How to Prevent Mold in New York
It may not seem like an imminent priority, but mold can go from an eyesore to a health hazard in less than 48 hours. Make sure to take mold spores seriously and address issues quickly. The best cure is to prevent mold from growing in the first place. If you detect mold, make sure to read below for ten easy steps to eliminate mold and keep it out of your home and your fellow residents of New York to do the same.
Advice How to Prevent Mold in New York
- Humidity levels at home should be kept to a minimum of 50% all day. You can keep your humidity levels low by using an air conditioner or dehumidifier. Home improvement stores sell humidity meters that can be used to test your home. You will need to monitor the humidity levels several times per day as the levels of humidity change.
- You must ensure that your home’s air flows freely. In the bathroom and kitchen, install exhaust fans. Make sure that your clothes dryer vents out of your home.
- Make sure to fix any leaks in the plumbing, roof, or walls of your home so that mold doesn’t have moisture.
- After a flood, you should clean up and dry your home quickly (within 24 hours).
- Paints can be treated with mold inhibitors before they are painted. You can purchase mold inhibitors from paint and home improvement shops.
- Use mold-killing agents to clean your bathrooms.
- If carpets or upholstery have become soaked, it is best to replace them. Consider avoiding carpeting in damp areas, such as bathrooms and basements.
Detecting Mold in Your Home
Mold can look like spots. It can appear as spots and come in many colors. Mold should be removed if it is visible or obtrusive. It doesn’t matter what kind of mold it is.
Mold growth in your home should be addressed immediately. Mold can be removed by using household products, soap and water or a bleach solution containing no more than one cup of household laundry bleach per 1 gallon water.
How to Remove Mold in Your Home?
Use Bleach to Remove Mold
- Bleach should never be mixed with ammonia or other household cleaning products. A poisonous gas can be produced by mixing bleach with ammonia or any other cleaning product.
- Follow the manufacturer’s instructions whenever you use bleach or other cleaning products.
- You can let the fresh air in through your windows and doors.
- Rubber boots, rubber gloves, or goggles are recommended for cleaning up affected areas.
- The EPA guide titled Mold Remediation Commercial Buildings provides advice for all building types.
Is Mold a Risk to Your Health?
Molds are rarely a problem indoors unless they get on to a damp or wet spot and start growing. Molds can pose a health risk. Molds can cause allergies (substances that can trigger allergic reactions), irritations, and even toxic substances (mycotoxins).
Allergic reactions may occur when sensitive people touch or inhale mold or mold spores. Hay fever-like symptoms can include sneezing or runny noses, red eyes and skin rash dermatitis.
Mold allergies are quite common. They can occur quickly or they may be delayed. People with asthma can get asthma attacks from molds. Mold exposure can cause irritation to the eyes and skin of both mold species.
Moisture control is key to mold control. Mold must be eliminated from your home as soon as possible. Mold growth can be prevented by drying out water-damaged items within 24 to 48 hours.
How Does Mold Grow?
For mold to begin its life cycle, it needs the following three ingredients: moisture, food sources, and spores. Mold spores can be found in the air at all times. They must be combined with an organic food source (think dirt or dead skin) as well as moisture. You can get moisture from water droplets, humidity or water vapor.
Avoiding moisture is the only way to prevent mold growth. Regular air quality checks and professional monitoring can be taken to prevent mold from invading your home.
Where is Humidity Found?
Humidity refers to the amount water vapor in the air. It is the most common form of moisture found inside homes. For a healthy environment, humidity levels must be maintained in your home.
Mold loves moisture so high humidity levels (above 50%) are necessary for mold to thrive. Low humidity environments can be detrimental to your health. You can blame low humidity levels for sore throats.
There are two options for testing humidity levels: you can either use a hygrometer to test it yourself or call professionals to inspect your home. This includes more than just checking the percentage.
Once you have a clear understanding of the humidity levels within your home, it is possible to take further steps in order to bring it down and prevent mold in your home.
You must remember that humidity levels can be both high or low. Mold can be controlled by controlling the humidity. Also, control low humidity to keep your health in check.
What Causes Humidity
Many factors can lead to humidity.
- Floods or leaks can cause large quantities of water to build up.
- Daily activities like cooking, washing clothes, and showering
- Temperature differences between indoor air and outdoor air can cause condensation.
How to Prevent Mold Growth in New York on Your Walls
Most common causes for mold growth on walls are:
- High humidity
- Water leaks
- Dust, dirt, & poor maintenance
- Inadequate ventilation
- Compromissions in insulation
- Dew point
Condensation happens when water vapor in the air (e.g., from cooking or indoor clothes drying), meets cold surfaces (walls, windows, floors) to cool and become liquid. You can see mold growing on walls that have enough moisture and organic food. Mold can grow from water leaks. Water leakage near or within walls can cause excess moisture.
