No one wants to deal with water damage in their home. Worse still, no one wants to deal with mold, resulting from water damage.
Mold can destroy carpeting, furniture, flooring, walls, and other items in your home.
At the same time, it could greatly affect indoor air quality, leading to poor respiratory health in the process.
So now that you’ve suffered water damage, how can you prevent all this from happening?
1. Eliminate Indoor Moisture
Moisture is one of the primary conditions which allow for the growth of mold.
It therefore only makes sense that to prevent the growth of mold, you would have to control indoor moisture.
Doing so involves stopping leaks, drying the wet areas immediately, routing water away from the foundation, and ensuring proper ventilation.
Keep in mind that the worst mold infestations tend to occur in attics and walls where water has leaked in from the outside, in damp crawlspaces, and in basements where there’s poor foundation drainage.
As austin roofing advises, you should always clean and dry the subjected areas within 24-48 hours of the water damage.
In addition to cleaning and drying a particular space, don’t leave wet items lying around the house.
Depending on the extent of the water damage, you might have to remove wet bedding, carpets, drywall, and furniture.
2. Monitor Indoor Humidity
The recommended indoor humidity levels are between 30%-50%.
When humidity is high in your home, this could not only feed mold, but it could also mean that any dump materials and puddles of water in the house will take longer to dry out.
To ensure that your humidity levels are within the recommended range, you could opt to use smart bathroom timers or humidity sensors that can be purchased from a local hardware store.
High humidity can be detected by paying attention to certain potential problem areas. The most visible telltale sign includes condensation on windows, walls, and pipes.
Whenever you notice condensation at a particular point, dry the surface immediately and make sure you address the source of the moisture.
In a bid to keep indoor humidity levels in check, you might also want to squeegee the water off your shower walls after taking a bath.
By doing this, you will help to eliminate at least ¾ of the moisture that supports mold growth.
3. Enhance Air Flow in The Home
Proper ventilation would help eliminate any moisture still present in the house and also keep humidity levels low.
Don’t just ventilate the water damaged room. Pay attention, also to the rooms where there is moisture and steam buildup, like the kitchen and bathroom.
At the most basic level, guaranteeing good air circulation would involve opening windows during the day, as long as it’s not raining outside.
Also, open doors between rooms and open doors to closets as well.
If you need more aggressive air circulation methods, then you could try using exhaust fans, AC units, and dehumidifiers.
When running these appliances, keep an eye on the AC and dehumidifiers to make sure they don’t produce moisture themselves.
Run an exhaust fan when doing the dishes, cooking or showering and make sure the fan is big enough to clear out most of the moisture in the room in about 10 minutes.
Appliances that produce moisture (such as stoves and clothes dryers) should be vented to the outside, not to the attic.
4. Invest in Mold-Resistant Products
As you are removing water-damaged materials from your home, you will find that you may need to replace some items and do some repairs and renovations.
If your drywall has been affected by water, you would need to replace it even if you currently see no signs of mold.
While repairing the water damaged rooms, consider making certain upgrades to help prevent or minimize future mold growth.
For instance, if you have carpeting in a high-moisture room, consider replacing this with linoleum flooring or tiles.
Using mold-resistant paint for the walls in damp areas is another thing you could go for.
Also, consider mold-resistant drywall; that uses fiberglass instead of paper or mold-resistant Sheetrock.
5. Pay Attention to The Exterior of The House
Take a walk outside and check the exterior of your house. How is the ground around your home sloped?
Ideally, the land should be sufficiently sloped away from the foundation.
If this isn’t the case, then groundwater could accumulate around your foundation, causing mold to grow outside before making its way indoors.
As this Wikihow article explains, there is plenty you can do outside, to prevent the growth of mold indoors.
Take measures to drain water away from the building. Either do some landscaping to modify the slope of the ground or dig trenches to channel water away from the house.