Mold In Your Home Can Make You Very Sick
By Eduardo Howard
One of the biggest causes of poor indoor air quality is mold! Mold produces allergens and irritants, but it also produces potentially toxic substances. Mold and mold spores in very small amounts are generally harmless but in larger concentrations they can adversely affect indoor air quality and health and can especially be dangerous for people with allergies, asthma and respiratory conditions.
Mold growth is usually the byproduct of moisture and humidity along with poor ventilation. Moisture can come from a variety of sources such as cracks & holes, water leaks, doing laundry, taking showers, and unsealed crawl spaces, to name a few. What is most concerning, is mold growth in hidden places like between walls, inside light sockets, under sinks, and in dark damp corners of the house.
The air in your home can absorb a certain amount of moisture, depending on the air temperature, but at lower air temperatures, the air can't absorb as much. This is why moisture condenses on cold surfaces like on windows in the morning.
The way to control mold growth in the house is to reduce the relative humidity in the air and minimize moisture which contributes to wet or damp surfaces. If you do not eliminate water problems, the mold problem will never go away, even if you “remove” the mold. It is also necessary to reduce the air exchange from outside, especially in the winter months. One of the best ways to avoid moisture problems and mold formation is ventilation. Getting rid of moist and stale air and replacing it with fresh air prevents a lot of these problems. It is ideal to use mechanical ventilation for this, but if that is not an option then regularly opening windows can make due. Also relative humidity should stay in the 40-60% range year round.