Homeowners, Protect Your Investment from Mold

It is important to protect what for many people is their most significant investment: their home. And one way to do that is to keep mold at bay.

Research shows that if you keep moisture out of your home, you will likely avoid mold. In the presence of moisture, mold will grow on virtually any surface—steel, plastic, and even fiberglass. Areas of your home that are continually wet—like the insides of walls or attics and basements, often out of view—will eventually lead to expensive repairs. Here are some tips to protect your home from moisture:

  • Run bathroom and kitchen vents for an extra 10 minutes after you finish showering or cooking. Also, make sure your vents go outdoors. If they vent into the attic, you’re not getting rid of the moisture.

  • The grade around your home should slope away from the foundation. Houses will settle as they age, creating a drainage problem. If the ground around your home slopes inward, which may or may not be visible, it provides a pathway for moisture to enter your basement.

  • Make sure sprinklers are pointed away from the home. Over time, sprinklers that are directed toward your house will allow thousands of gallons of water to penetrate the walls.

  • Check the caulking around doors and windows. If it is cracked or falling apart, water can seep into your walls.

  • Replace washing machine hoses every five years. This is the single largest category of water-related claims filed with insurance companies each year.

Whether you’re building, remodeling, or maintaining your home, be a “water detective.” If you see water or dampness, find out where it’s coming from, stop it, and repair or replace any materials that have been damaged.

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