How to Prevent Allergens and Mold in the Basement

By:    |   Published March 22, 2017
Mildew on tile floor and walls of a basement

If there was one place in your home that is most likely to cause allergy flare-ups, it’s your basement. Due to the high humidity, basements make excellent hosts for the most common home allergens. It’s surprisingly common to find mold in the basement, making it one of the most likely triggers for allergy symptoms or respiratory issues in a house.

That means you need to allergy proof your basement, and you’ll need to know where to start. EverDry Toledo can help! Read this list to learn the steps you can take to reduce your chances developing mold in the basement.

#1. Use a Dehumidifier

Excessive moisture creates the ideal environment for mold in the basement and dust mites. By reducing the moisture levels, you can make it difficult for them to thrive in your basement. When using your dehumidifier, you’ll want to aim for 35-45% relative humidity. Higher humidity is what promotes molds and dust mites, but if the humidity is too low it can promote viruses.

#2. Improve Ventiliation with the E-Z Breathe System

The E-Z- Breathe System can improve your air quality with no regular maintenance required.  Once installed, this unit protects your home from poor air quality, as well as molds, toxins, and allergies. Learn more about improving your home’s atmosphere with the E-Z- Breathe System.

#3. Immediately Remove Mold in the Basement

This may seem obvious, but even the tiniest bit of mold needs to be removed as soon as possible. Never let the problem get out of hand and you can save yourself a lot of trouble down the road.

While some people believe musty smells are typical for basements, they’re not – they’re only a strong indicator of mold or mildew. Just because you can’t see it, doesn’t mean it’s not there! The moment you think you notice the smell of mildew or mold in the basement, identify the source and remove it.

#4. Replace Carpeting

Wall-to-wall carpeting may look nice in your basement, but it can absorb a lot of moisture over time. To prevent allergens, consider basement floor options like cement, slate, or linoleum. There are plenty of ways to keep your floor looking great without the need for carpet – and almost any other option reduces your risk of promoting mold in the basement.

#5. Fix Plumbing Leaks as Soon as Possible

Small leaks can be dealt with on your own with the right DIY knowledge, but sometimes the small problems are indicators of a bigger issue. It’s always best to call a professional to safely deal with any plumbing issues before they become disasters. Take every leak or break seriously, as water can quickly cause damage that requires costly repairs.

#6. Fix Cracks in the Foundation Immediately

It’s critical that you keep the foundation secure. A small crack inside of the foundation often means more cracks on the outside – and these all lead to water seepage that can not only foster basement allergens, but also cause severe damage to your home or property. If you notice cracks, contact us and we may be able to help prevent further leaks with foundation crack injections.

#7. Don’t Leave Upholstered Furniture or Clothing in a Damp Basement

Do you use your unfinished basement for extra storage? It’s typical to use the basement as a “catch-all,” but certain items commonly stored in the basement are great at trapping in moisture. If you store clothes in the basement, consider using sealed containers or space-saving bags. As far as furniture goes, if you must store it in the basement, don’t forget to clean and inspect it as regularly as you do the rest of the house.

#8. Don’t Leave Cardboard Boxes Laying Around

Cardboard doesn’t just absorb moisture and promote allergens, it also makes the perfect home for critters and insects! If you have a mountain of old cardboard boxes, break them down and take them to the nearest recycling drop-off. Cardboard doesn’t make the best long-term storage solution, consider replacing it with plastic containers that safely seal your belongings and won’t promote mold.

#9. Use Interior Paints that Have Mold Inhibitors

If you’re looking for a new color, interior paint with mold inhibitors is a great option.  The additives in this paint will fight mold growth and can be a real lifesaver in damp areas of your home beyond the basement, like your bathrooms.


Inspecting and Waterproofing Your Basement

Since moisture is the biggest factor to mold and other allergens taking over your basement, the best way to prevent it is making sure your basement is truly dry and waterproofed. There are several options to waterproof a basement, and Everdry Toledo specializes in finding the right waterproofing solution for your home.

4 Basement Waterproofing Options Info Graphic

Schedule a Free 20-Point Inspection

If you have questions about preventing moisture and mold in your basement or would like an inspection to guarantee your foundation is in good shape, EverDry Toledo can help with a FREE 20-point basement inspection! We’ll help you pinpoint the source of the moisture problem. If it’s foundation-related, our waterproofing solutions can make your basement dry, healthy, and comfortable.

Contact us online to schedule an appointment or give us a call at (419) 469-5833 and schedule your inspection today!

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