Learning how to prevent mold in your home is important for the health of your family and the integrity of your house. Mold affects indoor air quality and can cause allergy-like symptoms including sneezing, itchy eyes, headaches, and coughing. It also damages property and materials, like wood, wallpaper, and carpet.
Once mold appears, it’s difficult to get rid of. Mold spores may grow in many places around the home. These include:
- Behind drywall
- On carpet or carpet padding
- Around leaking pipes
- Basements and attics
- Under sinks
- In damp areas like bathrooms and kitchens
What Can You Do to Prevent Mold in Your Home?
Identify Common Problem Areas
To prevent mold in your home, find any potential problem areas and take steps to correct them. If you have a below-sink pipe that is leaking, a dripping faucet, or a puddle near an appliance, make repairs. Water stains on ceilings and standing water in the basement are more signs of problem areas.
When you notice these circumstances, you might have to:
- Repair the roof or damaged gutters
- Remove carpeting
- Install mold-resistant products
- Waterproof certain areas of the home
If you have water damage, locate the source of the problem before a mold infestation takes hold.
Use Ventilation to Prevent Mold in Your Home
Simple daily activities create an atmosphere that allows mold to grow. Taking a shower, cooking, and washing clothes all introduce moisture into the environment.
Reduce the chances of mold by ventilating your kitchen, bathrooms, and laundry room. Develop a habit of turning on ventilation fans when you are using the stove, taking a shower, or washing clothes. If you live in a humid climate, use dehumidifiers and air conditioning to help reduce moisture in the air. Direct exhaust vents from the stove or dryer to outdoors instead of the attic.
Dry Wet Areas Promptly
One of the best ways to prevent mold in your home is to immediately dry any wet areas. Be aware of the following:
- Carpet spills
- Leaky pipes
- Wet basement floor after a heavy rain
- Leaking appliances
Make it a habit to dry the walls and floor of your bathroom after showering. Don’t leave damp towels lying on the floor. Move wet clothes from the washer to the dryer immediately.
Keep Water Away From Your Home
Keep gutters clean to allow water to flow off the roof and away from your home. Monitor the ground around the house. Make sure there is sufficient slope away from the foundation. Otherwise, water will accumulate in areas like your basement and crawlspace.
Hire a Professional
A mold professional will know what to look for and will test your home for mold.