Fighting Recurring Mold: Four Ways To Lower Humidity Without A Dehumidifier

Posted on: 31 July 2015

Mold loves humidity. That's why you often see it appear in bathrooms and basements. It only makes sense, then, that lowering the humidity in your home can help prevent mold growth.  Dehumidifiers, however, have their own downsides: in addition to the up-front cost of the machine, they run on electricity and can increase your monthly energy bills. They also need to be emptied regularly, have filters that must be cleaned or replaced, and require periodic cleaning of the coils and water tank.

So if you have recurring mold, don't rush out and buy a dehumidifier. First, try a few simpler techniques to lower the humidity in your home.

Increase Ventilation

This can be as simple as opening the windows in your home or running ceiling fans. For kitchens and bathrooms, be sure to run ventilation fans if your house has them. The increased airflow makes a big difference in home humidity.

If the weather outside is hot and humid, ventilation can be less effective. Consider running your air conditioner instead of opening windows. Air conditioners function similarly to dehumidifiers, so along with keeping your home cool, running your A/C will lower the amount of moisture in the air.

Stop Leaks

Whether it's a leaky pipe somewhere or just a dripping tap that didn't seem worth fixing, indoor water leaks can raise the humidity in your home. That leaky water only has two places to go: either it soaks into the material below or it evaporates into the air. Either way, this encourages mold growth. A surface that's damp from a leak can grow mold directly, while leaking water evaporating into the air means higher humidity and a more mold-friendly environment in the entire house.

Vent Dryer Outdoors

Hopefully, your dryer vents outdoors; this way, when you dry your clothes, the moisture that is removed from them is released into the atmosphere outside. If your dryer isn't vented outdoors, you're releasing that moisture into your home instead. If this is the case, changing your venting is the best solution. But you can also reduce humidity by drying your clothing outside on a line. This way, the moisture is released outside rather than into your home's air.

Mulch Indoor Plants

If you have many potted plants in your house, they may also be contributing to indoor humidity. When you water the soil around your plants, only some of that water ends up absorbed by the roots. The wet soil also releases moisture back into the air through evaporation. Mulch, however, can greatly slow this process. And in addition to lowering humidity, you'll also need to water your plants less often.

If these tips don't help cut down on the mold in your home, a dehumidifier may be the next step.  In the meantime,  you can call a company that specializes in mold remediation