There are a lot of issues homeowners must tend to after a major flood or storm. Structural concerns, insurance claims, and the health of their family to name a few. Water damage to your home presents many challenges that include the growth of mold. If not taken care of immediately it can spread throughout your home.
Water Damage, Then Mold
Mold is a type of fungus that consists of tiny lightweight spores that travel through the air. Mold grows in humid, damp and dimly-lit areas like attics, basements, and bathrooms. It can also be found in areas where there is a leak in the roof, windows, or pipes.
Moist areas provide the perfect breeding ground for mold spores. Mold appears after water damage because of the high level of moisture that is present. When the furniture, carpets and other materials absorb the water, mold will begin to grow on them. Mold can then spread throughout your home within a matter of hours via air ducts or doorways.
Other Causes of Moisture
Floods and storms aren’t the only causes of moist environments where mold can grow. Others include:
HumidityHumidity is the primary cause of mold on walls. If you live in a humid area, an easy solution is to purchase a dehumidifier and move it to different rooms regularly. Clean behind your laundry machines regularly, open the windows when you shower in the bathroom or wash dishes in the kitchen, and keep your home well-ventilated.
CondensationCondensation occurs naturally on the perimeter walls of your home, which are often cooler than the air inside your house. As a result, the water in the air can experience a temperature drop and undergo a change of state to become liquid. Inspect any outside walls of your house regularly to prevent moisture buildup.
Water LeaksThe third most common cause of mold in residential homes is water leaking. If your pipes drip, water is likely making its way into the framework of your house every time you turn on the tap.
As this moisture builds up over time, it becomes a potent hotbed for all kinds of bacteria, and mold becomes inevitable. Check your pipes frequently, and make sure that you take steps to keep them from leaking when the temperature in your area changes.
5 Ways to Help Prevent Mold Growth
Mold can grow after water damage within 48 hours. It doesn’t take much water for mold to grow. All it needs is a little moisture and a dark space. The sooner you start cleaning up after water damage, the sooner you can stop mold from growing The best way to keep mold from spreading is to act fast when you know water is present.
Follow these steps for a mold-free home.
- Remove Water Immediately
Use a wet/dry vacuum to clean up as much water as soon as possible. These machines are the most effective tools for removing water. Also locate the source of water and moisture and handle needed repairs quickly.
- Turn on the Fans
It can take several days for fans to completely dry a water-damaged area. Keep the fans on for at least a week. This also helps to circulate fresh air. Don’t forget to open the windows, if possible.
Dehumidifiers remove excess moisture, which makes the air feel cooler and limits mold and mildew growth.
- Check Furniture and Flooring
Look for water damage and remove furniture from wet flooring. Remove damaged materials, furniture, and carpet if they can’t be cleaned or restored. You can always replace these items once your home is back to normal.
- Sanitize and Clean
All items affected by floodwater should be sanitized. Clean all walls, hard-surface floors and other household surfaces with soap and water. Sanitize and deodorize all carpets by having them steam cleaned.
After cleaning and drying, continue to be sensitive to musty odors. Keeping things dry is the key to preventing mold growth.
The best way to stop mold growth after water damage is by hiring a professional water damage and mold remediation company. St. Louis Cleaning and Restoration is your local expert on removing and preventing mold. We offer water damage restoration, mold remediation, and inspection services. Our team of professionals uses advanced restoration and cleaning equipment to remove water and unsightly mold.
If you’re dealing with flooding from a major storm or a burst pipe behind a wall, contact St. Louis Cleaning & Restoration immediately. After locating the source of the problem, we can begin the process of getting your home and life back to normal. Call us today for all your restoration and cleaning needs.