Moisture can wreak havoc on your home and your health. As well as increasing your risk of allergies and respiratory problems, it can cause significant structural problems in your house. It’s important to be aware of the signs of moisture so you can take action to resolve the problem and prevent it from getting worse. Use this checklist to detect moisture in your home.
Look for water stains on your walls and floors
Moisture is easy to spot on your walls and floors. Look for damp patches on your floors, changes in the color of your walls and cracking, peeling or blistering of your wallpaper, especially in areas where ventilation is lacking, such as behind cabinets, in crawl spaces, under carpets, in attics and on outside walls.
Check your windows for condensation, ice or frost
Condensation occurs when moist air meets a cooler surface and forms droplets on the surface. Signs of condensation include water running down your windows, damp patches on your walls, and sweating or rusted pipes. Water leaks can also cause moisture damage — look for dripping or standing water around your pipes.
Notice musty smells
A number of things can cause musty smells, but mold and mildew are often the main culprits. Moisture, poor air flow and darkness encourage mold and mildew growth.
Pay attention to deformed or rotting wood
Wood is a hygroscopic material, which means it absorbs water. However, when it absorbs too much water, it can swell and start to rot. Rotting wood may feel soft or have a blue or steel gray hue. Dark wood may appear lighter with dark veins running through it, while light wood may have brown streaks on the face or end grains.
Search for signs of mold and mildew
Mold and mildew can be caused by moisture, and is often seen in kitchens, bathrooms, bedrooms, basements, and crawl spaces, mainly because of poor ventilation and high humidity. Look for brown, orange, black, white or green discoloration on the walls in these areas of your home.
Examine any concrete or masonry areas
The porous nature of concrete and other masonry materials means that water can seep into your home, making it damp. Watch out for signs of chipping, crusting or powdery masonry, particularly during the freeze-and-thaw cycle.
Poor ventilation is a common cause of moisture in a home. At WAVE Home Solutions, our home air filters and moisture control units can help you achieve air purification and whole house ventilation, essential elements for a drier, healthier home. Contact us today for more information.