Mould needs food and water to grow. Since we can’t eliminate mould “food” from our homes (drywall, osb, plywood and wood), we need to reduce the water. Controlling the humidity in your home makes your house less hospitable to mould – and who wants an uninvited “guest” that will damage your property? Keep in mind that that reducing humidity in the home is more about ventilation and air movement than it is about heat.
The more people and pets who live in your home, the more humidity you are creating.
The first simple way to reduce humidity is to air out your home. Open your windows occasionally – yes, even in winter. Kitchen and bathroom fans are crucial to reducing humidity. Make sure that they are in good working order. Hold a tissue up to the fan – if it drops to the floor it is an indicator that the fan is not pulling enough air.
Don’t forget there is another part to these fans hidden in your attic. Fan venting should be expelling directly out of the roof of your home – in the shortest path possible from the source. The more bends in the venting, the less air it is pulling. Venting that has come apart, is running many feet across your attic, or is venting out the soffits is not sufficient.
Having working fans is only one step – you need to actually turn them on when you are cooking or showering. Better yet, have an electrician install a humidistat and connect it to your bathroom fan. It should be installed on the outside wall of your bathroom at eye level. A humidistat will automatically turn on your bathroom fan when the humidity is high and will run until it lowers.
Have you looked in your crawlspace or basement? If you see water pooling you need to get this addressed. Make sure your heat is on in your crawlspace and that there is some sort of air flow – don’t close the crawlspace vents. If you don’t have vents, place a fan or a dehumidifier in this area.
Some other things to to think about:
- We suggest running a high-end dehumidifier if you have an aquarium or hot tub inside your home.
- Furniture and boxes should not be pushed tight up against outside walls – leave a gap to allow for air movement.
- Keep closet doors open if they are on an outside wall.
- Never place mattresses directly on the floor.