10 Ways To Keep Your Home Healthy & Mold-Free
Hi everyone! Chelsea invited me to write this guest post after my appearance on Episode 18 of the Christian Health Club podcast: Why Hidden Mold Is Wrecking Your Health. I know mold can seem like a lot of doom and gloom, but it doesn’t have to be. Let’s empower ourselves with .knowledge so we can treat problems and prevent them well.
One caveat- the tips I am about to share will NOT be effective in a space that is already moldy. Your home must get a “clean bill of health” from a mold inspector who does testing OR undergo a full remediation protocol as outlined by them. However, these tips are worth their weight in gold. Preventing a mold problem is much, much easier than treating one.
Without further ado, these are the strategies that I use as mold prevention in my home!
MY TOP TEN MOLD PREVENTION STRATEGIES
1. Use HomeBiotic by Dave Asprey. This is a probiotic spray that helps keep the small amount of mold spores that naturally settle on surfaces in check. I spray this in my car, especially the air vents, and on fabric/porous surfaces throughout my home.
2. Air purifier- I have an Austin Air (HEPA filter) but after researching the topic more, I think that there are 2 options that work better as they destroy the particles rather than just filtering them out. With a HEPA filter, the potential that you can cross contaminate a clean space with trapped mold spores and mycotoxins is higher. I’ve heard good things about both these brands but haven’t tried either.
3. Use MERV-11 (commercial grade) air filters instead of other filters to trap particles and change them out whenever visibly dirty (more often than recommended- usually every 2 months in my house).
4. Use a dehumidifier. You want to try to keep house humidity at 45% or below- which can be a real challenge in the summer. I use a Haier brand dehumidifier that I purchased at Lowe’s several years ago- works like a charm.
5. Keep a cheap plastic bin under the pipes of your sink. Then if you see water, you can take action and fix the leak before it damages. You won’t get water on all your stuff and potentially damage the floor. Win-win!
6. Dust surfaces frequently with a grippy option, such as a Swiffer cloth. Mold spores settle into dust more easily so removing dust as much as possible is very important.
7. Put the exhaust fan on in your bathroom before you use the shower or bathtub and keep it on for at least 1 hour post. I usually leave mine on for several hours if not overnight.
They now sell exhaust fans that are automated and turn off when the humidity in the bathroom drops to an acceptable level. I would go this route if you are building a house or doing a bathroom remodel!
8. Treat any water leak within 24 hours of initiation- call a plumber ASAP and get a professional drying machine to dry it out. Personally, I would also call a mold inspector to take a look and ensure you’re doing everything you can to prevent a mold problem. After 24 hours + mold begins to grow and then it could require remediation.
9. See something, say something- if you find an issue (water stain on the ceiling, cracked baseboard, etc.), it’s better to treat it now than later. The problem will not resolve itself if you ignore it.
10. Front-loading washers are notorious for mold growth on the rubber gasket inside the washer.
If you have an option (i.e. building a house or replacing), get a top-loading washer.
If you already have a front loader and it has mildew in it, go ahead and get the inner ring replaced. Because this can be contaminating all your clothes.
Keep the door open because mold actually grows best when the washer is airtight (door is closed)
Use an antimicrobial cleaner (I use EC3) to clean out the inner gasket after each load of laundry. This helps prevent soap scum and mildew buildup. I use a paper towel for this and gloves.
I hope this information was helpful to you. Please comment with any questions below!