Winter often tends to have some undesired effects on buildings. One of those effects is the possibility of water damage and mold growth.
Mold relies on three things; food, moisture, and warmth to grow and survive in any environment. Unluckily, your home in the winter can provide all three of these elements. As the temperatures drop during the winter months, our homes become colder. Resultantly, we use our furnaces to increase the indoor warmth, which mold can utilise to grow. Getting food to thrive on is also easy for mold, as many of the materials used to build a home such as wood studs and drywall are made of organic elements that can keep this microorganism alive.
As a consequence of this, it does not come as a surprise that most homes experience mold growth and water damage during the winter months. The cold weather can lead to pipes bursting, and near the end of the winter months when the ground thaws and the snow begins to melt, there is a higher chance of water entering your home through your basement walls and cracks in your foundation. Considering the numerous impacts of water damage and mold, you must prevent them from harming you and your household during.
Here are 5 ways you can help prevent water damage and mold growth during the winter months:
Without a doubt, insulation is an important way to prevent water damage and mold. Warm air rises, in the winter the moisture rich warm air in your home will make its way up to your attic, where it will contact with the colder environment releasing the moisture in the form of condensation. Think of a cold glass on a warm summer’s day. To prevent the air from getting into your attic where the condensation can cause problems, it is wise to insulate your attic well. Apart from preventing water damage and mold, this will reduce your reliance on your HVAC system. As an added benefit you will save money on your heating and cooling bills.
During the winter, snow may melt on your roof. As a consequence of this, your roof may have issues with leaks, ice dams, frozen pipes, and broken shingles. You can get rid of water damage and subsequently mold by repairing any issues with your roof as soon as you notice them.
In the winter, your basement’s humidity levels tend to increase. Making it an ideal breeding ground for mold. A dehumidifier can help keep the humidity levels in your basement below 50%, reducing the possibility for mold growth.
Allowing condensation to stay too long on your pipes, walls, or windows, it can cause water damage and mold. As a best practice, you should pre-emptively dry any condensation you notice on any part of your home’s interior. Your windows in the morning are especially susceptible to condensation build up. If left unattended to, this condensation can pool and be absorbed into your window frames, drywall, and even drapes. All of which are materials mold can thrive on.
Both cooking and showering can lead to additional moisture to be released into the air, thereby increasing the risk of mold and water damage. You can mitigate this issue by running the exhaust fan in your kitchen when cooking and in your bathroom when showering.
If you discover water damage in your home, act fast to clean up the area to help prevent the growth and spread of mold and further damage to your home and belongings. If you have found extensive water damage or mold growth, don’t delay. Seek the assistance of professional water damage restoration experts.
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