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Mold causes many problems for homeowners. It’s gross to look at, and it weakens the structural integrity of your house. Mold also has dangerous allergens that cause health problems. Obviously, you need to keep mold out of your home. Here are five tips for preventing mold formation in the home.

Check the Humidity Level

The most likely cause of mold is excess moisture. You need to safeguard your home against water build-up. One of the ways to do that is by monitoring your humidity. Buy a hygrometer to measure your current humidity level. Your home should have at least 25 percent humidity but less than 40 percent during the winter. In the summer, anything less than 60 percent is fine. If your home is too humid, also buy a dehumidifier to suck some of the excess water out of the air.

Change the Air Filter

The air filter in your HVAC system serves a specific purpose. It traps mold spores, preventing them from getting into the ventilation system. When you have mold spores in your ducts, they’ll float into other rooms and add more moldy areas in your home. You can avoid this by changing your air filter regularly. If you worry that you’ve waited too long, hire a service technician to check your vents and ducts for mold. This worker will clean out your HVAC system, eliminating any mold spores.

Clean Your Shower

Your shower is one of the most likely places to get mold. It’s a common sense thing. You run water here every day. If you don’t get rid of that water, mold grows on the walls, shower curtain, and door. To avoid this issue, you must wipe down your shower after you bathe. Take a sponge, squeegee, or towel and clean the wet areas. The best practice is to do so after each shower, but that’s impractical for many people. At a minimum, try to clean your shower each week.

Clean Spills Immediately

Spills are a natural part of life, but some people are ambivalent about cleaning up afterward. The belief is that the water will dry naturally. While true, this thought process ignores the dangers of mold.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) suggests that mold grows in 24-48 hours. Yes, in as little as a day, you could have mold spores in your home. That’s why you must clean every spill in your home the instant it occurs. Similarly, if you ever have flooding issues, attack the problem immediately. Otherwise, you’ll have a mold outbreak on top of the flooding.

Open a Window

The first four tips all require a bit of effort, but this one is easy. Stale air is a problem in your home. It can increase the humidity, increasing the likelihood of mold growth. To prevent this problem, open your windows occasionally. You’ll get the stale air out of the home, and the fresh air will lower the humidity enough to stop mold from growing.

Once you have mold in your home, it’s difficult to remove. Follow the five tips listed here to stop mold problems before they even start.

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