold can kick-start allergies and cause a number of other complications when inhaled, so it’s important to nip it in the bud before it starts to become an issue. Being aware of where to look and how to stop growth in potential problem areas is a key skill you’ll need to hone to protect your indoor air quality.
First and foremost, mold can’t exist unless there is a source of moisture for it to develop, so seek out areas that may be moist or humid and dry them up. Basements are an extremely popular area for this to occur due to cracked or defective mortar – water can seep in and create the perfect environment for mold to call home. Make sure to repair any cracks or holes you may find and check to see that the outside drainage is in working shape.
Ventilation is essential. Virtually anywhere in your home could become moist or humid due to a number of activities, like showering and cooking, and having proper ventilation will help level out the moisture and humidity in those areas. When cooking, try to keep lids on pots so the steam doesn’t seep out. If you’re taking a shower, either turn on the bathroom’s ventilation system or crack a window to keep the air balanced. Also try leaving doors in rooms open to improve ventilation throughout the entire home – as long as air is able to flow freely, your chances of optimal ventilation are high.
In the same vein as cracks in your basement’s infrastructure, weather stripping and caulking window and door frames will help keep the outside elements from causing any issues inside of the home.
Your home’s heating and cooling systems can also help keep moisture and humidity levels in check. Electric and gas furnaces produce a dry heat and will combat any moisture in the air, and air conditioning lowers moisture levels as the air cools. Make sure you keep vents open all the way so air can properly ventilate.
A few other things that can help are covering aquariums (the water can evaporate and make the air humid,) storing firewood outside (wood traps moisture and if it’s sitting in your living room can also have an effect on the area,) and making sure the vent to your clothes dryer is ventilating to the outside. Of course, if you feel any humidity, a fail-safe trick is to buy a de-humidifier to suck out any moisture.
Regular inspection of air ventilation systems by a professional is encouraged as they are trained to spot problem areas and any inconsistencies that you may need to address. Alpha Environmental knows exactly what to look for when it comes to handling mold and mildew and will send out an expert to evaluate the situation and advise on next steps if any issues are found. With over 15 years of experience in the Portland area, Alpha Environmental is fully equipped with specialists you can count on.