Reasons for Mold Growth and Prevention Tips

Nov 6, 2016

Categories: Crawl Spaces

Although we don’t find too many basements in South Carolina, there are still plenty of places that mold can spawn. We certainly have the humidity necessary for mold to flourish.  Mold needs very little to survive and replicate. Because only moisture, food, and the correct temperature is needed for mold to grow, it is a wonder that we don’t see more mold damage in the Lowcountry. Below we’ll address some of the most common causes of mold formation and some tips for preventing mold damage before it’s too late.

What Causes Mold Growth?

Perhaps the most obvious cause of mold damage in a home is standing water. Water that pools and is left for more than a couple of days will begin to form mold rapidly.  Standing water damage can be caused by drainage or plumbing issues, flooding, or countless other random moments, like a water bed popping or your four-year-old deciding that bringing the hose into the house is a good idea.  If the water is in an area that somewhat hidden or difficult to access, it may be difficult to know that the mold is even present for quite a while.

Moisture can enter your home through your crawl space vents as well, cooling down when it settles under your house, increasing the humidity levels in your crawl space.  Add a little bit of heat and you create a mini-atmosphere under your home.  Similar to Earth’s atmosphere, albeit on a much smaller scale, the moisture trapped under the home will dampen the earth initially, and then evaporate and repeat the process.  Heavy rains can dampen the soil beneath a home and cause a similar cycle to begin.

No one wants to have mold growing in their house, because in addition to mold being pretty gross in general, there are a multitude of health risks associated with inhaling mold spores.  The health problems caused by mold are generally associated with the respiratory system and include increased risk of a wheezing cough, throat irritation, and congestion issues.

How Can I Prevent Mold?

As mold is a risk to both your health and your home, you’ll no doubt want to prevent mold formation before it starts. Prevention of standing water is about being vigilant and inspecting areas that may be susceptible to mold formation.  Every effort should be made to keep your home’s basement or crawlspace dry, and if standing water happens to form, removing it as soon as possible and drying the area with fans.  The solution to preventing mold due to ground moisture or air entering through crawlspace vents is the same.  A complete encapsulation of the home’s crawlspace will prevent water from forming by creating a perfect seal, preventing any moisture from entering. In all cases, denying the conditions necessary for mold to survive is absolutely critical and can save time, money, and headaches.  Prevention is always better than treatment.

CNT Foundations in South Carolina, has a long history of helping homeowners in the Lowcountry protect their homes from water and mold damage. If you’re interested in crawl space encapsulation or our other techniques for mold prevention, give us a Call to
discuss what we can do for you.