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Home Construction Prevents Mold

What is The Best Mold Prevention Method?

Moisture control is the number one preventative for stopping mold growth, and during new home construction is the easiest and earliest way to take measures to prevent future mold outbreaks.

Homebuilders are using a number of new ideas and products to help keep homeowners mold-free, because they know prevention is the least expensive way to deal with mold.

Some steps being undertaken by contractors during new home construction include:

Proper site selection:

The first and most important step in building a home is choosing its site. If a home is built on a site with a high water table, future moisture problems are greatly reduced.

In addition, the proper site will eliminate any extra landscaping or grading that will need to be done to prevent moisture from entering the home or foundation.

Land drainage and grading:

The site a house is built on should be graded, or sloped, so that rain and melted snow flow away from the foundation. In areas where this is not possible, special landscaping and drainage can be installed to redirect the water away from the house.

Damp-proofing:

Damp-proofing is when a special coating is applied on the foundation wall that sits below grade. Make sure your builder uses a durable waterproofing material, as the coating can be damaged during the construction of the home. A high-quality material is essential.

Elimination of Fake Stucco:

When fake stucco is not applied properly, it becomes a breeding ground for mold.

Many builders are encouraging homeowners wary of mold to forgo it altogether, as the application of fake stucco needs to be 100% properly and accurately installed to avoid excess moisture between the surface of the material and the walls.

Positive ventilation:

When the air pressure inside is higher than the air pressure outside, this is known as positive ventilation. Adjusting the HVAC system so that the air is positive will force allergens and mold spores outside the home.

Negative air will bring the air in from the outside, which is not good for those suffering from allergies. The air should not be set too positively though, or else moisture will be forced into the walls and other small cracks and surfaces.

Whole-house air purifiers:

Primarily used in homes which house individuals with suppressed immune systems, these air purifiers can be rather expensive.

However, if you deal with allergies quite frequently, a whole-house air purifier is an excellent way to prevent allergens, dust mites, and mold spores from entering the home and making their stay known.

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Joslyn from the MoldBlogger Team

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  1. Mold Aid Helped My Family Diagnose and Remediate A Serious Mold Problem

    On January 2, 2011 after taking a shower I noticed a rash on my feet and ankles. I also had sinusitis symptoms for the weeks preceding the noticeable rash. I went to the Dr. on January 3rd to address the sinus symptoms (also had a slight fever and sore throat). The Dr. didn’t want to put me on steroids to address the rash as he felt it would be detrimental to my body’s ability to fight the cold and fever. I began researching possible causes for the rash and recalled seeing what looked like mold on the dartboard in the finished basement. The more I looked into the symptoms of mold exposure, the more it looked like the possible cause. Between the two of us we had many of the classic symptoms, persistent sinusitis, rash, fatigue, burning eyes, headaches, shortness of breath, IBS, occasional sore throat, tremors, ear aches, difficulty concentrating and sputum. Based on my symptoms (more specific to the spreading rash) and the visible mold, we vacated the home on January 5th.

    I immediately contacted Mold Aid in Gainesville, VA to schedule an air quality test and they were on site the very next evening. John Taylor and Glen did a complete inspection of the home, collecting air samples on each floor and samples of visible mold. John found visible mold on chair fabric as well as books in the bookcase. John and Glen also tested moisture levels in the home and found elevated levels at the front basement wall. Further inspection revealed a water stain on the carpet, rusty carpet tack strips and visible mold around the electrical outlet. John didn’t open up the front wall for a visible inspection as his nine years of mold remediation experience told him that would be where the highest concentration of mold would be. Mold Aid was able to view inside the ductwork and provide pictures of visible mold growth. As part of the home inspection, John discovered a pin hole leak in a washer hose, a water supply line leak above the hot water heater, a kitchen window leak and a condensation issue in the HVAC room.

    Mold Aid provided the air quality test results Monday, January 10 and we were all very surprised. The mold spore count levels on all three floors of the home far exceeded acceptable levels. We had a very serious mold problem. John provided a comprehensive mold remediation plan, fully explaining the process with pictures of the known issues to include the mold killer (Benefect) they would be using. We were very happy to hear Benefect was not harmful to humans or pets and asked how soon they could start. At this point we were living in a cheap (in every way) extended stay and wanted our lives and home back.

    Mold Aid was able to get us on the schedule for January 18 and 19. The entire house was fogged and negative air pressure was established with high volume, commercial air scrubbers venting to the outside. Mold Aid removed the drywall and insulation on the entire front basement wall and determined the sump pump was not able to keep up with moisture around the foundation allowing water to condensate around most of the basement perimeter. As part of the mold remediation plan and after fogging, all of our carpet and padding was removed from the home (the spore count was too high to remove from the carpet and pad), all items containing porous materials (clothing, shoes, fabric covered chairs, etc.) were bagged and placed in the garage. The items placed in the garage had dead mold spores on them and based on the mold sensitivity we had developed required HEPA vacuuming prior to bringing them back into the home.

    We were able to move back into our home on January 20, only 15 days after we vacated. We were so happy to be home and quasi back to normal. Many people go years not knowing their home could be making them sick. . Mike from Ashburn

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