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How to Dry Out Basements to Prevent Mold

Filed under: Mold Control — Megan Howard @ 1:29 am February 27, 2015

Basement Mold Cleaning

There are different ways your basement can become wet, and when this area gets water inside, it can ruin some of your possessions and the quality of the basement. If you are able to get rid of the water quickly and dry your items as well as the whole basement, then you will be able to save yourself from some of the headaches molds can bring. However, drying your basement is not as easy as it seems since it needs quick action on your part and a lot of disinfecting. Not drying out your basement as soon as it gets water damage would mean further headaches in the future.

Flooding is not the only cause of your basement having molds. If your basement is damp or if the area has moisture problems, then it can ruin drywall, carpeting, and framing. Even if your basement is just used for storage, if it has the high humidity or condensation, this can ruin the basement and create mold. If your basement suffered from water damage, take it seriously.

How to Dry Your Basement

Turn off the main power

Turn off the electrical power for the basement or if you want to make sure, turn off the main power of your house, especially if the wiring of the outlets are wet or moldy. Ask an electrician to check the house’s electrical system just to make sure that everything is working fine. Once the electrician has cleared your home, you can turn it on.

Open your windows and doors

Your basement needs enough air to circulate in. If your basement has windows, open them and the doors too.

Remove the water

Start removing the water that has accumulated in your basement. Even if it just a few inches of water, get rid of it right away.

Remove materials

Remove any items, such as furniture, boxes, carpets, rugs, and any other items that became wet in the basement. Start to dry these items and dispose of any items that may not be salvaged and may cause molds to grow.

Clean the basement

Use chlorine bleach by creating a solution of one-half to three fourths cup of bleach to one gallon of water. Wear rubber gloves to protect your hands and skin when using this solution. Disinfect your basement and focus on areas where the water resided. You can also wipe the walls if they became wet or damped. Make sure that you thoroughly clean the entire area. However, cleaning your basement needs more than just bleach and water since you have to scrub the areas where you think the water accumulated. Take your time disinfecting the place so that your basement will be free from any sort of contamination and bacteria.

Use fans and dehumidifiers

To allow your basement to dry fast, use fans and dehumidifier after totally disinfecting the area.

Monitor your basement

Do regular inspections on your basement and replace cracked or defective mortar of the basement. Inspect the outside drainage of the basement for water leakage.

Be safe

Wear a mask if you are sensitive to mold and mildew. The basement should be well ventilated before you work. If you think you are too sensitive to clean the basement, hire a specialist.

Keep in mind that your main goal when drying your basement is to entirely dry it. Some homeowners will focus in cleaning and drying their furniture, curtains, books, papers, clothing, and the likes, and will go back in drying the basement as soon as they are done with their possessions. However, it is important to focus on your basement first before you worry about your items. Remember that mold can grow after a day. And, the longer you make your basement wait, the worse your problems will be.

To Stop Mold Growth in the Basement

To stop the growth of possible mold in the basement make sure to:

Keep the basement clean and dry

This includes cleaning fabrics and any items that may promote mildew. You can also have the air ducts cleaned if there is any suspicion of mold or the air ducts becoming wet.

Fix possible problems

Always check for possible causes of water problems such as leaky pipes, water seepage, dirt in crawlspaces, and the likes.

Keep the basement dry

Use dehumidifiers, fans and open windows to keep the place dry, especially during the summer. Do not use fans if mold is already present. Insulate the area to avoid condensation. And, make certain that the humidity level in the house is below 40%.

Protect your family and your home by eliminating your mold problem and give them the quality air they deserve. Horizon Mold Services provides affordable and reliable service that will make you say goodbye to your mold problems. Call 1.888.162.2487 today!

 

 

 

 

8 Bugs and Pests to Watch For In The Spring

Filed under: Bug Control,Pest Control — Megan Howard @ 1:28 am February 24, 2015

As the cold weather subsides, expect that different pests will emerge. Here are some of the most common bugs and pests that are getting ready for a comeback this spring:

AntsAnts

Once spring comes, different ants will begin to emerge that may soon infest your home. Ants are beneficial when they are outside since they can compost dead vegetation. However, they can be a nuisance when they bring sand from beneath your concrete. When they enter gaps and cracks around your home, they will look for means to find food, water and shelter. It is important to take action when these ants are creating homes outdoors, or gaining entry indoors.

Cockroaches

Cockroaches hate spring outdoors because as the sun warms up, their home will be limited, as they will not have as many dark and damp places to hide. This is when they will start to find a dark and moist home. A great criterion of home for them includes damp, dark places with easy access to food and water, making your home the perfect spot for them.

Ticks

Be alert for ticks this spring since ticks will be active during this time. Ticks will be in gardens, camping sites, outdoor places, and can even be found inside homes. When the warmer months start, these ticks will start laying eggs. Eggs are already starting to hatch at this time and we may find visible adults soon. Having these ticks can be dangerous for most people because they have the potential to transmit Lyme disease after being attached to their host for 36 to 48 hours.

