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Articles tagged with: mold

Jan14

Mold Prevention During the Winter Months

While mold can grow any time of the year, it is in winter when mold tends to become even more of an issue.

Mold is a homeowner’s nightmare. Not only is it unsightly, it can also pose a threat to your home and family’s health. Once it starts to grow, it is difficult to get rid of. That said, you need to take some preventive measures to prevent them from growing in the first place.

Use these tips to prevent mold and mildew growth in your house during the winter months.

Keep all surfaces clean and dry

Condensation and dampness becomes increasingly common in winter. Many of you probably notice some water droplets on the windows or mirrors. This may not seem like a big deal. But if left unchecked, it may encourage mold growth. Dry window surfaces regularly to keep condensation from accumulating. This can also prevent it from becoming potential focus points for mold growth.

Bathroom carry the most moisture in the home. As we all know, mold requires moisture to grow. Keep an eye out on moisture in the bathroom and keep all surfaces clean and dry. 

Use exhaust fans

Taking hot showers and cooking can provide your home with plenty of moisture. Since you can’t open the windows during the cold winter months, having an exhaust fan can be of great help. Turn on the exhaust fan every time you cook or bathe. Leave it on for about 15 to 20 minutes after cooking or showering to vent out excess moisture. 

Keep humidity levels below 40%

As the temperature drops, so does the humidity level. Winter air is dry and can dry out your skin and mucous membrane. Often, humidifiers are used to combat dryness and add water vapor into the indoor air. Although beneficial, humidifiers can create extra moisture and provide the perfect breeding ground for mold and bacteria.                    

The ideal humidity level for your home is somewhere between 30 to 50%. Use a hygrometer to monitor the humidity level inside your home. Keep humidity levels below 40% to prevent mold growth.

Oct02

4 Signs There is Mold in Your House

Most people are aware of the dangers of mold to our health. Aside from being a health hazard, it can also negatively affect the value of your Denver Colorado home. The problem is that most people aren’t even aware that mold is present in their Denver home.

Here are 4 signs there is mold in your Denver Colorado house.

There’s a musty odor

Just because there are no visible signs of mold, it doesn’t necessarily mean that your Denver home is mold-free. Sometimes, you can’t see it but you can smell it. Often, a musty, moldy odor is the only clue that mold is present in your home.

Your allergies never subside

Exposure to mold can trigger an allergic reaction. Symptoms often include sneezing, nasal congestion, itchy throat, puffy eyes, and skin irritation. If you usually experience allergic symptoms every time you’re at home, and the symptoms seem to go away when you leave the house, mold exposure may be the cause of the problem.

You notice dark spots on your wall

If you notice some dark spots on your wall, then you know you have a problem. The question is, how much. Just because you only see few spots on the wall, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the mold growth is limited to that area. That’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Address the problem immediately as soon as you find out there is mold in your house. The last thing you want is for molds to spread in different parts of your home. Not only is it costly, it can also pose a threat to the health of your family.

There is a leak in your home

Most people assume the leaks are a minor problem. Some people would just ignore that dripping sound, thinking it’s not that big of a deal. But if left unaddressed, it can lead to bigger, more complicated problems.

According to the U.S. EPA, a leaky faucet can waste more than 3,000 gallons of water per year. It can also lead to mold growth. Damp and wet environment provide the perfect condition for mold to thrive. If you failed to address leak problems, chances are there is mold present in your home.  

Aug08

6 Hidden Hazards in Your Denver Colorado Home and What You Can Do About Them

Our home is our safe haven. After a long, stressful day at work, many of us look forward to resting and relaxing in our home. We think of it as a place of comfort and safety. If you have kids, creating a secure, welcoming, and safe environment for your family is on top of your priority list. If you think you’re safe in your Denver Colorado home, think again.

There are numerous hazards inside your Denver home that people tend to overlook. The biggest dangers are the ones that you can’t see. They are posing a threat to the health and safety of your loved ones, and you’re not even aware they are present in your home.

Here are 6 hidden hazards in your home, along with some suggestions on what you can do about them.

Mold

Molds are a natural part of the environment. They are literally everywhere, but active mold growth requires moisture. If you recently experienced flooding, water damage, roof leaks or pipe leaks, odds are there is mold inside your home.

Exposure to mold may cause a multitude of health problems. Not all people are sensitive to molds. Some develop reactions when exposed to mold while others do not. For those who are sensitive to molds, exposure to molds can cause allergic reaction. They usually develop symptoms such as nasal stuffiness, sneezing, eye irritation, wheezing, throat irritation, and skin irritation. The symptoms may worsen overtime. Infant, children, older adults, and immune-compromised individuals are more susceptible to molds. Often, these individuals develop more serious reactions such as shortness of breath, coughing, and asthma attack.

