What’s all the fuss about moldy basements?
This year we celebrate the 12 year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina’s landfall. The death and devastation from that event continues to haunt us all.
But, there were many lessons learned – not the least of which is that mold infestation can make you sick – if not remediated promptly.
And, not just a “little sick,” either.
In his 2009 article discussing “Sick Building Syndrome” Ritt Goldstein says:
“Several studies have provided evidence for the association of cancer in humans with inhalation of aflatoxin contaminated dust, e.g., lung cancer or colon cancer…elevated risks for liver cancer and cancers of biliary tract.”
And, the author has provided a long list of references at the end of his article with links to support this statement (in case you want to research the information on your own)
The research evidence continues to grow linking a LOT of serious health issues and diagnoses to mold exposure. (See our blog on surviving illness caused by mold here)
So the real question is, how can you prevent the growth of health threatening mold, especially in your basement?
Here’s the simple secret to preventing basement mold:
Mold can’t grow without water.
Therefore, preventing water damage and buildup of excess moisture is the key to preventing basement mold growth!
At PuroClean Emergency Recovery Services we’re all about prevention.
And to help you do that, here’s your short list of 9 tips to control water and moisture so that you can prevent mold from growing in the basement of your home or work environment:
1. Keep the humidity levels in check – especially in Summer.
Ideal humidity levels in your basement should be below 45%. To do this, use a dehumidifier. Remember to install the kind that has it’s own pump so that it can drain automatically into a sink or sump pump. That way you won’t have to run downstairs and empty the bucket – or worry about it if you forget.
2. Don’t grow plants inside the basement.
Plants increase humidity levels and provide organic material mold loves.
3. Keep your basement clutter free!
Clutter disrupts the free flow of air in your basement and traps humidity. And this makes it the perfect breeding ground for mold.
4. Use only plastic storage boxes & bins.
The cellulose and glue in cardboard provides the perfect growth medium for mold when it gets damp!
5. Say ‘No’ to wood!
Make sure that you’re not storing wood in your basement or your crawl space. Wood makes an ideal food for mold to grow
6. Use an exhaust fan to vent stale and humid air out and let fresh air in, especially if you have a newer home that is rated for energy efficiency.
Newer energy-efficient homes with finished basements might be easy on the electric bill, but they’re hard on ventilation and air flow. When damp, humid air gets trapped in basements, it fuels mold growth.
7. Insulate water pipes.
Cold water pipes cause condensation. When water collects on the exterior of cold water pipes, it increases the chance mold will grow
8. Use gutter extensions
That way water drains water away from the foundation of the house so storm water won’t flow into your basement.
9. If you do have a flood in your basement – no matter what the source (i.e., burst washing machine supply hoses, burst water heater, over the ground flooding) get it dried quickly!
It won’t dry on its own fast enough!
And, if it’s not dried within 72 hours, bacteria and mold will grow.
If you need help with water damage in order to prevent basement mold growth, don’t wait. Call the experts! 877-750-7876
It’s the best way to prevent illness from mold growth!
See this You Tube video for more information from Settlers Home Inspections.