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Mold Remediation: How to Prevent Mold From Growing in Your Home

4 minute read

As temperatures start to cool, it’s time for homeowners to start thinking about making sure your home is properly sealed for winter. But before you do that, it’s important to check to see if your home is mold-free, or see if you need mold remediation to make sure you’re living in a Healthy Home environment. 

Why Is There Mold in My Home?

According to the CDC, mold growth can exist almost anywhere because where there is moisture, there is the potential for mold growth. Mold spores can enter your home through openings like doors and windows, vents, tiny gaps in your home’s walls, heating systems, and more. Once inside, the mold spores can grow on lots of different surfaces, including clothes, shoes, toys, and even pets. Installing dehumidifiers for mold in your home can help decrease the chances of mold growing in your home.

 There’s a wide variety of different types of molds, and the effects that mold has on your health can depend on your own personal sensitivity. Mold expert Jeff May learned this firsthand. The Johns Hopkins University Press author of three books (‘My House is Killing Me,’ ‘My Office is Killing Me,’ and ‘Mold Survival Guide’) wasn’t always such an accomplished expert on how mold can make you really sick.

“For years, I had an office air conditioner that was probably too big for the space. As a result, my office was always damp and I’d cough whenever the AC came on. Then one day I opened it up and found that everything inside had turned black—with Cladosporium mold. That was the defining moment when I put two and two together,” he said.

 According to May, the first step in preventing mold in your home is to understand what makes it tick. Mold needs three things to grow: moisture, air, and food, and this combination can be found just about anywhere in your home.

 “Mold grows where it can find food: the dust on a bathroom ceiling, the starch paste on the back of wallpaper, or the plant fibers that make up the jute pad under a carpet. Add moisture, and mold growth begins,” said May.

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How to Prevent Mold in Your Home

Mind the Moisture

Balancing your home’s relative humidity levels between 40–60 percent with dehumidifiers for mold is a great way to prevent excess moisture. You can also improve grading and drainage by cleaning gutters and making sure soil is always sloping away from your home to help stop mold growth.

Keep Storage Bins Elevated

Most people nowadays have at least some items stored in plastic bins or cardboard boxes. Keep all your stored items at least several inches off concrete floors and away from your home’s foundation, where dampness can easily seep in. Also, use metal or plastic shelves for storage and try to stay away from wooden shelving.

Heat Your Basement

Below-grade spaces, like finished basements, are more likely to have a buildup of moisture and should always be heated to at least 60 degrees, even when not being used. The warmer the space, the less the chance that condensation will form and create a need for mold remediation.

Filter the Air

One of the best ways to keep mold from growing in your home is with Healthy Air! By installing a whole-house air purifier, you can significantly reduce the proliferation of airborne irritants, allergens, and even viruses—keeping both your family and home healthy all year long.

Make Sure Your Home Is Properly Ventilated

Poor ventilation in damp spaces like bathrooms and kitchens can leave moisture behind, which encourages mold growth. Ensure your bathrooms and kitchens are well-ventilated with fans that move the moisture outside and not up into the attic. You should also keep your bathroom door open after a hot shower to speed up the drying time, or consider installing an AprilAire Fresh Air Ventilation System to decrease the chances of mold growth!

Insulate You Ducts

If you have duct systems in your home that pass through unheated or uncooled spaces like an attic or basement, make sure the ducts are insulated! If not, condensation can form inside the ducts and cause mold growth, which can then be circulated throughout your entire home.

Clean Your Home Carefully

Try to use mold-killing cleaners in your bathrooms and kitchens to stop mold growth at home, and make sure to take apart and clean portable air conditioning units before putting them away for the season. 

Fix Flood Issues Fast

If you experience any flooding or leaks at home, act quickly to stop mold growth before it starts. Make sure to thoroughly dry out soaked carpets and padding and remove any wet upholstery. Use fans to circulate air into the space to speed up the evaporation process, clean any exposed surfaces with disinfectants or sanitizers, and run a dehumidifier for mold to stop mold growth.

Invest in AprilAire

Get in touch with your local AprilAire Healthy Air Professional to discuss what whole-house products will be best for your home! AprilAire offers a wide variety of solutions which includes whole-house humidification and dehumidification solutions, fresh air ventilation, air purification, and more!

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