Prevent Water Damage & Mold Growth
May 30, 2015
Routine maintenance inspections are the single most crucial element in preventing water damage and mold growth.
- Look for condensation and wet spots from the attic to the basement.
- Maintain living areas; clean kitchens and bathrooms regularly, do not allow unused organic materials to accumulate and dispose of refuse in a timely manner.
- Leave a 2-3″ space between furniture and walls allowing air to circulate freely.
- Repair plumbing leaks and other building leaks as soon as possible.
- Prevent moisture condensation by reducing the moisture level in the air and increasing air circulation.
- Keep HVAC (heating, ventilating and air-conditioning) drip pans clean, flowing properly, and unobstructed; change filters regularly.
- Vent moisture generating appliances (e.g., clothes dryers) to the building exterior (i.e., outside) when possible.
- Be sure to check water hoses on appliances e.g. dishwashers, washing machines, refrigerators/ice cube makers, as well as reviewing hot water heaters for wear and deterioration on a quarterly basis.
- Vent kitchens and bathrooms to code requirements.
- Leave the bathroom door open and run the exhaust fan for a few minutes after showering/bathing.
- Provide adequate drainage around buildings and slope ground away from building foundations; follow local code requirements.
- Clean gutters and downspouts; add downspout extensions to divert water away from building foundation if necessary.
- Be sure there is at least 2′ between buildings and landscaping; the gap will allow air to circulate and prevent moisture accumulation.
- Remove snow from roofs to prevent structural damage/ice dams and to keep ridge vents and DWV pipes working effectively.
- Identify areas where leaks have occurred, correct the causes and take preventative action to ensure leaks do not recur.
- Never leave buildings while appliances are running unattended.