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Tips: Control Moisture – Control Mold

How Do I Control Moisture to Prevent Mold from Growing?

Here are some tips for controlling moisture indoors where mold is a problem:

  • Maintain humidity levels at 30-50%:
    Controlling humidity levels will greatly reduce the presence of mold, as well as dust mites and other microbes.Humidity levels can be measured with a simple tool called a hygrometer, which can be purchased at home improvement warehouses and hardware stores.Besides weather in the southern part of the U.S., humidity can be caused by dishwashers, especially the heated drying cycle.Another common source of humidity is trapped bathroom steam from showers, and the escaping air from the clothes dryer.By checking the humidity with a hygrometer, one can know when steps to reduce moisture are required.
  • Reduce the moisture in the air:
    Air conditioners and humidifiers are both excellent ways to reduce moisture in the air if proper ventilation is not possible.In addition, in the case of humid weather, when ventilation will not make must of a difference, running the air conditioner or humidifier will help greatly.Mold will begin to grow rapidly as the humidity reaches 50%, and especially so during the summer months, so check the levels often with a hygrometer.Be sure to have your air conditioner or humidifier cleaned each year before use, as a dirty filter can make mold and allergies much worse by exposing your home or business to even more mold spores.
  • Keep air flowing:
    Ventilation, when possible, is the best defense against mold. Whether there has been a previous infestation of mold or not, it will continue to grow wherever there is a lack of proper air flow.Increase ventilation by leaving doors between rooms and closets open.Make sure the clothes dryer is vented to the outside, and that there are no leaks in the ventilation hosing. A very important place to monitor ventilation is in the bathroom.Most will have a small window for air flow, but that is not always enough. Frequently use the vent fan, and in the absence of one, use a portable fan to clear out steam after showers and baths.Doing so will greatly reduce the chance of mold on the walls and shower doors and curtains.

Further Recommended Reading :

Joslyn from the MoldBlogger Team

toxic mold litigation

Toxic Mold Lawsuits

How common are Toxic Mold Lawsuits?

In a country where personal injury and negligence lawsuits are commonplace, it was only a matter of time before the United States saw lawsuits regarding toxic black mold.

There are now several active lawsuits around the country regarding mold in residential or commercial buildings, and the exposure too their inhabitants.

What is Toxic Mold?

Toxic mold, scientifically known as Stachybotrys, is the greenish-black mold that grows on material with high cellulose content, such as straw, fiberboard, dry wall, and paper.

It does not grow on plastics and vinyl. Stachybotrys gives off powerful mycotoxins that are dangerous to human health when exposed to them.

With the public becoming more and more aware of the dangers of mold, and upon the decision of most health departments to label Stachybotrys as a health hazard, the path has been laid for lawsuits to commence.

What is the Outcome of Toxic Mold Lawsuits?

Building owners, homebuilders, and insurance companies are all finding themselves on the defending end of litigation.

Courts are taking these claims very seriously, and juries have already awarded large sums to people who have been negatively affected by toxic mold.

Insurance companies have had to payout when they failed to pay for moisture-related repairs that eventually turned into a mold problem, and homebuilders have lost suits that claims bad workmanship contributed to the ability for Stachybotrys to grow and take over.

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Asthma and Mold in Children

Mold Affects Children’s Ability to Play and Have Fun

Mold can be dangerous to children with asthma or bronchial infection. While a mild asthma attack may not cause any permanent damage, having a severe episode is sometimes bad enough to inhibit breathing and physical functioning.

Considering that children usually spend most of their days at school, and are often involved in exercise and sports on the playground or after school, it is important to keep children’s respiratory systems as healthy as possible.

Symptoms of Mild, Moderate & Severe Asthma Attacks

Symptoms during a mild attack can include becoming out of breath during physical activity, feeding, or talking. In some cases, a child may take longer to eat because they need frequent interruptions for more air.

Moderate episodes caused increased breathlessness during talking and feeding, while severe asthma attacks can render a child breathless while simply sitting up or sleeping. This can lead to confusion, blackouts, and breathing cessation.

