Tips To Prevent Basement Mold
10 Tips To Prevent Basement Mold!
A common question we face is how do I prevent mold in my basement, particularly after a water damage event.
This article provides you with ten tips to prevent mold in your basement.
Implement these tips to avoid future headaches and costly mold removal in the future.
How To Prevent Basement Mold
These 13 ways to prevent basement mold are all critical to a healthy, mold free basement. My guess is that there are quite a few mold prevention tips here that you are overlooking. Never fear know better, do better. Lets get to it shall we?
How Do Molds Grow Indoors
As we mentioned earlier, spores from molds are all around us, which means they are also floating throughout the air inside your home. Unfortunately, molds only need two things to grow indoors: excessive moisture and organic matter to grow on like drywall, carpet, ceiling tiles, wallpaper, insulation, or wood. When indoor areas of a home are exposed to high levels of moisture or humidity, mold can take hold quickly. This is especially true for basements, as these spaces typically provide poor ventilation.
Basement moisture can be caused by two main sources, including outdoor moisture sources and indoor moisture sources.
Outdoor Moisture Sources
Outdoor moisture sources include rain, floods, or groundwaterall of which can seep through cracks in your foundation or through improperly sealed window wells. Improper yard grading and clogged gutters can also play a role in moisture building in your basement.
Indoor Moisture Sources
Indoor moisture sources include leaky pipes, laundering clothes, overwatering houseplants, and more. Anything in your home that causes high levels of humiditywhich could include showering, cooking, or even breathingand produces condensation can lead to a moisture-prone basement.
Types of Harmful Molds Found in Basements
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My Basement Leaked During Heavy Rain And A Towel Was Left On The Floor Upon Removing The Towel The Floor Was Slimy And Black How Do I Clean It Up
Assuming the floor is concrete, spray the area with a Borax/water solution. Clean up the solution and any debris with paper towels.
Occasionally the mold growth will leave behind a stain, even after a vigorous cleaning. The staining is an aesthetic rather than a health issue. If this occurs, steam/pressure cleaning may be necessary.
We Have A Problem With A Room In Our Basement It Is Uninsulated And Has A Moldy Smell The Odor Is Worse In The Winter Months My Son Likes To Sleep In The Room
Youll want to focus on two items increasing the temperature and the air flow. Addressing these issues will lower the humidity and the mold growth/musty odor.
Purchase a relative humidity gauge and install it in the basement. Your goal is to keep the RH below 50%. Increase the heat as necessary to lower the RH until youve reached 50%.
The easiest way to increase the ventilation is to run a bathroom exhaust fan. If theres an existing fan in the basement, run it at least 12 hours per day in the winter months.
Its also important to verify whether the basement is suffering from vapor emissions through the concrete slab. This occurs when water vapor moves up through the slab and into the room above. If the basement is carpeted, the moisture can become trapped and lead to mold growth. See our page on basement mold for more info.
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I Found A Hard Black Coating Under Painted Concrete In My Basement If After Cleaning Can I Paint Over It It Did Not All Scrub Up Does Mold Get Imbedded In The Cement
Based on your description, this does not sound like mold. On concrete, mold will appear in either a fuzzy format or a stain like appearance. It would not feel like a hard coating. In either scenario, it is fine to paint the concrete after youve thoroughly scrubbed and cleaned the area. Anything remaining is simply the pigment from the prior mold growth, which cannot regrow.
When To Call A Professional To Get Rid Of Mold In Your Basement
Most basement mold cases are easy to tackle with the methods discussed in this guide, but major problems like hidden moisture leaks, floods, or ruptured pipes can lead to an explosion of mold growth in materials that have to be replaced. When you experience widespread mold, the job is better left to a mold remediation specialist.
Companies that maintain an American Council for Accredited Certification mold certification have the qualifications to safely remove moldy material and remediate mold on surfaces that cannot be replaced. Many of these businesses also specialize in basement encapsulation to prevent further problems from mold in basement areas.
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How To Prevent Mold In A Basement
So, youve successfully removed the moldy materials in your basement. Preventing mold from coming back, however, is another story.
Prevention means removal of the water and food source, and that sometimes can be tricky. Water can be controlled by fixing leaks, searching for and addressing seepage through waterproofing basement walls, installing a pump to remove accumulating water, and reducing the amount of moisture in the air using air conditioning, a dehumidifier and/or a basic fan.
Addressing the food source requires the removal of cellulose-based building materials including drywall, which uses paper to contain the gypsum.