Mold starts to grow within 24 to 48 hours of moisture problem or water damage. If you have recently experience water damage, act fast and address the problem as soon as possible.

Carbon Monoxide

Carbon monoxide is as colorless, odorless, and tasteless gas. It can build up inside your home without you even knowing it. The problem is that once you breathe in carbon dioxide, the CO molecules will displace the oxygen in the body and leads to poisoning. CO poisoning kills more than 200 people a year. It is a serious issue you shouldn’t take lightly.

Carbon monoxide is usually produced by burning fuel. If you have fuel-burning appliances like wood stove, fireplace, water heater, and furnace, you are at risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. To thwart danger posed by carbon monoxide, we highly recommend that you install carbon monoxide detector in your home. Also, make sure that all fuel burning appliances as well as the vents and chimneys are inspected annually.

Ideally, you should have one in every floor and place them near the sleeping areas. This way, everyone will be alerted by the presence of this silent killer. Also, make it a habit to test the detector regularly and replace the battery as needed. This is a simple step to ensure that your entire family is protected from the dangers of carbon monoxide. Remember, carbon monoxide is an invisible gas. Without a functional detector, it would be impossible to detect the presence of carbon monoxide inside your home.

Electrical issues

Electrical fire is one of the leading causes of residential fires. According to the U.S. Fire Administration, electrical fires account to about 6.3% of all residential fires. This equates to about $1.3 billion in property damage.

Outdated wiring, faulty outlets, faulty appliances, and misuse of extension cords are just some of the most common causes of electrical fires. Most electrical fires are preventable. Don’t let these issues cause a fire in your home.

Older homes usually have inadequate electrical wiring, which can be an electrical and fire hazard. Keep you and your family out of harm’s way by hiring a certified electrician and have your electrical system inspected. If you often use electrical cords, be sure to keep them away from sources of water and heat. Also, never place them beneath the carpets. Inspect all electrical cords and discard all plugs or cords that are frayed or worn.

Structural damage

Some cracks on the wall or a door that’s a little tough to open may not seem like a big deal, but structural damage is a serious issue that shouldn’t be taken lightly. This means the foundation can no longer support your home. With a weak foundation, your home would collapse. Not only is it expensive to repair, it is also extremely dangerous.

Water damage is one of the most common causes of structural damage. If left unaddressed, it can create the perfect environment for mold growth and can eventually weaken your home’s foundation. Avoid permanent damage to your home by taking corrective action right away.

Lead

Lead-based paint was used in many homes from 1922 to mid-70s. It was added to paint to resist moisture, maintain a fresh appearance, and accelerate drying. Later on, they found out about the health risks associated with lead. As such, the federal government banned the use of lead-based paint in 1978. If your house was built before 1978, there is a good chance that there is lead in your home.

Most old homes still have lead paint in them, which is a major health hazard. Lead is a highly toxic metal that can be harmful to people of any age. People can be exposed to lead through ingestion of lead-contaminated food, water or dust. Young children are more susceptible to lead toxicity because they tend to put different things in their mouth. Another route is through inhalation of lead particles. Once it’s in a person’s bloodstream, it can affect multiple body systems.

Lead does not present a health hazard as long as it is not flaking or chipping. To reduce the risk of lead poisoning, be sure to keep all paint in excellent condition and clean up paint chips safely. Also, families living in older homes should have their house tested to confirm the presence or absence of lead in your home.  

Radon

Radon is a natural by-product that is produced during the breakdown of radioactive elements such as uranium. Just like carbon monoxide, radon is an odorless, colorless gas that can be detrimental to one’s health. The gas is carcinogenic. Breathing in radon, especially over a long period of time, increases your risk of developing lung cancer. Studies suggest that radon is the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers and the second leading cause of lung cancer among smokers.

According to studies, 1 out of 15 homes in the United States have high radon levels. It usually occurs in the outdoor air in small amounts that it isn’t considered as a health risk. Radon can enter your home through cracks in the walls, floors or basement drain and gets trapped inside. In some cases, it can build up to an unsafe level. When this happens, it can become an indoor air hazard for your family. But the problem is that, most homeowners aren’t even aware that there is radon gas in their home until it’s too late.

Since radon is odorless and colorless, the only way to determine the presence of radon in your home is through testing. You can either do the test on your own or hire a professional to do it for you. It doesn’t cost that much either. Have your home tested for radon. It can save the lives of you and your loved ones.