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Here's some info.


Posted by Wick on March 2nd, 2000 12:10 PM
In reply to homemade humidity control by jim felder on March 2nd, 2000 11:50 AM [Go to top of thread]

1 of 1 people found this post helpful

Hi Jim, here's a quote from the Home Doctor website (http://homedoctor.net).

Methods of controlling mold growth and
removing it from your home and your office

If you're allergic to mold, there is a good chance that you could also be allergic to pollens
and dust, as well as some foods. If you can reduce the amount of mold in your home or
office you will also reduce the extent that other allergens effect you. Allergens cause your
body to create IgE (Immunoglobin E) and histamines, which in turn causes you to sneeze,
have a stuffy nose, sinus, excess mucous, night drainage which causes you to cough the
next morning, and so on.

The cumulative effect of IgE and histamines causes other things, which might not bother
you at other times, to add to your allergic reaction and sensitivity to them. It's like a
snowball rolling downhill . . . it get's bigger, and bigger, and bigger.

The most important step you can take in getting relief from your mold allergy is to reduce
your exposure to mold. Since you spend 1/4 to 1/3 of your life in your bedroom, you should
start in this room first. Other rooms that you should work on that are "breeding grounds" for
mold are your bathroom and your kitchen. If you have a basement, it needs some attention,
too.

Mold grows rapidly in dark and damp areas when the temperature is above freezing and
below 90 or 100 degrees. Room temperature is ideal. Mold spores travel in the air so that
more mold can grow. To get rid of, or slow the growth of, mold you have to change the
conditions in your home to slow it's growth and to kill it.

Reduce Humidity in Your Home . . .

You can eliminate dampness in your home by reducing the amount of humidity. Here is a list
of things you can do to reduce the humidity in your home:

Get a high-efficiency exhaust fan for your bathroom. Most exhaust fans are very
noisy and inefficient--they don't exhaust very much air. Replace it with a
high-volume exhaust fan that moves a lot of air. Most use a rotary blower instead of
a fan blade and are quite, too. The cost of this kind of exhaust fan is $50 to $100,
depending on the amount of air it moves.
Make sure your clothes dryer is vented outdoors. Check the vent tube or pipe for
leaks. After using your washing machine, leave the lid open to let it dry out.
Check your range hood in the kitchen. If it doesn't vent outdoors, consider replacing
it with one that does. A good range hood that vents outdoors will cost about $100
plus installation.
When cooking, if you use a lid, you reduce the amount of steam released and won't
need as high of burner setting
Purchase a de-humidifier for your basement and other areas where there is dampness
in your home.
When using air conditioning in the spring and fall, don't open windows and doors
on the occasional cool days or nights to save money. The amount of humitity that
enters will cause mold to grow. Often, the extra humidity will cause your air
conditioner to work harder and end up costing as much or more than if you had not
opened windows and doors.
Check under your sinks and under-sink cabinets to make sure there are no leaks.
Insulate cold water pipes in the basement and under-sink cabinets so that
condensation doesn't collect.
Don't use a humidifier at all in your home.

Reduce Mold Breeding Grounds . . .

There are several places in your home that invite the growth of mold. Here is a list of things
you can do to eliminate them:

Replace your kitchen trash can with a small one and use a trash bag. Empty it after
every meal preparation.
Piles of leaves, and other debris, in your yard should be removed.
Grass clippings, after mowing your lawn, should be removed immediately after
cutting, or use a mower that has a "grass catcher."

Kill Mold . . .

There are several ways that you can kill mold in your home or office. Some require the use of
cleaning solutions, ventilation, air cleaners, and UV light. Here is a list of ways to kill mold:

Clean your bathroom, tub/shower, and walls reqularly. There are many commercial
cleaning solutions that kill mold. You can make your own using 1/4 cup of clorine
bleach per gallon of hot water and a small amount of laundry detergent. Most
laundry detergents work well with clorine bleach. Read the label to make sure it is
compatible with bleach--some laundry detergents and many household cleaners
react with bleach and release clorine gas. Vinegar also works well. Any cleaner that
will kill germs will also kill mold.
Clean inside under-sink cabinets using similar cleaner for your bathroom.
If you have a basement, clean the walls and floor regularly. There are many
commercial cleaning solutions that kill mold. You can make your own using 1/4 cup
of bleach per gallon of hot water and a small amount of laundry detergent. Read the
label to make sure it is compatible with bleach--some laundry detergents and many
household cleaners react with bleach and release clorine gas. Muratic acid also
works well, and makes the concrete look much nicer. It is sold in hardware stores and
is often used in preparing concrete before painting. You can connect a garden hose
to your hot water heater's drain faucet and rinse with hot water [be careful you don't
get burned by the hose, sprayer, or hot water spray].
Use an anti-bacterial and/or mold killing spray such as LysolŪ in your bathroom,
bedroom, kitchen, and basement. Be sure to "wet the surface" with the spray to get
maximum effect and do this daily. Remember to spray in the clothes hamper, too.
Get a UV light. Your local hardware or lighting store might have it in stock or they
can order it for you. General Electric makes one to fit in an 18" single bulb
fluorsecent fixture. GE calls it a "germicidal lamp" and the stock number is G15T8. It
doesn't put out much light to "see by" but the UV (ultraviolet) light will kill mold and
other bacteria. These are often used in "clean rooms" and in hospitals to kill germs
and viruses. Average cost is about $40 per bulb plus the cost of a lamp fixture. Put
one in your bedroom and one or more in your basement. Don't look at the light for
extended periods because UV is not good for your eyes (sunlamps work well, too,
but use a lot more electricity and produce a lot of heat).
Replace your furnace filters with HEPA filters. Besides trapping some mold, it filters
out a lot more dirt. You should replace them once a month during months that it runs
a lot; check it monthly when not used as often.
Purchase an electronic or a HEPA air cleaner. The good ones will handle a single
room and remove particles as small as .5 microns, including mold, dust, smoke, etc.
Small and often less than adequate ones cost about $100 while better ones cost $200
or more. The model you choose should be able to recirculate the air 5 to 8 times per
hour (air changes per hour)

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