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Basic Steps to Prevent Mold Growth in Your Home

One of the most effective methods for controlling the level of moisture or humidity in your home is through efficient use of its HVAC system. Keeping the thermostat at a consistent, comfortable setting on warm days (even when you are away or on vacation) allows the unit to recycle the air more frequently and helps dehumidify the home.

Keeping a home too hot during cold weather may cause moisture in the Photo of mold.warm air inside to condense when it hits cold windows and exterior walls.

Here are some other steps to take to prevent mold:

  • In the kitchen & bathroom, open a window or utilize outside-vented exhaust fans to help remove the excessive moisture that can result from cooking & showering.
  • Be sure your clothes dryer is vented outside, not inside or to the attic or crawl space. Clean the lint collector regularly as lint buildup inhibits venting.
  • Annually inspect your home's interior and exterior for caulking that may have cracked or separated. Pay particular attention to the windows & door frames, tubs & showers, plumbing fixtures, vinyl floor edging & cabinet tops at back splashes.
  • Don't put plants too close to your home. Watering them can cause moisture to collect along the foundation. Make sure the spray from lawn sprinklers doesn't hit the house and run to the foundation.
  • Regularly clean gutters and downspouts of debris to ensure that they will work properly. Make sure the ground around your home is properly graded so the water runs away from the house.
  • Clean refrigerator and drip coils regularly, according to the manufacturer's instructions and ensure refrigerator & freezer door seals are tight to prevent build-up of moisture.
  • Vacuum & clean regularly to remove potential sources of mold, paying particular attention to bathrooms or areas that are likely to generate lots of moisture.
  • Regularly check the air conditioner's condensation line to ensure it's not blocked, causing excess water to collect in the drip pan & overflow. Clean or replace the filter once a month.

Source: America's Home Place Newsletter