Prevention

While mold is not necessarily the number one asthma trigger for children, following some prevention methods, and eliminating mold the instant it is suspected, is extremely important in maintaining children’s respiratory health and function.

You could reduce the chances of your child developing asthma by half, which is a great incentive to know how to identify and treat mold in your home.

Further Recommended Reading :

Joslyn from the MoldBlogger Team

The Dangers of Toxic Mold in the Home

Why Is Toxic Mold in Your Home Dangerous?

Here are a few reasons why mold is so dangerous when growing in your home :

  • Health problems:Stachybotrys can be responsible for a large variety of health and upper respiratory-related problems.Among these are allergies, asthma, and other breathing difficulties.

    Some studies have shown that mold can increase a child’s chances of developing asthma by double.

    Other symptoms related to mold exposure include headaches, unusual skin rashes, nosebleeds, itchy or burning eyes, or any other allergy or cold-related symptoms.

    Memory problems, and even death, have been reported by those exposed to Stachybotrys.

  • Decreased home value:A home’s value will greatly decrease depending on the type and scope of the mold infestation.Stachybotrys can cause extensive damage within the home, and may do damage that the current homeowner can’t afford to repair.

    Getting out from under a house in this situation is sure to bring a significant decrease in the sale price, as the new homeowner will be left with much renovating to complete.

  • Expensive clean up:This black type of toxic mold is well known for its ability to extensively damage homes.We’ve all seen the news footage of camera crews filming the interior homes ravaged by flooding due to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita.

    The mold grows fast, and it grows tough to clean as well. Stachybotrys is not the kind of mold most homeowners will want to clean up themselves.

    A good, reliable mold remediator will be needed for most clean-ups, and depending on the damage, it could be very costly for them to complete the job.

  • Structural damage:
    When mold grows in certain situations, such as during natural disasters, it will grow fast due to the excess moisture that cannot be removed. Even when cleaning crews are finally able to enter the homes and remove the moldy flooring and furnishings, often times too much damage has already been done.
    Sometimes, the best way to make sure mold is fully eradicated is to forgo killing and scraping it, and completely remove it by removing all the surfaces with which it has come into contact. This can be dry walls, wood structures, flooring, and even the roof. The damage can be extensive.


Further Recommended Reading :

Joslyn from the MoldBlogger Team

toxic mold

Understanding the Dangers of Toxic Mold

What Is Toxic Mold?

Stachybotrys is a greenish-black mold that is often known as toxic mold, or black mold. This type of mold is often more dangerous than other white molds, such as food mold.

Highly dangerous toxins are released into the air by Stachybotrys, and breathing anywhere around the infestation of mold can cause serious health risks.

There are also other dangers of living with this toxic mold, including damage to the home that can be costly to its overall value.

What are the Dangers of Toxic Mold?

Since a house doesn’t have to be subject to a natural disaster for Stachybotrys to grow, it is important for all homeowners to know the dangers of this toxic mold, so that if they suspect their house is affected, it can be dealt with immediately. Leaks, high humidity, and poor ventilation are all possible avenues that encourage mold growth.

Preventing mold is the best thing a homeowner can do, and leaving a known patch to grow beyond contamination is only asking for one or more of these dangers to knock on the door of your home.

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Why do it yourself Mold Remediation?

The killing and removal of mold by professionals is known as mold remediation. This can be timely and therefore a costly solution to your mold problem. For many homeowners, a small mold problem is just as easily taken care of by themselves. There are necessary items needed when attempting a do-it-yourself mold removal, including having the proper equipment and attire. Mold is a serious threat to human health, and even dead mold can cause allergy or asthma problems in those with good health.

By using the proper equipment, and wearing the proper attire, homeowners can make sure they kill and remove the mold in the safest, most effective way. We will be sharing more on Mold Remediation and these tips tomorrow! We’ll see you then.

-The Moldblogger Team

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