Got Mold? How To Get Rid of It Now and Avoid It Later
Whenever you see mold, a form of fungi, in your home, it indicates you’ve got a moisture problem that could be isolated in one area, or throughout, especially in the basement or the attic. This fungi feeds on dead organic matter and left to grow unchecked, will eventually erode many of the products from which your home is constructed.
It can also affect your health, causing allergic reactions that show up as respiratory or skin problems. One form of mold, the Stachybotrys chartarum, can cause serious health problems. When it’s wet, it’s dark green and black and somewhat slimy. It should only be handled by someone with the certifications to dispose of it.
How to Get Rid of Mold Now and Avoid It Later
- Use ultraviolet (UV) lights in your home’s ductwork. UV lights eliminate the spores because they change the DNA, making it impossible for the spores to reproduce. These lights also help eliminate airborne viruses and bacteria in the same way. Your HVAC contractor can help you install them.
- Monitor your plumbing, especially under sinks. Leaky pipes are a constant source of moisture.
- Beef up the insulation in the attic and seal any air leaks between the attic and the ceilings to prevent warm air from entering the attic. The warm air causes condensation, creating a source of moisture. Mold on insulation degrades it and it will not have the same thermal resistance. Eventually, you’ll have to replace it.
- Remove obvious growths around your home with a detergent or vinegar and water solution. Likely places to look are the gaskets around refrigerators and freezers, around sinks, basements, tubs and showers.
- Keep your home’s humidity levels between 30 and 50 percent year-round. It’s the ideal level for you and your home’s health.
- Deal with serious water or flood damage, by contacting a contractor who specializes in home restoration. They have powerful equipment that will remove the excess water to lessen the damage, which can ruin your carpets, floors and walls.
For more information about controlling mold in your home, contact HVAC & Plumbing Unlimited Heating & Air Conditioning. We provide HVAC services for homeowners in the Alexandria and Fairfax area.
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