What is mould?
Mould is a naturally growing fungus that can spread anywhere within your home, including clothes, ceilings, cupboards and furniture. Mould can spread easily as airborne spores and can produce allergens and irritants, making it a risk for those with severe respiratory issues, young children, or elderly people.
Common in the colder months or areas where there is a higher humidity rating, mould loves wet, damp conditions. Either way, finding ways to prevent mould in your home is important to maintain overall air quality and the health of everyone in the home.
What kind of mould can be found in the home?
There are three different kinds of mould that are the most common to found within the home:
This commonly grows on woods, carpets, and clothing and appears green, brown or black in colour. Cladosporium can spread in either warm and humid conditions or wet conditions such as floods and water damage.
Fuzzy, with a blue, green or yellow tinge, this mould commonly grows in wet conditions, under carpet, and even spoiled food. If you see an abundance of Penicillium around the home, you most likely have high and problematic moisture levels in the home.
Green, grey, white with dark spots, Aspergillus is commonly found in bathrooms and window frames, accumulated dust and on plants and can very easily spread via airborne spores.
How to prevent mould in your home?
Because mould naturally thrives in damp conditions, the most effective ways to prevent mould revolve around controlling air quality and moisture levels. Here are some of the more effective ways to prevent mould in the home:
Inviting air flow into your home
Fresh and regular air flow into your home will help keep the moisture levels down and increase air circulation around the home. It’s important to allow for fresh air to circulate around the rooms, wardrobes, walls and ceilings to reduce overall humidity levels and let moisture escape the home.
This can be as simple as opening windows every now and again when the weather permits, or even utilising stand-alone or ceiling fans to promote air circulation.
In areas of the home where mould is most likely to build up, such as the bathroom or kitchen, it’s important to keep areas as dry as possible through ventilation and regular cleaning.
Use exhaust fans and ventilate
The best prevention of mould is to create a steady and consistent amount of air flow around the home to get rid of any stale or stagnant air to prevent moisture build up.
Make sure to regularly ventilate or provide a consistent flow of air around the home. By opening the doors, using ceiling fans, or opening windows, you can allow for fresh air to flow throughout your home to prevent the risk of mould growing.
Installing or actively using ventilation systems throughout your home, especially in the bathroom and kitchen will help prevent mould from spreading around the room and vent out any moisture.
Around the home, the kitchen and bathroom areas are at the most risk of developing mould, so make sure that you open your windows to let any steam out of the areas to help the air escape the room.
Monitor humidity levels with a dehumidifier
For those living in areas with increased humidity levels and are unable to prevent moisture in the air, it is recommended to seek out a dehumidifier to help draw out moisture from the area. These are especially helpful in rooms without access to windows or natural light, or are at a higher risk for mould to spread such as walk in wardrobes, or the basement.
By reducing overall humidity levels in the home, dehumidifiers can make it harder for mould to grow and spread by controlling the overall moisture levels in the air. If you have a larger home, it might be beneficial to have multiple ones around the house in different areas.
It’s important to remember to regularly empty excess water trays to prevent mould from growing in them.
Dry damp clothes
Leaving damp clothes around the home can make for an easy breeding ground for mould, so make sure you begin to dry your clothes immediately after washing. This will prevent mould from spreading on the clothes.
When drying clothes, be sure to hang them either outside or in a drier if you have one. If you can, try to avoid drying clothes inside the house as the water will evaporate and linger around the home, leading to growth on the ceilings and walls. If, however, you need to dry your clothes indoors, make sure that you hang your clothes in a room with a decent amount of air flow or place a fan to assist with air circulation.
Clean spills or floods immediately
It can take as little as a day for mould to accumulate in an area with a high concentration of moisture, so it’s essential to clean, drain or dry areas as soon as possible after a spill or flood. Whether it occurs on floors, carpets, bedding or clothes, make efforts to dry surfaces to prevent mould from growing and spreading.
Without moisture, mould can’t thrive so from little spills to water damage or garage flooding, make sure the moisture is dried up within two days.
Clean carpets regularly
Carpets can carry mould even if it’s not visible to the naked eye. Make sure you vacuum and clean your carpets regularly, to ensure that your carpets are aerated and thoroughly cleaned to stop mould from spreading.
This might mean investing in a professional deep clean every now and again, especially if you can begin to smell a musty odour resonating.
When to Call a Mould Removal Professional?
While there are a number of effective ways to prevent mould from spreading around the home, depending on the humidity conditions and air flow, long term prevention can be tricky.
If you are afraid of mould becoming a problem in your home and are looking for a long-term solution, be sure to call upon a professional team to help you. The MouldMen team will inspect, treat, and provide you with a Mould Management and Prevention Plan to ensure that your home is kept safe and free from mould. Call us on 1300 60 59 60 or click on the link below to book your free inspection today.