Winter Mold Can Be a Problem for Many Homes Unless You Take the Necessary Prevention Steps
As the weather outside begins to feel a little cooler, our normal routine begins to change as well. From the clothes we wear to the meals we eat, we do what we can to stay warm and healthy. People also tend to switch from running the air conditioner to running the heater. While turning on the heater may feel like the best way to shield yourself from the cold, it can also cause winter mold growth to occur.
While mold is generally thought to thrive during the warmer months, it is actually fairly common for mold to grow in the winter season too. Because the colder weather tends to change our routine, preventing mold growth during the wintertime might be a little different as well. To keep your home healthy and cozy, follow these tips to prevent winter mold from growing in your home.
Check for Any Potential Leaks and Repairs
Just like any other cause of fungal growth, winter mold grows rapidly when there are leaks or water damage in your home. Before the winter temperatures become too harsh, check your home for any minor roof leaks or rusted pipes that could potentially burst. Being proactive in preventing costly damage or mold growth is the best way to feel confident that your home can handle the freezing elements and winter storms.
If you do find water damage in your home, it is important to call a remediation company like CLEAR Restoration to assess the damage and check for mold growth.
Increase Air Circulation
Taking a hot shower or boiling soup on your stovetop might be good ways to beat the cold, but it also increases the amount of moisture in the room. Because mold thrives in humid environments, your various attempts to warm up could actually cause winter mold to grow.
Use exhaust fans when you cook or shower to increase air circulation and reduce the amount of moisture in a particular area. This will help prevent moisture from seeping through your walls, floors, and ceilings, which could cause fungal growth to happen out of sight.
Reduce the Humidity Levels in Your Home
Increasing air circulation in your home will prevent mold from growing in places where condensation generally occurs. However, to reduce the amount of dampness in your home overall and improve air quality, a dehumidifier is a necessity. A dehumidifier is one of the best ways to avoid making your entire home an ideal environment for mold to grow and spread.
Best of all, because a dehumidifier removes the excess moisture in the air, your home will actually feel drier and warmer in the wintertime. If you want a way to combat the cold weather and winter mold growth, reducing the humidity levels in your home is the best way to go.
Check Your Furnace and Air Ducts Before Turning on the Heat
The easiest way mold spores spread and grow throughout your home is by traveling through your HVAC system. Although your heating and cooling system has been running all year, chances are you have not turned on the heater since last winter. This means that your furnace has been building up dust and allergens for almost an entire year, which is what causes that burning smell when you first turn on the heater.
Before you switch the air from cool to heat, check your furnace filter first for any signs of mold. This is to ensure that you will not be pushing mold spores throughout your vent systems while the heater is on. In addition to checking the filter, also have your air ducts inspected. While you may not have uncovered mold growth during your last inspection, things may be different now. Allowing warm air to circulate throughout your vents will only create a more ideal place for mold to grow. So, before you switch to heat on your thermostat, be sure your furnace and air ducts are properly inspected and cleaned.
As the temperatures continue to drop, remember to get your repairs done and keep your air quality fresh for a healthy home. Be sure to stay warm this winter and call CLEAR Restoration for your winter mold inspection and remediation needs.