But what should you deploy as a replacement for drywall or wood, both of which have been proven inadequate?
Trusscore makes a PVC-based wall panel product called Trusscore Wall& CeilingBoard that is ideal for basements, and particularly ideal for mold-prone basements. Wall& CeilingBoard panels are waterproof. Unlike wood and drywall, the product doesnt absorb water and will never swell or degrade when exposed to moisture. Plus, perhaps most importantly, Wall& CeilingBoard stops basement mold growth by denying it a food source. As a result, your basement wall panels will remain undamaged for years to come.
In addition to installing four times faster than drywall and cleaning with a simple wipe, Trusscore Wall& CeilingBoard has something else up its sleeve it pairs seamlessly with Trusscore SlatWall for a customizable wall-based storage system.
Health Dangers Of Mold And Serious Risks
Did you know that about 10 to 20 percent of people across the world are allergic to mold? That’s a pretty big number, so obviously it’s pretty common. As I mentioned, there are approximately 100,000 different types of mold and many of them are beneficial like penicillin, the fungus that goes into blue cheese and the yeasts that are in bread and beer.
Common mold you’ll find growing inside your home are cladosporium, alternaria, asopergillus and penecillium. While these are relatively harmless, they may be a sign of moisture trouble and you’ll still want to remove them. Black mold, or stachybotrys chartarum, is the culprit that has received so much negative publicity for its toxicity and potential for causing serious health problems.
The Health Canada has determined that people experiencing sensitivity to mold spores will develop symptoms such as congestion, wheezing, eye irritation, asthma or skin rashes. Continued exposure can increase the severity and may cause a fever, dizziness, shortness of breath or flu-like symptoms.
If you discover black mold growing in your basement, it’s important to remove it as soon as possible. The spores and toxins produced from this type of mold can cause lung disease, recurrent sinusitis, permanent central nervous system damage and in extreme cases with prolonged exposure, death.
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What Are Todays Most Popular Mold Killer For Basement Models
There are many mold killer for basement items accessible today for men and women seeking quality and reliability. Every mold killer for basement model follows the same essential premise. But they appeal to various users.Its no secret that certain products appeal to specific populations. What if you could see which products were the most popular across all consumers? You can, and weve got the list. Check out our collection of products that appear to appeal to all ages, genders, and locations.
How To Get Rid Of Black Mold In Basement
You may have different kinds of molds in your basement. You should get rid of them whether they are yellow, white, green, blue or black.
- Step 1: Remove everything from your basement and make sure it is dry before you try to get rid of your problem. If your insulation, ceiling tiles or drywall are moldy, replacement is your only option. But if its only on the surface of painted ceilings, walls, and floors, you should be able to clean it off with a bleach solution. The CDC recommends no more than 1 cup of bleach to 1 gallon of water. Commercial removal products may also be useful.
- Step 2: You can scrub cinder blocks and concrete walls and floors with the same solution. You will need to let it soak into cracks and crevices to kill the black mold. Once you get rid of it, and the walls and floor are dry, you can use a sealant and paint. Be sure you have adequate ventilation while working in the basement and wear gloves while cleaning.
- Step 3: As you plan for removal, consider steps to prevent further problems. Do whatever you can to maintain control over the humidity level and ensure ventilation in the future.
- Step 4: And remember to clean everything you return to your basement. If you have items, such as cardboard boxes, with a musty smell, toss them and get new ones. Compared to starting over, the cost for this black mold clean-up will be small.
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How To Prevent Mold From Coming Back
by | Aug 15, 2020 | Basement Mold |
Mold poses numerous health risks and cause property damage if left unchecked. After all your cleaning, repairs, effort, and spent money, without proper management, mold could still return, making you do it all over again. To make sure that it would not come back, you should take the necessary measures to prevent them from returning.
Here are some tips to prevent molds from coming back.
Basement Mold Prevention Tips
Mold requires nourishment, warmth, and moisture in order to grow. Unfortunately, your basement most likely has all three things, making it the perfect place for mold growth. Fortunately, there are ways to deal with basement mold growth. Four key steps in dealing with mold colonies are:
The fourth step, protection, is the most important and will be our focus here. As the old cliché goes, an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure. Preventing the growth of mold is ultimately cheaper and easier than trying to get rid of a mold colony. Also, focusing on protecting your homeyour basement, especiallyfrom mold growth will make sure you wont have to deal with the first three steps.
The next two sections will briefly discuss the usual causes of mold growth and the methods of detecting mold in your basement. The third section provides simple tasks that you can apply right away to prevent mold growth in your basement.
