How To Protect Your Home From Mold and Mildew

stock-photo-3164773-executive-home-bar-and-entertainment-roomIf you have a wet basement, the possibility of mold and mildew is pretty high.   Mold can damage your carpets, walls, and ceiling tiles. The repercussions of mold can be financially hard, and can be very damaging to your health.  Keeping a dry basement is not only smart for your wallet but to ensure a healthy living. Respiratory problems, skin irritation, sore throat and cough are some of the most common health problems associated with mold. Taking the problem seriously can ensure the health of you and your family. Follow the links below for more information about this topic. 

Be proactive when dealing with mold and mildew

Mold – it’s not a fun subject, but it’s a serious one – even in the summertime. Flash flooding from summer storms can cause standing water around buildings. Flooding and leaks are the leading causes of mold in homes, and recent studies show that approximately 50 percent of all homes have been affected with moisture problems leading to mold issues.

Without a doubt, the best strategy is prevention. Left untreated, mold infestation remediation can be as cumbersome and costly as a complete home renovation.

Mold can irritate the eyes, the skin, the throat, nose and lungs. Immune-compromised people and people with chronic lung conditions may get serious infections in their lungs when they are exposed to mold. It can also damage and stain walls, roofs, carpets and flooring, costing homeowners both time and money.

How to Stop Mold or Mildew

Regardless of how experienced you are at gardening, if you’ve grown plants, you’ve seen that feared appearance of white, fuzzy splotches on your beautiful plants; the zombie horde of death-devouring mold and mildew that slips onto your garden like a tangible fog.  You close the door and turn out the light, only to find one or more plants have gained a fur-coat of mold overnight.  But just what is it, and how can you fight back?  First, find out what’s growing on your plants.  Is it mold, mildew, or some other type of fungus?  The most typical type of fungus you’ll find is a white, powder-like substance colloquially known aspowdery mildew.  We’ll address how to treat this specific case, but many of these techniques will work so long as you’re facing a similar type of mold or mildew.

A word of Caution regarding fungus and mold:

You should always wear gloves and a mask while dealing with mold, mildew and fungus.  Most of the time they aren’t harmful, but several strains can be dangerous and harmful if inhaled.  Mold spores can also adhere to skin and clothing; wearing a mask and disposable gloves mitigates the spread and inhalation of harmful spores.

Mildew and Mold

The high humidity of an East Coast summer, combined with winter weather conditions, can make homeowners fall victim to household mildew.

“A large snowfall prevents the ground from freezing deeply, or a mild winter can fail to freeze the ground, allowing for easy water penetration,” says Phyllis Adams, associate professor of agricultural and extension education at Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences. “Any rain or melting snow, followed by a humid summer gives you perfect conditions for mold and mildew growth.”

Adams says the causes of most mildew problems are not difficult to understand or to solve. “Air can absorb moisture. It’s like a sponge,” she says. “Warm air can hold more water vapor than cold air. When the temperature of the air drops, its ability to hold moisture is lessened until the air reaches the dew point. Droplets of water will form on any surface that is at or colder than the dew point of the surrounding air.”

Warm, moist air within a house is attracted to all cold surfaces, including windows, mirrors, the corners of basements, exterior corners of a room and inside closets. The buildup of condensation creates the perfect environment for mold spores to thrive.

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