What You Don’t Know About Mold Could Harm You

What You Don’t Know About Mold Could Harm You

In late-October, a local news station aired a story about snowbird homeowners who returned to SWFL—to find their home had been overrun by mold.  They were only gone for five weeks, the wife told ABC 7, but they knew something was wrong the second they walked in the door.

The problem, they learned, was mold. It was everywhere— in addition to needing to replace most of their stuff, they also needed to rip up the floors and rehabilitate the walls. Not only was this expensive- the repairs were also lengthy.

So how did this happen, exactly?

When the homeowners left, they put their AC onto fan mode. Instead of cooling the air, it simply recirculated the air. Unfortunately, that’s one of the worst mistakes that people can make.

Tips to prevent mold in SWFL

If you own a vacation home in the SWFL region, there are things you can do to protect your home from mold.

Watch out for condensation

If the inside of your home is humid, and water vapor in the cools and turns into liquid, you’ll likely find condensation on windows, metal pipes, water tanks and concrete walls. One of the best ways to prevent condensation is to ensure your home’s humidity levels are kept in check.

Watch out for water leaks

If your hot water heater breaks, a pipe bursts, or your toilet overflows, and the water isn’t cleaned up immediately, this could lead to a mold problem. Consequently, if you plan on being out of town for several weeks (or months) at a time, you’ll want to make sure that your home is being checked on.

Set your thermostat to “auto”

Experts agree that when you leave your home, you should not set your thermostat to the fan setting. When the fan is set to “on,” this prevents your AC from running (which will allow humidity to build up in your home.)  If you leave your fan on—the humidity level in your home can and will rise substantially, and in some cases, it could reach 70% or more (fact: the EPA recommends that to prevent mold, indoor humidity levels should be kept at or below 50%.)

Partner with a home watch service

The best way to ensure your home is protected when you’re not in town, is to partner with a local home watch service. For more information on our rates or to learn more about how home watch works, call our office today to get started.