As the winter months pass, temperatures will gradually increase, causing the snow and ice that has accumulated on the ground and on top of your roof to melt. If your roof and foundation are in good condition and your home has adequate ventilation, you shouldn’t have much to worry about. However, should any of this melting snow find a way to seep into your home, it could be the start of a dangerous mold problem.
Mold growth occurs where moisture, oxygen, and organic material are present. Mold will easily grow in practically any damp area in your home, drastically affecting your home’s air quality. Exposure to mold can cause nasal and sinus congestion, skin rashes, chronic cough, and eye irritation. It is especially dangerous to those suffering from asthma and allergies.
Follow these steps in order to protect your home from mold growth brought on by water damage:
1. Have a professional inspect your home. Prevent leaks by having your roof and foundation checked out before the winter months arrive. Also make sure water drains away from your home. This is especially imperative if you are living in an older home. Choosing to be proactive in protecting your home from ground water penetration will help ensure that you do not have to worry about mold growing inside of your home.
2. Be vigilant in looking for signs of water damage and know where to look for them. Damp basement floors, buckling of floors or walls, crumbling wood, and water stains are signs that you have/had a water leak. The sooner that you are able to detect these potential problems the quicker you can stop the leak with proper repairs. This will limit the amount of time that mold has to set in and begin to grow, adversely affecting the indoor air quality of your home. Once water damage has occurred, you must act quickly! Remove and discard any carpeting, drywall, and insulation that have been damp for more than two days.
3. Test your air quality for mold. Mold growth can even occur when condensation builds up in a poorly ventilated area. Just because you do not have any visible water damage does not mean that you shouldn’t at least consider performing a home air quality test in order to check for mold. Mold can grow behind walls and go undetected until it poses a serious health hazard. Periodically perform a home air test for mold to be certain you do not have any hidden mold growth.