If you’re a homeowner, you’re probably aware that mold can encroach on various aspects of your home and cause problems over time. The basement is a common place to look for signs of mold, as is the bathroom and kitchen. Any location with a high level of humidity or water usage can be trouble if you don’t have a solid mold prevention strategy in place.
But even discerning homeowners—people who regularly check their homes for signs of mold—often overlook one key location: The attic. These overhead spaces are magnets for heat and humidity during warmer months, and they often create ideal conditions for mold to grow. What’s more, they often end up as storage areas for stacks of paper, old furniture, and other materials on which mold can grow easily. It might seem like mold in the attic would be relatively harmless, but a mold colony with a strong foothold in the attic is likely to spread into other areas of the house. Even if it doesn’t, mold spores can find their way into your heating and ventilation systems, affecting the air quality throughout your home.
So how do you protect your attic against mold growth?
The first step is to check the attic regularly, and to identify the mold risks unique to your particular location and home design. A mold prevention specialist can be of help, and will often visit your location free of charge or for a nominal fee. One of the reasons why mold tends to grow in attics is because homeowners seldom visit this area of the home. Mold prefers to be left alone for long periods of time in order to flourish, and many homeowners get a nasty surprise when they finally do ascend to the attic.
A good thorough cleaning is another way to keep attic mold in check. Your attic may contain boxes and bins that haven’t been opened in years. Cardboard is particularly susceptible to mold growth, and dark cluttered areas often attract mold. Cutting the clutter and subjecting your attic to routine cleanings can drastically decrease your chances of being invaded by mold.
Many homeowners find mold in the attic and think that if they clean off the visible mold, the problem will be solved. This is a mistake. Nine times out of ten, mold-infested paper and cardboard need to be thrown away in order to remove the threat of mold. Moldy keepsakes can be a challenge; they drastically increase chances of mold showing up in other areas of the home, yet people don’t want to throw these items away due to their sentimental value.
Ventilation problems, poor-quality insulation and/or siding, and other structural concerns can lead to mold growth as well. A mold remediation professional will be able to determine exactly why mold is growing in your attic, and what you can do to stop this nuisance from recurring.
Maintaining a mold-free attic
Keep your attic mold-free by cleaning, de-cluttering, and making sure the space is tightly sealed against the elements. If you do notice mold in your attic, you may want to seek the assistance of a mold removal specialist who can deal with the problem thoroughly and give you important advice on how to keep your attic free from mold in the future.
Good luck in your mold prevention efforts, and please feel free to comment!