When a new home is purchased or built, there are many things that can be done to make certain it provides a healthy environment. Mold prevention is considered a top priority with homeowners. Mold is considered a contaminant that is harmful to a person’s respiratory system. Toxic spores breathed in for an extended period of time can be fatal. There are certain things a homeowner can do to prevent mold from developing in their house.
The moisture levels in a home can be significantly reduced when an effective exhaust fan is used in the bathroom. It should be running before and after a shower is used. A bathroom is a moist place where mold can easily develop. Exhaust fans are designed to decrease amounts of bathroom moisture.
It is important to make certain that a home’s plumbing does not have any leaks. Preventing seepage can stop the growth of mold. When a home’s plumbing is free of leaks, mold will not be able to develop.
Installation of a proper dehumidifier for the size of the house to control the moisture levels is imperative. An old home or a new one can benefit from having a dehumidifier. They can be attached to a home’s furnace and treat all the air in a house. It can also be connected to a drain, so its tank will not need to be emptied by hand. If the house is in a location that is extremely humid, a whole-house system could be a homeowner’s best option.
When a home is being built, the ground should be sloped away from the home’s foundation. This will prevent water from getting into or collecting around the foundation. When water is not able to collect in a foundation, the development of mold can be avoided.
Proper drainage systems on the inside and outside of the home. We highly recommend the installation of “dimple board” to the outside foundation walls prior to back-filling of the foundation. This provides a water-proof barrier of those outer walls. A French drain system on the inside and outside around the foundation’s perimeter is also very important.
It is important for homeowner’s to vent their appliances that produce moisture. This includes stoves, clothes drivers, certain types of heaters and more. The vents need to be regularly checked for mold and cleaned. Also, keep an eye on your refrigerator if it has an ice maker. They can leak and cause issues in the floor boards and wall behind the unit if left undetected.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) advises people maintain a humidity level in their home between 30 and 60 percent. Moisture in a home can be measured by using a moisture meter. This is something that can be purchased at a local hardware store. A sign of excessive humidity is condensation on walls, pipes and windows. A moisture meter will help the homeowner know there is a problem. They can then locate it, and correct any issues.
An important way to help mold prevention is by having good air flow inside a house. When a home has good air flow, it will stop excess moisture from forming on walls, windows and more. A homeowner can improve airflow by keeping doors open between rooms and keeping closets slightly open.
Calculate the amount of roof square footage you have to determine the correct size gutter and down spouts for your house. Don’t rely on the builder for this. Have a professional gutter company review the plans of the home to determine the correct sizes you need. A minimum of six foot extensions for your down spouts is recommended.
Mold Proof Coatings
Apply mold-proof coatings on potential surfaces for mold growth (i.e.: plywood and supports, framing, basement block walls). Area must be dry and no moisture issue present for this to be effective.
Insulation and Ventilation
Ensure your builder or contractor is following all insulation and ventilation codes for your area. Call your local town code enforcement office for this information.
This is a flooring that has been treated with a chemical densifier. It inhibits mold growth. Polished concrete also decreases the chance for allergen and dust mite issues to develop.
Floor preparation for mold prevention can be accomplished by treating it with a Borax solution. Other floor preparation will require keeping flooring and subflooring free of moisture. Once mold is detected carpets and other items must be removed immediately. You may want to have a professional do this for you so that there is no cross-contamination.
Doing these preventive measures can save you a lot of money and potential health issues, not to mention headaches in resolving unnecessary problems with your brand new home. Your best interests for you and your family should always be the top priority.