Your attic is among the ideal areas in your home for mold to thrive. It’s usually poorly lit and warm. Moreover, it has little to no air circulation. These are favorable conditions for mold growth. Thus, it’s not uncommon to find the dreaded discolored streaks and patches on the wooden trusses and interior gable walls.
Tips To Prevent Mold In Attic Spaces
Fortunately, there are many ways to prevent mold from growing in your attic. Waiting until it spreads extensively isn’t wise as you may spend a lot of money on mold removal. Also, you may compromise your family’s health, especially if you have allergic members. With that in mind, consider these five mold prevention tips for your attic:
Place A Dehumidifier In The Attic
Dehumidifiers suck in the air lingering within the attic, get rid of the moisture content, and blow the dry air back. This device frees the attic spaces of moisture. Since mold thrives in damp areas, it’d be challenging for any spore to multiply in such a dry environment.
When purchasing a dehumidifier, look out for the following features:
Pint capacity – The amount of moisture in pints that the devices can extract
Programmable humidistat – For measuring relative humidity
The low-temperature operation – Since attic spaces can sometimes get very cold
Auto-restart – Ensures the device turns on automatically after power failure
Caster Wheels – For easy portability around the house
Low noise levels – ideally below 50 decibels
Automatic shut-off – Prevents overflow once the water tank fills up
Washable filters – Eliminates the need for expensive filter replacements now and then
The whole idea behind mold prevention is to starve them of favorable conditions. As mentioned earlier, mold flourishes in moist environments. Thus, you should aim to make the attic spaces as dry as possible.
Crevices on your roofing sheet may let in dozens of liters of water in a given rainy season. So, you’d want to inspect your roof regularly for any leaks. Seal any holes with an appropriate roof sealant to prevent rainwater from entering the attic. Also, repair any other defects such as a clogged gutter or faulty adjustments on the roof. If the leaks are widespread, you can consider replacing entire roofing sheets or shingles.
Ventilate The Attic
Another tactic is to keep the air in the attic flowing. Leaving it stagnant, as is the norm, encourages mold growth. To this end, make a point of installing attic vents.
There are two primary types of attic vents:
Intake vents: These are usually installed at the lowest part of the roof to allow cool air to get into the attic space.
Hot air exhaust events: These are placed at the roof’s peak to provide a point of escape for hot rising air.
By installing these two, you’re able to ventilate the attic passively. That is, taking advantage of the natural principle of ventilation involving the exchange of cool and warm air.
Remove Excess Clutter
Perhaps you’re among those who pile stuff in the attic to take advantage of the ample storage space. However, the clutter compromises the effectiveness of ventilation in that it impedes the free flow of air around the attic space. The resulting stagnant conditions encourage mold growth.
Also, the wood, paper, and clothes you stack up there are perfect surfaces for mold growth. Meaning attic clutter worsens the mold problem. Therefore, you could get rid of everything you’re not using presently. Consider throwing away the damaged items and donating those in good shape. Your attic can remain spacious and with proper airflow, which is a sure-fire way to prevent mold growth.
Vent Appliances Away From The Attic
Moisture comes from several sources within your home, including cloth dryers, hot shower heads, dishwashers, cooking food in the kitchen without lids, and the bathroom. If not directed correctly, the moisture might end up in the attic and speed up mold growth.
Therefore, ensure you blow the moist air from such appliances to the outside. Otherwise, you may be doing a futile job by ventilating the attic and using dehumidifiers while at the same time driving in enormous volumes of moist air.
Mold growth in the attic isn’t the best sight you’d want to behold in your beautiful home. Not only is it unappealing, but it can also make you sick and compromise the structural integrity of your roofing materials.
So, it’s advisable to take preventive measures before the damage is beyond repair. Most preventative methods involve reducing the humidity levels in the attic space and encouraging free air circulation to deny mold its favorable conditions for growth. Implement the five tips outlined herein and start your journey to a mold-free attic.
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