How to Prevent Mold in New York: 10 Easy Steps
Locate Problem Areas in Your House and Take Action
Mold-proofing your home is impossible, but it can be made mold-resistant. Make a home audit. Where are the problems? Is your basement flooding? Is there condensation at the upstairs windows?
Are you seeing a water stains on the ceiling as a result of a persistent leaky roof? You can remove the carpet from a damp basement to stop mold growth. You might need to waterproof the area and do major excavation.
It doesn’t matter what case it may be, you need to solve the problem right away. Although it might be costly upfront, mold will continue to grow unchecked and lead to more expensive problems down the line.
Address Wet Areas Immediately
Mold can’t grow if there isn’t enough moisture. So get rid of any areas that are wet immediately. Basement flooding, water accumulation due to a leaky pipe and carpet spillages should all be addressed within 24 to 48 hours.
If your carpets and furniture are damaged from flooding, it is important to remove the bedding, carpets, and furniture. Even common events need to be addressed: Don’t leave any wet items around the house and dry the floor and walls immediately after you have finished showering.
Avoid putting wet clothes in the wash machine as they can easily spread mold. Hang them to dry — preferably outside or in areas that have good air circulation.
Create Proper Ventilation
You might be encouraging mold growth by doing routine domestic tasks. You can prevent simple tasks like cooking, washing dishes, and taking a shower from inviting mold growth by ensuring that your bathroom, kitchen, and laundry rooms are properly ventilated.
Ventilate moisture-producing appliances, like clothes dryers or stoves, outside. Dehumidifiers or AC units are a good option, especially in humid climates. But make sure they don’t produce any moisture.
Check them regularly and clean them according to the manufacturer’s instructions. You may have moisture in your energy-efficient house. Open a window for cooking, washing dishes, or showering.
Purchase Mold-Resistant Products
Do you want to build a new home? Use mold-resistant products, such as mold resistant drywall or mold resistant Sheetrock, and paint inhibitors. Traditional drywall is composed a gypsum plaster base that is pressed between sheets of paper. Mold-resistant drywall is paperless.
The gypsum plaster core is pressed between layers of paper. The most valuable areas for moisture-resistant drywall are those that are susceptible to wetness such as basements, bathrooms, laundry rooms, basements and kitchens.
Traditional drywall is more prone to mold than paperless, and it can be costly to remove and replace. You can also purchase mold-resistant Gypsum Board. The drywall’s core is designed to keep moisture out and prevent mold growth.
Monitor the Indoor Humidity
Another simple way how to prevent mold in New York is to regulate humidity. The EPA recommends that indoor humidity be maintained between 30 and 60%. You can use a humidity meter from your hardware store to measure humidity. You can also detect high humidity in your home by simply looking for potential problems.
You can see signs of excessive humidity in pipes, windows, and walls. If condensation is visible, you should immediately dry the area and deal with the source.
Direct Water Away from Your Home
The ground surrounding your home may not be sloped enough to the foundation. Water could collect and seep into your crawlspace, basement, or other areas.
Repair and Clean Roof Gutters
Problems with mold could simply be due to a leaky roof, or gutters that are not working properly. Regularly inspect your roof gutters for damage and make sure they are cleaned and repair as necessary. Keep an eye out after storms for water stains that could indicate a potential leak.
Improve Airflow in Your Home
According to the EPA’s data, air becomes less able to retain moisture when temperatures drop. Lack of good air circulation in your home can cause excess moisture to build up on your walls, windows, and floors.
You can increase circulation by opening doors between rooms and moving furniture away from walls.
Also, you can open doors to closets which may be colder that the rooms they are in. Fresh air can be allowed in to help reduce moisture and prevent mold growth.
Keep Mold off Household Plants
They’re beautiful, and they help keep your indoor air fresh. Mold can thrive in moist soil, and this could spread to other areas of your home. Try adding some Taheebo tea or honey to the water you give your houseplants.
The oil from this tree is strong enough to resist fungi in rain forests and helps prevent mold growth in soil. It can also be purchased at natural food shops.
Find a New York Air Quality Consultant
A final suggestion on how to prevent mold in New York is to consider calling an indoor air quality consultant. These professionals can help you locate a moisture problem and establish corrective action. Check for certifications from respected industry organizations such as the American Society of Home Inspectors and the Indoor Air Quality Association. The average house call costs three hundred dollars or more.