Even the most hospitable folks are unwilling to welcome mold and mildew. While they may be completely natural, these microorganisms are more than undesirable; they’re dangerous to your property and your health. For safety’s sake, you need to know how to keep mold and mildew away.
How to Keep Mold and Mildew Away
When preparing to fend off an invader, it is always wise to understand your enemy. Mold and mildew are both fungi. In fact, mildew is actually a term that is used to describe an early stage of mold. As the Federal Emergency Management Agency explains, these microscopic organisms travel through the air as spores, settling on suitable surfaces and spawning colonies wherever they find suitable conditions. In nature, they help to break down organic materials and renew soils. Indoors, their behavior becomes problematic. When circumstances are right, molds can flourish in as little as 24 hours, so it’s best to be proactive about prevention.
The Dangers of Mold and Mildew
Mold needs moisture, air, and organic material to thrive, and it will cheerfully grow on wood products, dust, wallpaper, paints, ceiling tiles, cardboard, fabric, carpets, drywall, fabric, foods, insulation, and other similar materials. Why does it choose these materials? The mold feeds on them, releasing chemicals that break them down so that they can be digested. In doing so, it destroys the material that it is growing on. Mold spreads quickly, and if left unchecked, it can do a great deal of damage to your possessions and your property. Mold and mildew also create a health hazard. According to the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, the presence of molds can trigger a variety of adverse reactions in humans, including sore throat, congestion, sneezing, wheezing, eye irritation, headache, and skin rash. Individuals who have asthma or compromised immune systems may be particularly vulnerable.
Preventing the Growth of Mold and Mildew
When plotting a strategy for how to keep mold and mildew away, your first line of defense involves controlling moisture. After all, mold cannot grow without moisture. For additional protection, you can utilize antimicrobial products. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offer the following recommendations:
- Fix any leaks promptly. Leaky roofs, windows, and doors can cause water damage and set the stage for mold growth. Whether they cause a slow leak or a sudden, catastrophic flood, plumbing mishaps can also allow moisture to travel into spaces where it doesn’t belong. Mold grows rapidly, so fixing any issue as soon as possible is vital to heading off a mold problem. It is also crucial that the impacted area be fully and immediately dried.
- Be mindful of humidity levels. Mold needs very little water to grow. In many cases, high humidity is all that’s necessary. Using an air conditioner or dehumidifier can help control the humidity in your home. Ideally, the humidity level should be no more than 50 percent. How do you know what the humidity level is? Hygrometers can be purchased at your local home improvement store. Since humidity fluctuates throughout the day, be sure to check the level at various times to get an accurate picture.
- Make ventilation a priority. Ventilation can help control moisture and humidity, so make sure that air flows freely in your home. Keep doors open and use fans to circulate air. If you have a clothes dryer, verify that it vents to the outdoors. It’s also good practice to install and use exhaust fans that vent outside in the kitchen and bathroom. Leave these fans running long enough to clear any lingering moisture before shutting them off.
- Add mold inhibitors when painting. Painting over mold won’t get rid of it, but if you’re planning to repaint surfaces in your home, you can add mold inhibitors to the paint before painting to thwart future growth.
- Use antimicrobial products when cleaning. When an area is particularly vulnerable to mold or is frequented by individuals who are at higher risk of health troubles, it can be helpful to utilize mold-killing products to clean it. For the best results, look for an antimicrobial product that is approved by the Environmental Protection Agency.
If you’re wondering how to keep mold and mildew away, take steps to prevent them with the SafeSpace Disinfectant and Deodorizing Germ Fogger. Extremely effective and EPA-approved, it contains a hospital-grade contact disinfectant that can prevent mold from starting, kill a wide range of nasty germs, and eliminate unpleasant odors. Plus, since it’s a fogger, you’ll never need to worry that you missed a spot. No product can clean away mold for you, but our germ fogger can make your cleaning effort much more effective.
First, thoroughly clean the room, remove existing mold, and fix any moisture problems. Then, as a final step, simply give the fogger can a quick shake, remove the cap, press the trigger, and walk away. Although it doesn’t kill mold, the SafeSpace Disinfectant and Deodorizing Germ Fogger does prevent the growth of mold in the future.
At SafeSpace, we work diligently to take disinfection to a higher standard. To learn more about our products, visit our website today.