Mould is a part of nature. It’s everywhere in the environment we live in and forms an integral part of the decaying process. And although it’s a natural phenomenon, it’s not one we want occurring inside our homes.
In fact, mould inside your home can be very dangerous. It’s a common trigger for allergic reactions including asthma, and if you don’t remove it, it could have severe implications on your health, not to mention the structure of your home.
It’s important to understand that mould loves moisture. Generally speaking, mouldy homes are ones that are damp and poorly ventilated. It thrives in warm, humid temperatures, which is why it’s such a common problem in poorly ventilated bathrooms, kitchens and laundries.
Windows (where warm inside air meets colder outside air and cools to form condensation) are a classic spot to find black mouldy spots – either on the window frame, the tracks or even the glass itself.
Of course, mould is likely to be an issue if your home has leaking pipework, so if you suspect that to be the problem, enlist the help of a qualified plumber to get that sorted out.
These simple preventative measures should make your war against mould a whole lot more effective:
A mould infested area is going to need to be thoroughly scrubbed. So, get out your gloves, bucket and scrubbing gear and be prepared to use some elbow grease to really scour out the problem!
For mildly infested areas, warm water with a mild detergent may be sufficient. For a more serious problem, you may wish to use a disinfectant or bleach and water solution to kill the bacteria that is causing the mould.
When the surface/s is thoroughly cleaned, take time to make sure it is totally dry. This might mean leaving doors and windows open to air out a room or hanging linen or soft furnishings outside in the sunshine to dry.
How often, when you emerge from the shower or bath, is the room like a steamy sauna? That environment is mould paradise! What you need is adequate ventilation.
Exhaust fans are an inexpensive and very effective way of drawing that hot, steamy air out of the room and bringing in fresh, dry air. Leaving the exhaust fan running during and for a few minutes after your shower can make all the difference to the mould problem in your bathroom.
The same principle applies in the kitchen – by installing a range hood over the cooktop, you can draw all that hot steamy air out of the room and stop condensation from building up in that area.
How often, especially during the winter, do you hang your clothes on the airer, inside the house? It’s something that we saw our mother’s do too… but did you know that this could be significantly adding to your mould problem?
Moisture evaporating from your clothes has to go somewhere, so it’s probably causing a mould problem somewhere else in the home!
Where possible, hang clothes outdoors to dry. If they must be dried inside, open a window to create sufficient airflow and keep the air as dry as possible. If you are using a tumble dryer, make sure it is properly vented to the outside.
Your mould problem, although it’s frustrating and bad for your health, is one that can be helped. By applying some basic strategies you can make all the difference in your home.
Louise Procter is a writer for http://www.naturalhomesolutions.com.au Living by the beach, on the sunny South Coast of NSW she enjoys sipping a good strong coffee whilst creating articles that provide information and inspiration to readers to help them in their everyday lives.