Control Mold Growth by Understanding Humidity’s Effect
Though mold is essential to the function of our natural environment, it’s not often welcome inside a home. In addition to being unsightly, mold can endanger the health of those exposed to it. To control mold, it’s vital to understand the role of moisture in mold growth, what can to give mold the chance to establish itself in your home, and what to do to stop it.
The air in our homes contains moisture in the form of water, most often referred to as humidity. The relative humidity of an indoor space is a measure of how much water is in the air. At 100 percent relative humidity, the air is completely saturated and cannot absorb any more moisture.
When relative humidity is at 100 percent, condensation forms on walls, windows and other surfaces. This condensation, along with other moisture, is a prime component of mold growth. If there’s a food source, proper temperatures and mold spores, mold will establish itself in this environment and thrive.
To help control mold, you should take steps to reduce the relative humidity inside your home.
- Install a whole-house dehumidifier to remove moisture from your indoor air. Keeping your home’s spaces at a relative humidity below 60 percent in the summer and 40 percent in the winter will help limit mold growth.
- Keep indoor environments dry. Run ventilating fans in the kitchen and bathroom to remove moist air. Wipe down bathroom walls, shower stalls and other surfaces to remove moisture. Find and fix any water leaks in your plumbing or drainage system.
- Don’t ignore spills. Clean up spills quickly. If your carpets get wet, either set up fans to blow on them to speed drying or rent an extractor to remove moisture. Flooded indoor areas and wet belongings are very likely to develop mold.
For more information on how to control mold and reduce the effects of humidity and moisture in your home, contact us today at Sobieski Services. Our goal is to help educate our customers in Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland and New Jersey about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC & plumbing systems).
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