You may be wondering if a dehumidifier helps with mold if you’ve got a mold problem in your home. While it might only be a spot or two that you’ve noticed so far, naturally you want to avoid further mold appearing.
But knowing how to do that isn’t always as simple as you’d hope. Yes, you can buy mold blasting sprays and wipe your walls and ceilings down but that’s only dealing with the surface issue, not actually treating the cause of the mold. Which, FYI, is super important to attempt to remedy.
So, if mold is causing an issue in your home, is investing in a dehumidifier the answer? I’ve spoken to mold experts to find out whether a dehumidifier is the solution to keeping black mold at bay.
How does a dehumidifier help with mold?
If you’re thinking of adding a dehumidifier to your home to help combat mold and want to know how well they work, I’ve found all the info you need.
What causes mold at home?
It's no coincidence that you often see mold growth on walls and ceilings in bathrooms, kitchens, and rooms with wet windows. Mold growth in homes tends to be caused by excess moisture combined with warm rooms. Hence steamy bathrooms and kitchens are often where black mold is found in homes.
The higher humidity a home has, the more likely that mold will thrive there. In order to survive, mold pulls moisture from the air, which is where using a dehumidifier (like this HomeLabs one from Amazon that comes with over 40,000 five-star reviews) to help combat mold comes in.
That said, it's worth noting that structural issues within properties can also cause mold to develop. So, it's important to work out what the cause of the mold in your home is and determine whether it's a moisture-related issue that can be dealt with more easily or a structural problem that could be harder to fix.
How do dehumidifiers help with mold?
By removing excess water vapor from the air and maintaining a good level of humidity in your home, with the help of a dehumidifier, you can help to stop mold from developing.
HVAC technician and the owner of airconditionerlab.com, Josh Mitchell says: “Mold requires moisture to grow, and a dehumidifier works by extracting excess moisture from the air, thus hindering the damp conditions mold spores need to thrive.
“By keeping indoor humidity levels within the recommended range of 30-50%, you create an environment that is less hospitable to mold.
Where should a dehumidifier be placed?
Mitchell advises that it’s best to: “Place dehumidifiers in high-moisture areas like bathrooms without windows, kitchens, or basements if your apartment has one. These areas tend to accumulate moisture from daily activities like showering and cooking.”
What else can dehumidifiers help with, other than mold?
Dehumidifiers can also be used to reduce condensation within your home, as well as improving air quality.
Mitchell says: “Excess humidity can lead to condensation on windows and walls, which can seep into cracks and crevices, providing a hidden breeding ground for mold. A dehumidifier can help prevent this condensation.
“Lowering moisture levels can also reduce musty odors associated with mold and mildew, contributing to better overall air quality in your apartment.”
Will a dehumidifier completely remove mold from your home?
A dehumidifier is a great tool for preventing mold from occurring in the first place but it will not treat pre-existing mold.
Todd Saunders, CEO of FlooringStores says: "Generally speaking, a dehumidifier won't be able to help very much with an active mold infestation. These devices aren't capable of killing mold spores, so an air purifier or intense deep cleaning would be needed to remove an existing infestation. However, dehumidifiers are great tools to prevent the growth of mold in the first place. Since dehumidifiers reduce the amount of moisture in the air, these devices make internal spaces less hospitable for mold to grow.
Need more advice for removing black mold from your home? Our expert-approved guide to black mold removal has all the info you need.
Josh Mitchell is a HVAC technician and the owner of airconditionerlab.com.
Todd Saunders is the CEO of FlooringStores and a mold expert.
Now that you know how to use a dehumidifier to help prevent the development of mold in the first place, you might be wondering what steps you can take to remove the areas of mold that already exist within your home, such as removing mold from your shower curtain.
You might also be wondering what you can do about other types of mold and damp, such as white mold in your basement, and how easy it is to remove and prevent it from reoccurring.