Basements and Mold

            Basements are common locations for mold growth because it tends to be moist down there. That doesn’t mean you have a leaky basement (although it could mean that). Basements are moist because they are in the ground, and ground moisture seeps through foundations and increases the humidity in the environment. Couple that with stagnancy, and you have a recipe for mold growth.

            Moisture in basements penetrates everything, which is why it is important to be responsible in moisture removal and investment in mold-resistant products. If moisture is allowed to linger, mold can grow in books, clothing, and even inside of the walls. There are things you can do to protect your basement from moisture.

Preventing Basement Mold

1. De-humidifier

The first thing you can do is invest in a high-quality de-humidifier. You’ll be surprised how much moisture it can suck out of the air, and if you have a moist basement, you’ll be dumping the reservoir on a daily or every-other-day basis. De-humidifiers also measure the humidity in the room, which can give you an idea of whether your efforts are working. Thirty to 50 percent is the ideal humidity for mold control. If you have moisture, you may have numbers much higher than that.

2. Ventilation

Stagnancy also makes an area more prone to mold growth. Getting air flow can greatly reduce the chance of mold in a basement. Moisture needs a way to get out, and while you can get it out by removing buckets of water from your de-humidifier, you have to maintain that low humidity with ventilation. This also creates air movement, and mold loves stagnancy over movement.

3. Mold-resistant products

You can also create an environment in your basement that is less inviting of mold growth. There is insulation and drywall that is mold-resistant. You can choose luxury vinyl flooring over laminate or manufactured hardwood over solid hardwood. There are multiple items that can increase your mold-resistance just by picking the right products.

4. Monitor

Lastly, don’t let your basement be the area in your home that is never visited. So many mold infestations would be prevented if there were not for unoccupied areas of the home. If your basement is unfinished, put a date on the calendar to go down and check for problems every other week. Honestly, this could protect your home from a host of other problems like insect or rodent infestations that you think you would never have but then become huge problems because of inattentiveness.

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