It's always important to take precautions to keep mold from growing inside your home, but it's even more important during the winter months when the weather is wet and dreary. The additional moisture in the air during the winter makes it a lot easier for mold growth to begin and expand. So, you should consider following these tips to prevent mold from growing in your house.
Crawl spaces tend to be dark and damp, making them ideal places for mold to grow. It also doesn't help that most crawl spaces have dirt floors, because soil tends to hold moisture. To prevent mold from growing in your crawl space, create a barrier between your house and the crawl space that protects your home from the moisture. To do this, simply cover the soil floor in the crawl space with a moisture-barrier material, such as plastic sheeting that's made from polyethylene or heavy roofing paper. Additionally, if possible keep the vents to your crawl space open throughout the winter. This way, the space doesn't become hot and humid.
Cleaning out your gutters in the fall is important for several different reasons. Not only does cleaning your gutters help prevent ice dams from forming and your gutters from becoming clogged, it helps prevent mold growth. When debris sits in your gutter, rain and snow get the debris wet. The dampness creates the perfect atmosphere for mold growth, and once mold and mildew begin to grow, it doesn't take long for it to spread onto the roof of your house. So don't forget to clean your gutters on a regular basis.
Heating Your Home
Of course, you need to be able to keep your home at a comfortable temperature for you and your family, but you don't want to keep your house too hot. Excess heat encourages mold growth. Keeping the temperature in your house warm, but not hot also has other benefits. The US Department of Energy suggests setting your thermostat to 68 degrees Fahrenheit when you're home and awake in the winter to conserve energy and save money — and setting it even lower when you aren't home or you're asleep. Keeping your home at moderate temperatures like this will also help you keep mold from growing inside your home. So encourage your family to bundle up or use blankets in the winter instead of cranking up the heat.
Humidity also tends to be a problem in the winter, because people typically keep their homes sealed up to keep the cold weather at bay. Unfortunately, sealing up your house for long periods of time can make it more humid. So whenever possible, crack some windows or use a dehumidifier inside your home during the winter months. Consider purchasing a humidity thermometer for your home to monitor the level regularly. Humidity levels during the winter months should not be above 30 percent.
Remember, it's a lot easier to prevent mold from growing inside your home than is it to have it removed. Take the time to prepare your home properly before winter sets in, and if you think that you could have a mold problem, contact a mold remediation company as soon as possible.
For more information concerning your home, contact businesses such as Coastal Environmental Compliance LLC.