Mold in your home is not only ugly, it’s also dangerous to you and your family’s health. Black mold, in particular, can cause coughing, headaches, and even chronic fatigue. Professional mold removal is expensive. According to HomeGuide, professional removal costs anywhere between $15 and $31 per square foot. Depending on the areas being treated, you may have to leave your home during treatment. When it comes to mold, it’s best to prevent growth in the first place. Mold can grow just about anywhere, but it thrives in damp, dark areas. Anywhere there’s water leakage, high humidity, or condensation is susceptible to mold growth. It is often found growing in attics, crawl spaces, and under sinks, all places that may be “out of sight” and receive little foot traffic. Luckily, there are steps homeowners can take to prevent mold growth.
1. Frequently Inspect Plumbing Fixtures
Leaks under your bathroom and kitchen sinks can easily go unnoticed. Periodically check for and repair any leaks before mold gets a chance to grow. Pull your dishwasher and washing machine away from the wall and make sure all the pipes and tubing are leak-free. Also inspect the walls behind and adjacent to any other appliances that use water, such as a refrigerator with a built-in ice maker. Call a professional plumbing service and explain your concerns to a plumber, even HVAC pros can discover leaks. In addition, there are companies that specialize in leak and mold detection.
2. Ventilate Your Kitchen
Cooking often creates a humid environment in your kitchen. Run your kitchen’s exhaust fan during and after cooking. If your home doesn’t have a built-in fan, open the nearest window.
3. Get Rid of Bathroom & Kitchen Rugs
Rugs add an aesthetic appeal to your home, but in potentially damp areas they are also a breeding ground for mold. Once wet, rugs may stay damp for quite a while and never have the chance to fully dry. Mold can grow both on the rugs themselves and on the floor under the rugs.
4. Ventilate Your Bathroom
Who doesn’t love starting their day with a hot shower? Unfortunately, steam leads to moisture on your walls. If your bathroom has a window, leave it open as much as possible. Run your bathroom fan during showers and baths. Consider installing a door frame fan to circulate air in and out of the bathroom.
5. Avoid Air Drying Clothes in Small Rooms
Air drying your laundry is good for your clothes and the environment. Unfortunately, it’s also good for mold growth! Many people hang wet laundry on their shower curtain rod, but the last thing you want to do is add more humidity to your bathroom. When possible, hang wet laundry outside to dry. If clothes must dry indoors, choose larger rooms. Run the ceiling fan or turn on an oscillating fan. Despite taking proper precautions, mold can still occur. In most cases, it’s best to leave mold removal up to professionals. Improper removal techniques can cause the mold to spread and make you and your family sick. There may also be mold you can’t easily see, like inside drywall. It’s best to let a professional company test for and treat any mold growth in your home.