Water damage, mold, and mildew can be a homeowner’s worst nightmare. Not only can they cause significant damage to your property, but they can also pose serious health risks. Here are ten tips to help you prevent and deal with these issues:
- Control Indoor Moisture: The key to preventing mold and mildew is controlling dampness. Ensure good ventilation in attics, keep crawlspaces dry, and route water away from the foundation.
- Ensure Your Bath Fan Is Big Enough: If your bath fan isn’t clearing out most of the moisture in your bathrooms after five to ten minutes, it may not be moving enough air. Check the cubic feet per minute (cfm) volume of your fan and replace it with a larger model if necessary.
- Use “Smart” Bathroom Timers and Humidity Sensors: Consider installing bath fan timers and humidity-sensing fans that automatically turn on and off as moisture levels rise and fall.
- Squeegee Your Shower: After a bath or a shower, squeegee water off the shower walls to eliminate most of the moisture that supports mold and mildew growth.
- Clean Visible Mold Immediately: Scrub visible mold with detergent and water and let the surface dry completely. Or use a solution of 10 percent bleach and 90 percent water.
- Use Paint with Mildewcide in Damp Areas: Mildewcide in paint can control surface mold in damp rooms like bathrooms.
- Act Quickly to Stop a Leak: In case of a plumbing leak, shut off the main water valve and turn on the lowest faucet in the house to let the water drain out harmlessly.
- Don’t Delay Cleanup: The longer things stay wet, the more likely you’ll have permanent damage. Delay can also lead to mold problems inside walls.
- But Don’t Act Rashly: Your first impulse might be to rescue your stuff, but that water might be dangerous. Stay out of the water until the power to your basement has been turned off.
- Prevent the Top Causes of Water Damage: Shut off the main water valve when you leave for extended periods, use stainless steel “no-burst” hoses for washing machines, faucets and toilets, and use frost-proof outdoor faucets.
In conclusion, dealing with water damage, mold, and mildew can be a daunting task. However, with the right knowledge and precautions, you can prevent these issues from occurring and effectively handle them when they do.