All posts by Abby

A Kiwis’s Guide to Preventing Mould Damage in Basements

Going down to the basement and finding that it’s filled with nasty moulds can be quite a nightmarish situation. Besides the fact that water damage is quite an eyesore, those rapidly growing microscopic organisms can trigger several health problems and structural concerns. Fortunately, there are ways you can prevent or mitigate mould damage in basements. Read through our short guide below and get expert insights on how you can handle the situation.

What are Moulds, and How can they Affect you?

Moulds can grow anywhere, even in well-maintained places. It’s a type of fungi, which means it propagates quickly in highly moist areas. The humid climate in New Zealand is also a major contributing factor of mould overgrowth.

They naturally occur outdoors, especially on dead trees and other types of debris. However, they can spread on various material such as wallpaper, wooden tiles, ceiling, and wooden supporting beams when they invade homes. If left undiscovered, mould overgrowth can cause severe structural damage as the materials rot and weaken. It also impacts your home’s aesthetic because of dark or sometimes greenish stains on the affected areas.

As we’ve mentioned earlier, moulds can also increase risks for many health problems, including:

  • Pneumonitis
  • Allergic sinusitis
  • Asthma attacks
  • Aspergillosis

How to Prevent Moulds from Growing, especially in the Basement

Most of the time, mould problem starts in the basement due to leaky pipes and other plumbing issues. That’s why it’s crucial to have your pipe problems fixed before they cause water damage. Some signs of pipe damage or leaks that you need to look out for include the following:

  • Unexplainably high water bill
  • Musty smell especially in rooms with a lot paper and wood
  • Visible stains caused by mildews or moulds
  • Wet and moist parts on the ceiling or walls

It’s also good practice to check for basement flooding. If your property was constructed back in the 1980s, it might be susceptible to basement flooding due to the absence of subsoil drainage. While it may be tempting to use stormwater sumps, it’s best to choose either waterproofing solutions or subsoil drainage installation to keep the water from coming in and accumulating in the area.

Here are other specific applications of subsoil drainage installation:

  • Properties with uneven landscape and high contour differences 
  • Auckland homes that have clay soil
  • Properties that require building retaining walls

If you already have subsoil drainage, you may opt to use basement flooding solutions instead. Talk to a drainlayer to know the most practical method to use to waterproof your home.

What to Do after Getting Rid of Extra Moisture in the Basement

Once you keep the moisture levels at an ideal rate, it will be easier to prevent or mitigate the damage. If you’re only dealing with minor damage, scrubbing with a powerful cleaning solution made from soap, bleach and water may be enough to clear out the mould and mildew.

However, if the damage is too severe and extensive, it’s better to call for a mould remediation professional. Dealing with severe mould overgrowth in your home is not recommended because it exposes you to health risks. Also, you might not address the problem as effectively as a mould removal or remediation specialist would.

Take note tht failing to remove or clean all the mould-infested areas would only spell trouble for your hour household in the next few months. The moulds can grow back and cause the same problem over and over until you completely address the root cause of it all.

Act Fast and Prevent Future Problems!

If you think your area is susceptible to mould damage and infestation, you need to act quickly. Have your drainage checked or ask for a professional house waterproofing to prevent moisture from seeping into the interiors. It’s also helpful to eliminate other moisture sources in the property such as washing machine or dishwasher leaks, poorly insulated windows or crawlspaces, and sewer backups. 

Get in touch with a drainage specialist or an Auckland drainlayer today to help protect your home from moulds.