Mould is ugly, annoying and very bad for our health and when it comes to mould, prevention is better than the cure. In coastal areas mould grows like wildfire from May to September so now is the best time to take action and prevent mould from becoming an issue.
When it comes to dealing with mould, there’s a few basic rules to keep in mind:
1. Mould needs moisture to grow, or an environment where the relative humidity is constantly above 50%.
2. UV light will kill most types of mould.
3. Mould will grow in almost any porous surface but needs organic material to survive.
The Bathroom and Laundry
Most homes have a mould issue of some sort and it’s usually in the bathroom and laundry. If this applies to you then we suggest the following:
1. Clean the exhaust fan in your bathroom and laundry regularly. I can’t count the number of mouldy bathrooms we’ve inspected with a clogged-up exhaust fan!
2. Leave the exhaust fan running for 20 minutes after your shower or bath to clear the steam out of the room.
3. Open a window if you can and let in the natural light.
4. If you’re running a drier in the laundry use the exhaust fan and where possible, open a window. I can recall one property where a mould issue in a laundry was fixed by installing a security grill on a laundry window so that the window could be left open whilst the drier was being used.
Living Areas and Bedrooms
5. If you occasionally get mould in closets or bedrooms, buy a few desiccant dehumidifiers or “moisture eaters” such as Damp-Rid next time you go to Bunnings. At $10 a pop, they do an amazing job of keeping humidity levels in check.
6. If you’re constantly battling mould issues and/or you get condensation issues in a room then we recommend installing a dehumidifier. A dehumidifier will continually take moisture out of the air to bring the relative humidity back to 35%, which is well below the humidity level required for mould growth. Dehumidifiers can be wall-mounted and typically cost between $300 and $1000. Delonghi makes great dehumidifiers but there are a number of brands out there.
7. If you have a concentrated mould problem, this can be a sign of a leak in the premises and a plumber or roofer should be called.
8. If mould is on one side of the house, then we should look at the external environment. Often a large number of trees shading one part of the house will be the primary contributor to mould in the home.
9. If mould starts at the floor and is working its way up the walls, then you probably have an issue with drainage under the home and rising damp. If this is the case, we suggest employing the services of a plumber or building inspector.
If you see a mould problem developing, act quickly. Treating a small amount of mould is easier than treating a large mould infestation.
Clean the mould affected area with a solution of 50% white vinegar and water. The anti-fungal properties in the white vinegar will kill 98% of all types of mould. Once the mould is removed then tackle the moisture issue to prevent the mould coming back.
If you’ve already let the mould get out of hand, call the professionals. The bigger the mould infestation, the harder it is to effectively treat, as the mould will penetrate into building materials and the mould spores will have started to travel around your home, allowing the mould to re-colonise.
Electrodry Mould Cleaning effectively removes mould without the need for re-painting and is guaranteed to keep the mould at bay for at least 12 months.
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