We live in the Greater Houston area, in humid conditions where mold loves to live in both indoor and outdoor environments. Have you noticed any sudden allergic reactions or constant colds with you or family members? Do you notice a strong musty odor in your home? If you notice constant sneezing, a runny nose, red eyes, irritable rashes that seem to go away when you are away from home-you may have mold in your home.
Mold spores float in the air and enter your home through leakage in the windows, cracks in the doors, or possibly your air conditioning unit. Mold spores love moisture and the humidity. Mold spores grow in damp places such as bathrooms, kitchens, laundry rooms, and small spaces. Reducing the moisture in your home is the best way to rid any mold from growing in your home.
What can you do to reduce the humidity in your home?
- Keep the humidity below 45 percent
- Use a humidifier to reduce moisture in the air
- Increase air circulation by using ceiling fans
- Use exhaust fans when cooking or washing dishes
- Check for leaks around the refrigerator, kitchen sink, and clean refrigerator drip pans.
- Clean your bathroom tile, shower curtain, and around damp areas of any mildew regularly
- Remove or replace any rugs or carpets that do not dry quickly
- Bleach is very effective mixed with water in a spray bottle
- Vinegar mixed with water can kill mold/mildew growth without chemical fumes
- Borax can be used with water and then scrubbed clean
- Baking soda is a deodorizer and safe to use around home. Spray on once with water and scrub clean, then add a second time and leave on without rinsing off to reduce mold growth
The Environmental Protection Agency publishes a Guide to Mold in your Home. If you are uncertain as to whether you have an extensive problem with mold, read the guide and contact a professional to do an inspection. Remember to contract with an independent that did not inspect the home.
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