Most homeowners will cringe at the mention of mold in their home. Mold and mildew are fungi that can grow anywhere there is moisture. Though mold is necessary for breaking down organic materials outside, it can cause serious health issues when you or your family are living with mold in your home. Not only can mold be hazardous to your health, but it can also be hard to get rid of once it starts to infiltrate your home. The best defense against mold is taking preventative measures to keep in from growing in your home.
How to Prevent Mold in Your Home
Mold can become difficult and expensive to remove, but you don’t have to succumb to this health threat. Instead, you can take steps to prevent mold growth. Here are just a few ways that you can prevent mold from growing in your home:
1. Control your indoor climate.
Though it may be tempting to crank up your AC on hotter days, it’s important that you maintain a mild temperature so that you can dehumidify your air effectively and prevent cold surfaces where water vapor may appear. Setting your thermostat to 78 degrees Fahrenheit helps you maintain energy efficiency while preventing moisture buildup. When you leave your house or go on vacation, don’t set your thermostat above 80 degrees or turn it off completely, this can raise the temperature and humidity levels, putting you at risk for mold.
2. Reduce the amount of clutter in your home.
Clutter in your home can block airflow and keep your HVAC system from properly circulating air throughout your home. Reduce clutter and keep furniture and draperies away from vents and grilles as they can cause condensation, which is the perfect home for mold. On humid days, you can use your ceiling fans to help keep the air circulating throughout your home.
3. Monitor humidity levels.
Humidity creates moisture, which is a breeding ground for mold. Make sure that you monitor humidity levels using an indoor humidity monitor or your thermostat if it has that capability. The ideal humidity percentage is between 35 and 50%. If your humidity reaches over 60%, you need to find the source of added moisture before you run into mold issues. When it’s over 70%, some mold species can begin to grow.
4. Use a dehumidifier.
If you find that your humidity levels are too high, you can use a dehumidifier to remove excess moisture from the air. These devices are available as a stand-alone unit, which is ideal for occasional dampness, or as a whole house dehumidifier, which attaches to your HVAC system to reduce moisture throughout your home year-round.
5. Close windows and doors when your air conditioning is on.
When you open doors or windows, you are allowing humid air to enter the home, not to mention wasting energy by letting cool air escape. When humid air enters your home, it can cause condensation, which promotes mold growth.
Have you found mold in your home? This could be a sign that your HVAC system is not working properly. Call us right away so that we can help you correct the problem before mold takes over.