Mold and Your Home
Mold is an insidious and vicious substance that can cause problems to your home, your wallet and, more importantly, your health. Although mold is easy to clean on the surface, the threat of lingering mold makes even small incidents of recurring mold a reason to contact a professional mold removal expert immediately.
How Can I Prevent Mold?
While mold can technically grow anywhere, it grows best in areas that are humid. Ensuring that your home is properly ventilated and that any instances of mold is taken care of quickly so it doesn’t spread is incredibly important. There are a number of precautions you can take when trying to prevent mold from growing, such as:
Lower In-Home Humidity
Humidity in the home should be between 30% and 60% if at all possible. Dehumidifiers can help to lower humidity levels if your home is too wet. High in-house humidity can prolong the amount of time it takes for surfaces to dry fully, making it easier for mold to grow and harder to get rid of it permanently. Proper ventilation can prevent moisture from collecting in one location.
Wipe Down Wet Surfaces
Make sure you wipe down any surface that is frequently damp and could cause mold to build up over time. This may include glass shower doors and mirrors after your shower or bath is used, laundry rooms, basements, and kitchens. Anywhere that collects moisture is at risk.
If you notice standing water in locations like basements or corners of rooms — or moisture collects and doesn’t dissipate from areas like carpets — a mold infestation is almost assuredly imminent. Finding and stopping the source of the water now could save you some expensive repair bills in the future.
Ventilation can help areas of your house — especially areas that may be prone to standing water like basements — to dry more quickly than they would normally. This can be as easy as remembering to leave doors and windows open to increase airflow or as extreme as installing ventilation systems if ventilation is especially problematic.
Periodically Clean Your Air Vents
Air ducts can be a great place for mold to hang out, and since they’re out of sight, it can be easy to forget to clean them. Because mold can cause allergenic effects in the short-term and problems like anxiety, depression, and insomnia in the long-term, remembering to clean out air vents properly is a great step to preventing problematic mold infections in your home.
How Can I Remove Mold From My Home Completely?
Simply put, you can’t. Spots of mold that you can see actually make up a colony, a collection of hundreds or thousands of different mold spores. Mold is incredibly common and is mostly harmless in small doses, but becomes most harmful when given the opportunity to grow to visible levels. You can, however, bring levels of mold down to more-or-less negligible levels and rid your home of harmful mold colonies if you properly treat it.
If you notice a mold infection in your home, there are a couple of different strategies you can take to address it:
DIY Home Mold Removal
While we always recommend going with the professionals, it’s entirely possible to attempt to get rid of mold on your own in minor cases of mold infestations. Plenty of products exist that can help kill mold infestations and repel future ones, although be very careful about the product you invest in; many are not worth the money they charge. Vinegar is actually one of the best household ingredients for killing mold because of how well it can penetrate porous substances like wood and drywall, while bleach only kills mold on the surface and, as such, is the inferior option.
Again, DIY mold removal treatment is not recommended, as there’s a good chance that you won’t have cleaned up everything that’s there. Get ahold of a professional so you can rest easy.
Replace Damaged Drywall
While DIY drywall mold removal is doable, it’s generally a better idea to replace any damaged drywall entirely. Since many types of drywall are incredibly porous, there’s a distinct possibility that even multiple deep-cleaning treatments won’t kill all of the mold infestations and it will just regrow shortly. Replacing the drywall is also a good opportunity to assess any potential structural damage if mold keeps reappearing in the same spot.
Get Your Home Tested for Mold If You Fear Infrastructure Damage
As mentioned above, if one area of your house in particular is more prone to mold than the others, it may be a good idea to make sure that the mold hasn’t penetrated the infrastructure of your home. In extreme cases, mold can compromise the integrity of floors, ceilings, and walls to the point that it’s possible that they could collapse entirely if left untreated.
If All Else Fails, Contact the Professionals
While this should always be your first step, sometimes the mold is bad enough that you don’t have time to wait until payday for yet another bill, and a DIY treatment is a last-ditch effort to avoid one. Unfortunately, sometimes there’s no other option. Recurring mold in a specific area and difficult mold that just won’t go away are Bio-One of Tucson’s specialties. If you need professional mold removal help in Tucson or the surrounding areas, please visit our Mold Remediation page for more information on our services or to request our help today!