Is mold prevention a problem in your home? While mold is a natural part of the outdoor environment, mold that reaches indoors is not only unsightly, but can cause harmful allergic reactions to you and your family. This troublesome fungus can show up in your garage, air ducts and even your living room. Whether or not you employ a dedicated maid service to keep potential infestations in check, it is always a good idea to keep an eye out for mold in your home. Here are some tips for exercising proper mold prevention.
Mold Prevention: Common Problem Areas
The first thing to know in mold prevention is where to check for unwanted growths. Mold–also known as mildew–is a fungus that thrives in moist, damp environments. Growths are commonly found by maid services and residents on windowsills, in plumbing areas or in bathrooms. Mold growths can spread by releasing microscopic spores, which can land anywhere in your house. Mold prevention specialists recommend checking the following areas for mold regularly:
- Kitchen appliances. Give your refrigerator, dishwasher, sink and cupboards a monthly once-over.
- Garages & carports. Checking these areas is very important in mold prevention given their consistent exposure to outside air.
- Fireplaces. Hearthsides and fireplaces are high-moisture areas due to their proximity to chimneys.
- Basements. Ceiling corners, wall fissures and floor cracks don’t exactly help with the goal of mold prevention. Be sure to check out storage areas and extra rooms for problems.
One of the biggest giveaways of mold is its heavy, musty odor. If you smell this in your home, it’s time to call your maid service or pull on your house cleaning gloves.
Proper Cleaning Methods for Mold Prevention
Mold lives off of moisture, so the first step in correcting any growths is to remove the source of water. Fix any plumbing leaks, and ensure all your windows are airtight. Dry off everything completely. Once all surfaces are dry, spray affected areas with detergent and scrub vigorously. Mold prevention specialists and maid services alike begin mold cleanings in this way.
The majority of mold prevention cases can be solved with time and basic house cleaning techniques. Keep the following tips in mind to avoid problems for yourself and your maid service:
- Run the bathroom fan when showering
- Address any water leakage problems immediately
- Properly maintain gutters and waterspouts
- If you smell mold, investigate it–growths can sometimes occur behind wallpaper, under carpets or on the top side of ceiling tiles
In rare cases, unchecked mold growths can spread over entire walls. Areas of this size (over about 10 square feet) will require the help of a maid service or mold prevention specialist. Depending on the severity of the problem, mycotoxins (such as chlorine bleach) may be used. Mycotoxins should not be mixed with any other detergents, due to the possibility of dangerous chemical reactions. Be aware that the best solution in these cases may simply be new drywall.
Mold prevention is important if you or your family experience allergies. Mold releases allergens into the air that can cause irritation and allergic reactions. Individuals with asthma or common allergies often experience increased symptoms when exposed to mold.
A small number of people suffer from severe allergic reactions when exposed to mold. Symptoms can include difficulty breathing and high fevers. If you suspect someone is having a severe allergic reaction to mold they should immediately seek professional medical help.
When cleaning up mold problems, maid services and specialists wear air filters. If you are performing your own clean-up, it is advisable to wear a mask to avoid lung and eye irritation.
Contact Maids by Trade for any mold prevention concerns. We are bonded, insured, and do our part for the environment by using exclusively EcoPink™ certified cleaning products. For the best professional maid service in the Portland, Lake Oswego or Tigard-Beaverton area, call now to reclaim your living space.