At Dr. Energy Saver, we do a lot of work on attics, basements and crawl spaces because, when it comes to energy-efficient upgrades, these areas are the main priority. While working in attics and basements we often run into mold problems.
Due to a physics phenomenon known as the "stack effect," much of a home's conditioned air leaks out through the attic. Therefore, a properly insulated and air sealed attic is the number one priority in achieving a green, energy-efficient home.
As the air escapes through the attic, a lot of unconditioned, outside air is sucked in through the lower levels of the house. This is why air sealing and insulating your attic or crawl space is the second most important upgrade. During the summer months, that unconditioned outside air carries a lot of moisture that, in contact with colder surfaces inside the home, will condense and lead to mold growth.
Mold is a very tricky organism. It spreads quickly, because living colonies are always releasing "seeds" or mold spores into the air. These airborne spores only need a moist, warm organic surface to develop and our attics, basements and crawl spaces provide the perfect environment for them to strive.
Thus we are often treating these areas for mold infestation as part of the services we perform. In this episode of "On The Job," Larry Janesky, owner and founder of Dr. Energy Saver, explains the mold removal process, using a product called Mold-X Cleaner. Mold-X is applied using a fogger, much like the ones used in pest control. The product will kill and neutralize the mold, stopping it from releasing spores.
While the chemicals in Mold-X aren't as harmful as many similar products, safety precautions must be taken. Everyone living in the home, including pets, must leave the premises during the application, and for two hours after.
Once the mold is killed, additional steps must be taken to control moisture in the crawl space, basement and attic, to prevent new mold growth. Crawl space encapsulation, proper air sealing and a powerful dehumidifier might be needed to permanently avoid mold problems in the future.
At Dr. Energy Saver, we specialize in making homes more energy efficient, healthier and more comfortable. For more information on home energy conservation, watch our other "On The Job" episodes, and don't forget to call your local Dr. Energy Saver dealer for a free written estimate!