When the winter weather finally gives way to the warmer signs of spring, many people experience what’s known as hay fever – an allergic reaction caused by proteins released from blossoming trees and blooming flowers. It’s normally a small sacrifice, particularly for folks in the Midwest who have just experienced five months of ice and snow.
However, some homeowners may find that these mild signs of an allergic reaction never quite subside, and even worsen into asthma over time. If that’s the case, perhaps the culprit isn’t the budding flora outside, but could in fact be the result of mold growth inside your own home. Such was the case during our recent inspection of 1968 ranch in Crown Point, IN, where the family was complaining of asthmatic symptoms and frequent cold-like sickness.
Our team quickly found that insufficient ventilation and insulation of the home was trapping both heat and condensation in the attic, leading to the source of the family’s health issues: Mold. In the grand scheme, the family was fairly lucky, as unchecked mold growth can lead to a slew of other issues including rotting framework and a collapsing roof. To address the issues, we recommended the biogrowth be thoroughly cleaned by a professional, and then suggested improvements to the home’s ventilation and insulation, namely: adding additional insulation in the attic (with R30 to R38 insulation value); installing styrofoam baffles at eaves to correct ventilation; mold air testing after repairs are completed by licensed contractors.
Insulation and ventilation are some of the most important components to a healthy home – both regarding the structure itself and it’s inhabitants. The IRC code book is very clear on insulation: section R402.1 requires the thermal envelope of ceilings and attic spaces to be insulated in accordance with climate and structure. The same attention is paid to roof ventilation: section R806.1 specifies that enclosed attics shall have cross ventilation for each space, with 1/16” to 1/4” vent holes in the soffit.
Proper attic insulation and ventilation will help keep your home mold-free, safe, and comfortable for the whole family. Our team is well-versed not only in identifying all the signs of mold, but is also committed to finding the root of every issue, and clearly defining how each one can be solved.
- Allergy and Asthma Foundation of America
- International Residential Code for One- and Two Family Dwellings 2018. 1st ed., ICC, 2017.