Mold or mildew is a type of fungus that will spread its spores whenever it finds moisture. The spores will attach themselves to just about anything and will reproduce faster than you can imagine.
Mold can grow in just about any environment within your home, but you will often find them in the basement. The primary reason why most people will find mold in their basement is that there is access to excess moisture down there.
Moisture from outside the house seeps through the foundation and combines with moisture from within the home to cause high humidity levels in the basement. If there any faulty pipes or water leaks in the basement, you risk a mold infestation.
The good news is that you can prevent mold from accumulating in your basement. The following are easy ways to save your basement from mold:
1. Repair Leaks and Cracks
Leaks and cracks in the basement are among the most significant contributors to moisture accumulation in the basement. If you have any leaks or seeps from cracks in the basement walls, you should repair them immediately if you want to save your basement from mold.
If there are any cracks in the basement walls, you should seal them as soon as possible. Otherwise, you will have to hire a water damage restoration service to fix the constant leak. You can use a sealant such as hydraulic cement to seal the cracks.
The basement walls are not the only source of leaks and seep in your house. If a pipe’s installation is incorrect, the connection will become loose, and the pipes may expand over time, leading to severe water leaks in the basement. It is quite challenging to catch a leak in your plumbing; hence you should regularly check your plumbing for bad connections or leaks and call a plumber if you find one.
Waterproofing the exterior of your home is a fantastic way to prevent the growth of mold in your house, especially inside it. The point of waterproofing is to prevent the excess water on your property from the drain system, the shrubbery, and other areas from seeping into the foundation. Waterproofing will reduce the humidity levels and prevent leakages which promote the growth of mold in your basement.
If you are going to waterproof your house, you should call a local waterproofing expert. Therefore, if you live in Baltimore, you should contact a waterproofing specialist in Baltimore. Ensure that their price is fair, and they offer a guarantee so they can repair the basement if there is ever an issue with the waterproofing.
Waterproofing your basement works best alongside other measures, especially those that prevent water overflow on your property. One of them is cleaning dirt and debris from your gutters to prevent clogging.
The grading of your land is vital because it can direct water towards your basement, increasing the chance of water accumulation. Ensure the grading of your property directs water away from the foundation.
3. Monitor Humidity Levels
Moisture is the most crucial factor contributing to the growth of mold in the basement. When there are no water leaks in your basement, you should focus on the humidity inside your house, which is the primary cause of mold inside the home.
The lack of proper airflow in the basement will be the leading cause of high humidity in the basement. Most basements have no windows, and if they do, they are rarely open; hence there is a lack of sufficient airflow. You can open the basement windows more regularly or use an air ventilator to increase airflow in the basement.
You can also use a dehumidifier to reduce the humidity levels in the basement of your house. Consider the basement’s size and moisture level to find a dehumidifier that will work effectively. If your basement is too large or you have too much humidity, you may need multiple dehumidifiers.
To prevent mold growth in your basement, you should not give them a single chance to grow. The best way to do so is to insulate your home as much as possible, including your walls, basement pipes, and windows.
When there is a significant difference between the air and pipe temperatures, it will lead to condensation hence moisture in the basement. If you notice drops on your basement pipes, you should ensure you change and seal them properly.
You can use pipe sleeves, fiberglass, or other insulating materials to cover the pipes. It would be best to insulate your windows to prevent cold air or water from entering the basement, especially during winter.
It is imperative to insulate your pipes during winter because water can freeze in the pipes, increasing the chance of bursting. The water damage caused by a burst pipe can be extensive and quickly lead to mold growth in the basement.
5. Do Your Laundry Responsible
Most people have their washing machines and dryers in the basement, which dramatically increases the moisture levels in the room. If you do your laundry in the basement, especially drying your clothes, you should ensure that you don’t raise the humidity levels. The best option would be to dry your clothes outside whenever possible.
It would be best to open the windows and doors to the basement whenever you do your laundry. You can also turn on the air ventilator in the basement or use a dehumidifier whenever there are wet clothes in the room.
6. Don’t Overload the Basement
An easy way to prevent mold growth in your basement is to keep it as sparsely populated as possible. The more items you have in your basement, the greater the chances of mold growth.
You should especially keep plants away from the basement. Mold feeds on both moisture and organic content to grow; hence if you have plants in the basement, you will be providing mold with all the food sources it needs.
If you have to keep plants in the basement, you should regularly inspect them to ensure they are mold-free. Applying anti-fungal treatments from time to time should also help immensely.
In conclusion, preventing mold growth in your basement is paramount to avoid severe health complications that mold can cause. If you want to save your basement from mold, the above are easy ways to do so. You can do more, but you will have an excellent chance to prevent mold in your basement if you can use the tips above.