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Mold: Winter’s Unexpected Challenge

 

imagesSome may think that because the weather is now colder and the heat in our homes is running, mold is not an issue. On the contrary, mold can be more prevalent this time of year. Although heating our homes may cause the air to be drier in most areas, some places may have higher levels of humidity because of reduced ventilation. Small bathrooms — steamy from showers — and kitchens — full of steam from cooking and running dishwashers — are two especially vulnerable areas.

Recognizing that wintertime can be a heightened season for mold growth is the first line of defense.  The second is being observant and watching for mold growth. Here are a few things to track:

Manage Moisture

Keep an eye out for condensation or peeling paint on window sills as this can be an indication of a moisture problem. Check under sinks, around shower stalls, and bathtub area for leaks or standing water. Dry wet areas immediately, and repair plumbing, window or roof leaks as soon as possible.

Maximize Air Flow 

If possible, improve the ventilation in your home. Cold weather isn’t compatible with opening doors and windows to the outside, but opening doors between rooms — even closet doors  — can improve ventilation. Moving furniture slightly away from walls will also help.

Monitor Humidity Levels

Keep check on your homes humidity level by using a moisture meter that can be purchased at your local hardware store. It is recommended that your home’s humidity level stays between 30 and 60 percent.

Eliminate Mold 

If you discover mold in your home and plan to remove it yourself, wear a good quality allergy mask, goggles and gloves. If you are sensitive to mold, have someone else clean up the affected area. Use a mold remover and disinfectant rather than bleach to ensure the mold is killed. You may also want to consider using a mold sealant that when sprayed on surfaces can prevent the growth of mold up to two to four years.

Even if no one in your home has a mold allergy, you can still suffer the effects of being exposed to mold. They can be as minor as eye irritation, coughing, and headaches or as serious as nausea, vomiting, and respiratory problems. So, its important to be aware of areas where mold can grow so your family can have a safer and healthier wintertime environment.

Have more questions? Call us – we’d love to help! Call the professionals at Go Green Plumbing at 336-252-2999 for service 7 days a week/24 hours a day.  If water runs through it – We Do It!