UPDATE: We have recently added a checklist to help you get started on attaining a mold-free and healthy household that is safe for your family and loved ones to live in.
This is a summary of the tips below. See the checklist here!
Also Check: How To Clean Black Mold In Basement
Types Of Basement Mold
Various types of mold will infest your basement. While they are all hideous, not all of them are toxic to humans.
Molds can be divided into two categories:
Allergenic molds usually pose no health risk unless you are extremely sensitive to molds or asthmatic. Black molds, on the other hand, produce a toxic chemical called mycotoxins and are particularly harmful to humans and pets.
Here are the common types of molds that can infest your basement.
Aspergillus is one of the most common household mold species. There are different types of Aspergillus, and most of them thrive well indoors. Some of the Aspergillus molds are allergenic, but some are mycotoxin and should be removed by a specialist, especially if it is something like black mold.
This fungus is dark green and found on damp walls, ceilings, and even furniture. It flourishes in humid environments, but can also grow in areas that are dry with high levels of humidity or condensation.
How To Prevent Black Mold In Basement
Once you have it in your basement, it is very hard to get rid of, and it creates problems that may cost you a lot. Your best course is to prevent the problem. Controlling moisture and the humidity level of your basement is most important.If you notice a musty smell, check for moisture. Is water seeping in through the cinder blocks? Do you have a leaky pipe? Is your drywall damp? Are there dark splotches on the walls or ceiling? Fungi grow fast in moist, humid conditions, so do regular checks of your basement if its a space you dont often visit.You may want to invest in a dehumidifier. The cost will be minimal compared to the expense of clean-up and removal. Airflow is necessary, so dont stack items to the ceiling or very close to walls. Use an exhaust fan or open doors or windows when weather permits. Fungi are attracted to organic material, so dont grow plants or store firewood in your basement.
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Lower And Monitor The Rooms Humidity
Moisture provides an ideal growing environment for mold. Therefore, reducing your basements humidity is a great way to preempt its formation.
The best way to achieve this is by using a dehumidifier. This device helps to keep a rooms humidity within acceptable levels. To measure humidity levels, all you need is a hygrometer.
Fix Any Fixtures Damaged By Mold
With that said, there are some occasions where you might be able to save and restore items affected by mold. Some items that are considered to be prime restoration options include:
- Furniture. Wooden furniture can be restored if you are willing to sand away the portion eaten away by mold. You will need wood filler and a wood stain, but its still possible.
- Ceramic. Soaking ceramic in white vinegar will remove the mold and the stains.
- Plastic. Most plastics will be easy to wipe down. Just make sure its not porous!
- Sheetrock/Walls. If you have mold-damaged walls, you will need to call professional mold remediation crews to fix this. Either way, you will need to address this to prevent mold from re-entering your room.
Note: You still need to remove the restorable items from the room and treat them to continue your clean-up. When theyre mold-free, you can re-introduce them to the room.
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Dont Want To Use Chemicals Heres How To Get Rid Of Mold In Your Basement Naturally
Understandably, some households want to avoid using harsh chemicals in the home to treat mold, especially if its a small and manageable amount. Thankfully, there are several natural and less-harsh products to clean mold away.
For example, vinegar and baking soda are both acidic and can be used to scrub away mold and help kill the spores in its wake. Simply make a half-water, half-vinegar solution, spray on the mold, leave overnight, and come back the next day to scrub with soapy water. For baking soda, make a paste of 50:50 baking soda and water to use as an abrasive scrub, or mix 2 tablespoons of baking soda with 2 cups of water in a spray bottle and spray the solution on the affected area before scrubbing.
Though these methods are usually effective in getting rid of mold in basements, more serious problems may require stronger solutions or professional intervention.
Keep Plants Out Of Your Basement
Mold spores spread through the soil in your plant pots. If you really want to place plants in your basement, be extra-vigilant for the signs of mold and avoid overwatering them. Although plants are not usually placed in dark areas like basement as they require sunlight, it is still good to be informed.
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Clean The Area And Remove The Moldy Items
After you stop the source of the mold in the basement, then mix ½ white distilled vinegar and ½ baking soda together. Then use a scrub brush and brush the mold that is on the floor, carpet, walls, etc. If you are having a hard time with this, then call in a professional.
Moldy items can be put into the washing machine if you have tried scrubbing them and the mold doesnt come off. Also, sometimes it is better to throw away the moldy item and just replace it.