Indoor molds can be a major headache to homeowners for a variety of reasons including decreased resale value of the house, unsightly stains, and serious health concerns.
The most important reason to eliminate or prevent indoor mold is the deleterious health effects of mold.
Contrary to popular beliefs, health issues related to indoor mold are not often the primary pathology but exacerbate existing conditions such as asthma, allergies, and preexisting respiratory conditions.
However, this is not to suggest that indoor mod is not a serous health concern. In addition to compounding symptoms of conditions such as asthma, bronchitis, and respiratory illnesses, indoor molds can irritate the eyes, nose, throat, and lungs.
A person exposed to molds may show symptoms such as red and watery eyes, tightness of the chest and difficulty breathing, sneezing, coughing, and rashes.
Fortunately, mold can be prevented from forming and its growth controlled by air conditioning.
Mold forms from spores released into the air from other molds and can grow on almost any moist surface they land on.
Indoor mold growth requires water and is often found in humid environments. Common household locations for mold include areas of previous flood damage, sweating basement walls, leaking roofs, areas where plumbing has leaked, toilets, showers, baths, sinks, and open spaces between floors or eaves that are affected by condensation.
Most molds thrive at humidity levels that exceed 65 percent.
Modern air conditioners were designed to not only cool air but to control humidity. Often a mold problem can be controlled by simply allowing the air conditioner to do its job.
This requires air flow throughout the house. You can ensure proper air flow by makings sure all registers and grates are open, allowing some space between larger pieces of furniture and interior walls, regularly cleaning filters, and preventing cool air from escaping with tight seals in doorways and windows.
Although modern air conditioners have a dehumidifying effect on indoor environments, you can increase this effect with additional dehumidifiers, fans, and running the ventilation fans in bathrooms and kitchens.