Dealing with water damage, mold and mildew in cases such as mildewed grout, moldy drywall, or a flooded basement can be extremely frustrating. When it gets into unwanted places, water can cause plenty of damage. It attacks the structural integrity of the house and ruins your prized possessions. What’s more, the dampness causes mold and mildew, and these lead to further problems. How to minimize water damage and get rid of mold and mildew? Here are a couple of tips that will help you with handling the situation.
Prevention is The Key
Coming home to a plumbing catastrophe is a nightmare of every homeowner. The best way to deal with something like this is to prevent it from occurring in the first place. Whenever you’re leaving the house for an extended time, shut off the primary water valve. Use frost-proof outdoor faucets. Buy and install no-burst stainless steel hoses for toilets and washing machines. Taking precautions such as these can go a long way when it comes to preventing water damage.
In the case of a flooded basement, everyone’s first instinct is to save their belongings. However, doing something like that can be extremely dangerous. As you already know, the combination of water and electricity is lethal. For that matter, don’t act rashly. Do not step into the water until an electrician turns off your basement’s power supply. Another important thing to mention here is that floodwaters often contain toxic chemicals. These breed harmful bacteria. Therefore, make sure to protect your open sores and cuts when moving through the floodwater or handling your belongings.
Never Delay the Cleanup
The longer you delay the cleanup, the more likely you are to suffer permanent damage. What’s more, letting things stay wet for too long will cause mold to appear. This leads to further problems whose fixing will require even more money. Insurance can help with the costs, but ideally you want to prevent getting to that point. So, make sure to clean up the mess first and only then think of buying plumbing parts. If you can’t handle flood damage restoration on your own, consider hiring a team of experts to do it for you. This can save you both time and money in the long run.
Use a Squeegee Every Time You Take a Shower
Every time you’re finished with taking a shower or a bath, use a squeegee. With it, you can take the water off the walls of your shower cabin. By doing this, you will eliminate more than half of moisture that can cause mildew and mold growth.
Prevent Mold by Controlling Indoor Moisture
To stop mold and mildew, one needs to control the dampness. Where do the worst kinds of infestations typically occur? You guessed it right – in places with excessive dampness. These include damp crawlspaces, basements with poor foundation drainage, as well as leaky attics and walls. The best defenses include routing water away from the foundation, keeping crawlspaces dry, and ensuring proper ventilation in attics.
Immediately Clean any Visible Mold
If the surface is damp, mold will grow on it – it’s as simple as that. One of the most favorite places of this dangerous fungus is the grout lines between the ceramic tiles in your bathroom. Visible mold appearing at such places needs to be cleaned immediately. To exterminate it, scrub with water and detergent. Once you’re done, let the surface dry completely. Another effective way to do this is to use a 90% water / 10 % bleach solution. Keep in mind that a stronger bleach solution won’t really make any difference. Brush or spray on the 90/10 solution, leave it sitting for 15 minutes, rinse it off, and leave it to dry.
Use Paint with Mildewcide
When it’s present in paint, mildewcide is very efficient when it comes to eradicating surface mold. It is particularly useful in shady areas outdoors, as well as in damp rooms such as bathrooms. Many types of paint come with mildewcide in them. To be sure, consult your paint dealer.
Ensure Your Bath Fan is Large Enough
When it comes to preventing mold after water damage, an important thing to consider is the size of the bath fan. Can your fan successfully clean out the moisture after 10 minutes of working? If it can’t, it probably isn’t large enough. These appliances are certified by the volume of air removed from a particular room. How to determine the right fan capacity for your bathroom? The math is simple – just multiply the square footage of your bathroom by 1.1. Have a look at your bath fan and check its CFM volume. The label should be somewhere under the grating. If it’s too small for your bathroom, make sure to replace it with a bigger model.
Consider Smart Humidity Sensors and Bathroom Timers
Excess humidity is the fear of every homeowner. It can cause a plethora of bad things – from window condensation to rot inside your walls. This is precisely why the bath fan timers are so important. The newest wall-switch models feature dual controls. These allow one to turn off both the fans and lights after a desired amount of time. If you want the smartest bath fan timers available, consider buying a humidity-sensing fan. This kind of appliance can detect the current moisture level and automatically turn the fan on or off.
In Case of Leaks, Act Quickly
When it comes to preventing mold after water damage, it’s very important to act ASAP in case of leaks. A serious plumbing leak is capable of letting several gallons of water per minute into your house. To stop this dangerous stream, one needs to act immediately. The most obvious move would be to quickly shut off the primary water valve. However, there could still be some water left in the pipes above the leak. Take care of this by turning on the lowest faucet in your home. By doing so, the water will leak out of the faucet instead of leaking through the broken pipe. Water damage is not a joke. Besides damaging your walls and possessions, it causes mold and mildew, which can be even more dangerous.
Hopefully, the tips mentioned above on water damage, mold and mildew will help you alleviate the damage in an efficient and responsible manner. Good luck! Kevin has gone through an extensive home renovation with his son, which he has both thoroughly enjoyed, and dreaded every morning. He is now the proud owner of half his dream house (the other half has been waiting for spring). You can read more of Kevin’s work on PlainHelp.