Termites

Termites may soon find their way indoors this spring since it is their time to swarm and create their colonies. When these termites create their colony inside a home structure, they will eat the cellulose material found in wood, which can create serious and costly damage to your home. The damage caused by these pests may even significantly reduce the property value of a home, especially if they are left unchecked and untreated.

Stinging Insects

Wasps, hornets and wild bees are considered stinging insects. Just like any other insects, these stinging insects will soon create their homes this coming spring. They will build nests on, in, and even under buildings and homes, but they normally create their nests hanging from eaves or from branches of trees. All these stinging insects provide a special role in our ecosystem and should be protected, especially in the case of the honeybee. While conservations are made for these insects, they can also create problems mostly when they create their nests in our homes, or when hornets or wasps start attacking people.

Spiders

While spiders are solitary creatures, they will soon have plenty of little ones emerging when spring arrives. The reason that your home will soon welcome spiders this coming spring is because they already entered your home last fall. If you are in search for them before the spring comes, look in your closets, attic, basement, crawl spaces, and other secluded areas where they can find for food at night.

Cluster FlyCluster Flies

Cluster flies look the same as house flies, although they are bigger and slower than flies. They also have a different life cycle than house flies. These flies usually breed during the late spring into early summer, but adult flies may appear clustering around windows during the spring warm months. They are mostly irritating to homeowners since they gather in large numbers while staying in rooms that are not commonly used.

Mosquitoes

Once the winter is gone, mosquitoes and their eggs will soon emerge. Mosquitoes are considered dangerous and are known to kill people especially if they are carrying dangerous pathogens that they can transmit to their victims. Although mosquitoes may disappear during the winter, they have already laid eggs that will hatch and survive during spring. Moisture created by spring rains and melting snow will allow these mosquitoes to thrive, thus affecting us in the process.

While it is all natural for these pests to arrive any time soon, it is necessary to keep them in control so that your home will stay protected from them. Any signs that these pests are creating infestations, make certain to ask help from a pest control specialist so that they can remove these unwanted pests for you.

Call Horizon Pest Control today to avoid these pests and bugs this spring! Go to Residential Pest Control Services and schedule an appointment with us today.

How to Determine If Your Home Has Mold

Filed under: Mold Control — Megan Howard @ 1:28 am February 20, 2015

Mold Growth

Mold plays an important role in nature since it is designed to break down organic matter from fallen leaves, dead trees, logs, branches, and so on. When mold grows indoors, it has the potential to harm those who are around it since they can inhale mold spores. It is actually difficult to find a home without mold. Most homes have molds, mostly small amounts, though. Some are able to see it, others ignore the mold, while most just do not realize it’s there.

Molds can grow easily, especially if moisture is present. The reason that most homes are susceptible to molds, is because mold spores commonly float in the air. Mold spores are invisible to the eye, but when mold spores find moisture they will be able to grow, thus creating molds.

So how will you know if your home has molds?

Strange smell

An easy way to know if your home has mold is to smell your surroundings. Molds have a distinctive smell that can spoil the air and can affect the scent on furniture, carpets, bathroom walls, etc. that have been infected.

Presence of mold

Mold spores begin to grow when they land on wet surfaces. For instance, bathrooms are one of the most common areas where mold or mildew grow because this place is constantly wet. Mold will stick to the solid surface of the bathroom wall and will continually thrive there as long as it is left alone. Other areas where molds can grow easily are in the basement and cellar. When these areas become moist it is difficult to dry out, thus leading to mold growth.

Mold symptoms

Since some molds may not be visible, some individuals may end up having some symptoms to the mold cause by the inhalation of mold spores. Some of the most common symptoms of mold growth and mold spores are asthma, itchy skin, sneezing, coughing, sore throat, runny or blocked nose. The problem with having mold symptoms is that most do not realize that they are already infected by the appearance of mold. They might just think that they are sick or they are having an allergic reaction. However, if multiple people also have the same symptoms and if the symptoms decrease when not at home, it could indicate that molds are near.

Water leaks

A leaking roof or attic caused by water damage can cause molds. Pipes are also known to cause leaks. When these places are damaged make sure to fix the problem and clean possible mold growth.

Flooding

If your basement or your home suffered from flooding, it may end up having mold growth. Even after you have cleaned your home after the flooding occurred, some places like inside wall cavities may create mold growth. When flooding happens, it is necessary to clean and dry the area right away. Not drying the area for more than 24 hours may allow an environment for creating molds.

Other reasons for mold growth includes:

  • Humidity
  • Condensation
  • Damp basement
  • Rust
  • Warping
  • Deteriorated structure caused by water damage
  • Poor ventilation
  • Standing water
  • Humidifiers

If You Have Mold Problems

If you think your home has molds, search for places where you think the molds are. Check all moist places, basements, attics, kitchen, and bathrooms. Once you have located mold growth, you can clean it yourself with the use of soap and water. Remove the mold as soon as you find it so that they cannot do further harm.