Mold in the home is a far more common thing than people realize. Factually every home, business, park, surgical room or clean room has some mold. Mold spores are everywhere in the air. The real question is how do we keep it from growing and creating elevated levels in one’s home. This is actually very easy when you learn what mold needs to grow from a microscopic spore to a massive black colony you suddenly find in your basement.
To grow mold needs some very specific conditions and if you take away any one of these conditions you have made it so that the mold cannot grow. These conditions are:
- A food source
- Still air
- Relative darkness
Food sources for mold are very hard to limit and control. Any organic material will do just fine for most molds. The some examples are wood used in construction, paper on the drywall, carpet, carpet pads, cabinets, dust and even some glue used between vinyl tiles and the foundation. Due to the presence of natural substances in most construction materials this one is very hard to limit.
Still air is needed for mold spores to settle. As was said there are always spores present in the air but if we never give them a chance to settle down they can never take root. In an unfinished basement keeping all the air moving at all times would work, but isn’t very practical. In a finished area of the house you have the areas inside walls which have air within them that doesn’t move, and this is very hard to get moving without severely damaging your home.
Relative darkness is one that is a little tricky to control because it has to be natural light with UV radiation in it in order to control mold which has to reach every surface. While one could devise a way to handle this it would require a lot more intricate of a system than is actually needed.
Moisture is by far the easiest one to control. Mold either needs moisture in the building materials, like one has after a flood, or a humidity over 55% to grow. By putting a dehumidifier in one’s basement and making sure that the heating, ventilation and air conditioning system keeps the main area of the house below 50% one can prevent mold growth. This extends also to the bathroom where the humidity regularly rises up as high as 100% when one showers, but this can be handled by using the fan in one’s bathroom or by opening a window so it can air out after a shower.
The other factor is that when one does have a leak or flood call Fast Help or another certified water mitigation contractor right away to get the whole structure dried correctly.
By keeping your humidity low and drying out your home when it gets wet you can ensure that you do not get any substantial mold growth in your home.