Preventing Basement Humidity and Mold
If you have a smell or odor problem coming from your Central, MO basement or home, it may be mold.
Humidity is the key offender of spaces that grow mold and mildew. When the relative humidity is over 60%, mold and mildew have enough moisture in the air to really thrive. In Columbia and other Central MO areas, we certainly have humidity high enough for this to be a problem. They also live on organic materials (anything of carbon origin) like wood, paper, cardboard, and insulation so mold and mildew have a field day and blossom in that space.If basements get a water leak or wetness that is caused by something else like moisture, it can cause mold growth. Mold can start to grow within 48 hours after any water leak or wetness has been caused. You may not see it but it can or will be there hiding from you somewhere in your home. Mold can only grow if there is moisture or wetness in the area. If the areas in your home are dry, mold cannot grow, and you will not get harmed from it. It is a nasty mess of fungus that can grow in homes, buildings, outside, or anywhere it wants. It spreads and reproduces.
This will cause major damage, and the professionals have to remove it for you so it will not harm you. Mold can appear anywhere if it is not dried and cleaned. It will get worse and the cost to remove it and the repairs for the damage it has done will be higher, too. If moisture becomes or gets worse, the mold will spread to other parts of the house or other places in the basement. You will be able to tell there is mold by the odor in the air because all you have to do is smell it. The odor can smell like moldy must or worse than that. The moisture or wetness can release it in the air, causing it to grow under things like carpets and appliances, in the air vents, and in your things.
Everyone is naturally allergic to mold because it's an organism which inflames our immune systems. However, there are different degrees to which different people are allergic to it. In many cases, people have chronic allergies due to the mold and mildew coming up from their moldy basement. This can create sniffling, sneezing, chronic asthma, chest congestion, fatigue, among other symptoms.
If you are considering remodeling your basement, you should make sure you have a dry basement. Even if you're not transforming your basement into a finished one, basement dampness is not a problem you should ignore. Basement dehumidifiers are frequently the easiest and most effective solution to basement humidity problems.
Once you've removed the water source (such as leaks) and transferred the water outside (with drains and sump pumps) you will then want to install a dehumidifier to keep your basement air below 50% humidity.