(Family Features) In the U.S. alone, approximately 60 million people suffer from asthma and allergies, which according to the American Lung Association can be triggered by mold for those who are allergic. As a responsible homeowner, it’s essential to be aware of the many threats, such as mold and fire, which may cause harm to your family and your investment.
Even the cleanest, newest and most properly-maintained homes hold potential disasters that can harm the health and safety of your family. From mold mishaps to fire threats, here are some things to check for around your abode:
The threat of mold
With the ability to produce irritants and allergens that can compromise the health of your family, mold can grow practically anywhere within the home. To keep mold-producing moisture away from your home, Lucas Hamilton, building scientist and expert with CertainTeed, provides these tips:
Feel the breeze: When the weather allows it, try to ventilate your home by opening windows and doors to let moisture escape. If necessary, use a fan to allow air to circulate.
Insulate well: Because moisture is unavoidable in any home, its presence in the wall cavity is almost inevitable and dangerous when not addressed. Your best prevention is with quality insulation, such as innovative and exclusive CertainTeed SMARTBATT with MoistureSense technology, which helps provide a healthier indoor environment by helping to reduce the risk of mold and mildew, and improving indoor air quality overall.
Direct away: While you won’t be able to stop the rain from falling and creating a wet mess in your basement or crawlspace, you can take action to steer that water away. Make sure a proper grade exists in your yard to prevent water from reaching the foundation.
Unseen fire dangers
Beyond investing in quality smoke and fire detectors, there are several other things to consider to keep your home free from flames:
Hang safely: Before hanging up that new mirror, make sure you aren’t driving a nail through the wiring in the walls — a danger that accounts for thousands of home fires each year. To avoid this mishap, switch out circuit breakers with arc-fault circuit interrupters, which detect sparks and prevent them from becoming a blaze.
Cook with caution: The kitchen is a hot spot for fires to start. Always keep combustible items such as towels, pot holders and cookbooks at least 3-4 feet from burners, the oven and other heat sources.
Clean the dryer: Reduce the risk of fire by having your clothes dryer cabinet professionally cleaned every few years. If enough lint accumulates within the dryer the heating element within the appliance can start a fire.
Take the proper steps now to avoid unsafe conditions within the home. In the long run, it can save you time, money and possibly even the well-being of your family. For more tips on how to improve your home, visit