Basement Mold: What Every Homeowner Needs to Know

Why is Basement Mold So Common?

Basement mold is a very common problem throughout the Kansas City Metro Area. Where sudden rain falls, foundation leaks, shifting soil and the lovely drainage backups that are common occurrences for Kansas City residents. It seems that most homeowners in our area have experienced some form of water damage and have been concerned about mold. Mold is very common in the Midwest and throughout our entire metro area. Recognizing what causes mold, how to prevent mold with simple safeguards and what to do when you find, should all be part of common home-ownership training for our area. Unfortunately, when you buy a house no one gives you a manual on how to maintain it. So, we will do our best to educate you with the knowledge and resources to prevent mold from affecting your property and family.

The Right Conditions for Mold to Grow in Basements

Basements create one of the best environments for mold to grow. With most basements being used intermittently it allows for mold to spread undetected, many times for months or even years! One of the primary things to remember about mold is that what starts small can very quickly grow into something much bigger. Mold grows quickly in the environment that many basements provide of high humidity, organic materials, and darkness. Given even a short amount of time and mold has a field day in this perfect environment for mold to grow. As we have already discussed moisture from foundation leaks and drainage backups. Both of which are the leading cause of moisture problems in basements. Now let’s discuss non-foundation related causes for basement mold and moisture. Sump pump failure, broken water lines, water heater leak, improper grading, and clogged gutters are the most common causes of basement problems.  Remember, mold does not have to be visible to still cause spores to be in the air. Most basement mold is commonly found behind drywall and baseboards as well as under carpeting and flooring.

Basement Air Quality Can Affect Your Entire Home

With many of our basements being the location of our home’s HVAC (heating, venting, air conditioning) units, we can easily have the air quality of our basements circulated throughout the entire house. If you run your HVAC unit when there is mold located near the air handler or return air vents, there is a risk that the mold spores in the area can be circulated throughout the rest of the home and affect your family’s health. Because stirring up mold spores is so easy, it is recommended that you contract a mold professional for anything over the 10 square feet as recommended by the EPA. We recommend always getting a professional evaluation of the scope of damage before attempting any DIY methods of removing mold yourself. If the problem reoccurs, you have a bigger problem that should be fixed by a professional. FreshStart Restoration is committed to quality work, award-winning customer service and working with you to solve the mold problems in your home.

How to Prevent Basement Mold?

To prevent future problems with mold in your basement, there are several things you can do. One of the most important things to do is monitor the humidity level with a humidistat (humidity monitor). You should inspect your basement frequently, but especially after heavy rainfalls or freezing weather. Please do not attempt to remove any mold you find that is located near your HVAC system or return air vents without first having a professional mold assessment to prevent circulating mold throughout your home. Remove any excess moisture through the rental or professional grade dehumidifiers for large water problems or use a home humidifier with a drainage line for smaller water problems. Have a contractor repair the cause of the moisture. Please feel free to contact us and speak with one of our mold professionals about your mold concerns.
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