Posts made in December 2017

The Dangers of Mold

Regardless of whether you live in an older home or a new construction, mold can be present. While mold has nothing to do with the age of your home, it also doesn’t have any bearing on how clean and tidy it is. Mold grows undeterred of these circumstances.

Many factors contribute to the mold growth in your basement that’s causing that nasty, musty smell. Cracked foundation walls, water seepage from windows, poor circulation and high humidity are just some of the leading causes of mold growth. However, mold is more than just a nuisance, it’s a real health concern that we mention often. Understanding the potential dangers of mold and the best ways to deal with the fungus will help you provide a healthy environment for your family.

What is Mold?
Mold is a fungus that grows from microscopic spores that float in the air. Mold needs a dark, damp surface and dust to grow. The most common indoor molds are cladosporium, aspergillus, penecillium and alternaria, which are some of the least harmful types. Stachybotrys chartarum, or black mold, can cause serious health problems.

Health Dangers
People who are sensitive to mold spores can develop allergy symptoms, such as eye irritation, congestion, wheezing, asthma or skin rashes. Reactions become more intense as mold exposure continues. Black mold spores and toxins can cause invasive lung disease and recurrent sinusitis for some. This is a serious risk for people with compromised immune systems.

Prevention
If you do not yet have a mold problem in your basement, take measures to prevent it. Keep humidity levels at or below 55 percent, use a dehumidifier to lower humidity levels, and consider installing an air purifier to remove dust particles and mold spores from the air. You’ll also want to have a professional sump pump service in Illinois evaluate your basement’s condition and suggest other solutions, such as a sump pump or cracked foundation repair services, which will eliminate any unwanted water problems.

How to Prevent Mold When Finishing Your Basement

Basement mold is a common problem in homes just like yours all across the country. By way of being a dark, enclosed space with little-to-no natural light, plus poor air circulation, the fungus that is mold can grow fast and get out of control quickly. Because of this, the conditions in the basement can’t be compared to conditions in other rooms.

However, that doesn’t mean your basement is destined to be a useless space that you avoid. Convert your basement into a usable, mold-free, livable area by taking extra precautions to prevent mold infestation.

  1. Apply a vapor barrier
    Concrete and other foundation flooring materials are not 100% waterproof. They are porous materials that can allow water to penetrate into the basement, which is why it’s crucial to install a vapor barrier. This will prevent water from finding its way into the basement and evaporating into the air where it can cause an increase in indoor humidity.
  2. Apply waterproof coating
    Finished walls and floors are particularly vulnerable to water damage, so it’s a wise investment to add a waterproof barrier between the surface of the foundation and the finishing. This will keep your wall finishing’s (drywall, paneling, etc.) safe from any water damage.
  1. Install a waterproofing system
    While you may never need basement waterproofing in Cook County, IL, it’s best to err on the side of caution and install one while you’re in the construction phase. This way, should your basement take on water in the future, a sump pump or other type of basement waterproofing system will kick into action immediately and reduce the risk of damage to your investment.