Mould is a type of fungus and it’s found in many places around the world. In general, mould simply needs somewhere dark and damp, this will allow it to flourish. Of course, there are probably several places in your home that are like this, encouraging mould to grow.
Unfortunately, mould spores can be dangerous to your health, especially if you already suffer from allergies. That’s why you need to do everything you can to eliminate it.
Check For Leaks
Mould needs moisture to flourish. That means your first line of defence is to check for moisture in your home. It can come through walls that are not properly sealed. Take a look at the outside of your home and make sure the walls are in good condition and sealed with paint or a specifically designed sealant.
Inside your home, you’ll want to look for any signs of leaking plumbing. The best way to do this is to look at all the walls, floors and ceilings to see if there are any visible damp patches.
You can also take a meter reading and then avoid using any water for an hour or two. Take another meter reading, if it’s changed you have a leak somewhere.
Leaks will generally end up on the floor or in the walls, this allows them to penetrate your wood, making it harder to spot them and creating the moisture mould needs.
In short, if you find a leak, fix it as quickly as possible.
One place that is difficult to check is under your floor. This is generally referred to as the subfloor and is the small space below your ground floor and above the earth. The space is there for a reason.
All earth contains moisture, if the house was directly on the earth it would be very easy for it to suck the moisture out of the earth, giving you an array of issues including mould.
Lift the house and you reduce the issue. But, the moisture still leaves the soil and enters the air. The warmer the air the higher the moisture content and the more likely it is you’ll have mould in your subfloor.
This probably is generally much worse in the summer months when the air is very warm and can carry a lot of moisture.
You need to remove the moisture from the air to protect your home and prevent mould. The simplest way to do this is with subfloor ventilation.
In essence, subfloor ventilation will create two holes under your floor, allowing air to enter and exit. While you can rely on natural airflow, most systems have a one-way valve that only allows air out and a fan that sucks air into the space. As the air is sucked in it is pushed out the valve. This system can be the other way around with the valve allowing air in and the fan pushing it out.
The fan is best to run at night when the air is coolest, reducing the moisture content under your floor and preventing mould from forming.