Updated: May 21
How to prevent mould from growing on walls
The most common causes of mould growing on walls include:
· High humidity
· Water leaks
Moreover, we can also thank:
· Dust, dirt, & poor maintenance
· Inadequate ventilation
· Compromises in insulation
· An incorrect dew point
We explained humidity in our previous post, so it is time to devote a word or two to the other most common mould causes.
Condensation forms when water vapor in the air (the result of cooking or indoor clothes drying) meets cold surface (walls, windows…) and cools to become liquid. With enough moisture and an organic food source, you can see mould developing on your walls. The same goes for water leaks – leaking pipes near or inside the wall can lead to excess moisture, which in turn will cause mould to grow.
Identify the possible mould cause
In order to prevent mould from growing on your walls, it is important to think ahead. If mould grows because of excess liquid, then checking all pipes is something to start with. The actual mould prevention process can be as simple as checking and installing mould-resistant products or it may include waterproofing and roof fixing.
Whatever the problem is, the sooner it is discovered, the easier it will be to repair it. Both repairing and preventing steps can cost you some money today, but in the long run, it will surely be more costly if you let mould grow.
Dry wet walls immediately
Mould needs moisture to grow and the best way to prevent this from happening is to cut the liquid source from them. As soon as a pipe or roof leaks, wet materials, especially drywall which is high in cellulose, should be removed and replaced. If the leak is small and has access to fresh air (including sunlight too), you can let it dry out on its own by simply leaving the window open.
On the other hand, if you have problems with basement walls or with a lot of liquid (such as flood), the smartest move is to call professionals to dry out your walls quickly before they become home to mould. Timing is essential; thus, it is important to act as soon as the problem occurs.
Prevent mould with proper ventilation
Daily routines such as breathing, cooking, drying clothes and showering result in excess hot air in your home. When combined with cold walls – well, you know the result.
It is not expected from you to stop breathing or taking a shower, but what you can do is make sure that proper ventilation is installed in key rooms such as bathroom, laundry room and kitchen. If the weather allows you, open the windows every time you cook, take a shower or wash/dry your clothes. Moreover, you can also dry your clothes outside if the weather permits.
Check the humidity level regularly
The ideal humidity level in the house should be between 30% and 50%. A high level of humidity leads to excess moisture, which creates the perfect conditions for mould to develop. You can check the humidity level by yourself (e.g. pay attention to the signs of condensation) or you can ask professionals to check it for you.
In case your humidity level is high, professionals can immediately check for mould spores and even mould signs. In addition, mould removal experts will advise you on proper dehumidifiers and any additional steps needed to remove mould from your home.
How to prevent mould and mildew on windows
Mould on windows is often the result of condensation. It starts by growing at the bottom of the windows, where the glass meets the window frame, but it can also grow around window frames.
The main problem with mildew growing on windows is that people sometimes do not even notice they have it. Since mould is often darker, it is a lot easier to spot it than mildew. Even though mould typically doesn’t feed on windows themselves, it can easily destroy wooden frames of your windows.
Since mildew is more often seen on windows than mould, it is very important to get the discoloration tested out to determine what you are dealing with. Together with a mould or mildew test, mould experts will inform you about the best way to treat the problem you are dealing with in order to prevent its further growth.
Both mildew and mould on windows are the result of condensation; thus, to prevent mould, it is very important to stop the condensation itself from happening.
First things first, in both mildew and mould prevention processes, it is important to regularly ventilate your rooms. If the weather permits, keep your windows open to let fresh air dry the window frames. Pay special attention to kitchen and bathroom windows as steam can be one of the mildew and mould triggers.
Another thing you can do to prevent mould and mildew on your windows is set your air conditioning thermostats above 21 C. Keep the ceiling vents open all the time to maintain proper indoor airflow and try to reduce the amount of time you dry your clothes indoors.
The influence of dust on mildew and mould growth is often overlooked. It is essential to regularly clean your home’s interior, especially window frames, to prevent mould and mildew from finding additional food sources of their growth.
If you are having problems with condensation, you can simply wipe down your windows and frames each morning since the difference between outdoors and indoors is the highest at night. If it is too cold for you to leave the windows open, you can induce airflow by opening two or more windows at the same time. In just 10 minutes, your indoor air will be fresh and your windows dry.