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MAINTAINING A HOME

How to prevent mould in your house

08 April 2022

 

If you live in a storm or flood-affected area like Queensland, chances are you’ve battled mould. But it’s not just those affected by extreme dampness after a storm or flood that can get mould — it can sneak into anyone’s walls, bathrooms, and ceilings, given the right conditions.

Check out our top strategies for preventing and killing mould.

What is mould?

Mould is a type of fungi that can occur in environments where there’s water and limited sunlight. Far from just being a nuisance, it can pose health risks and cause damage to your home and contents.

Some causes of mould include:

  • poor ventilation in bathrooms and laundries
  • leaks in the roof
  • low levels of natural light
  • condensation, and
  • flooding in the home.

Does Suncorp Home Insurance cover mould?

We don’t cover mould damage unless it’s directly caused by an incident covered by your policy and there’s no evidence of pre-existing mould.

However, we do cover an escape of liquid. That basically means a loss or damage caused by water leaking, overflowing, or bursting from things like your fridge, bath, washing machine, toilet, gutters, swimming pool, fixed pipes and cooling system, water main and more.

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How to prevent mould in your house

Identify problem areas

If you can spot mould in its early stages, or areas where mould is likely to grow, you can try to nip it in the bud. It’s usually recognisable by spores and a yellow, blue, black, grey, or greenish colour. It sometimes has a musty scent. Another sign that there may be mould in your house is if you have a runny nose, a sore throat, or other allergy-like symptoms.   

Dry and ventilate wet areas

Ensure that you dry areas that are often wet, such as laundries, kitchens, and bathrooms. Try and keep these areas well ventilated by switching on ceiling fans and opening windows when you can.

Monitor humidity

If you live somewhere with high humidity levels, like tropical Queensland, a dehumidifier — which takes moisture out of the air — might be a good buy. They can also help relieve asthma symptoms, which is great if there are any sufferers in your family.

Use waterproof paint

Waterproof paint can help prevent mould by creating a seal and stopping moisture from seeping in through the walls. So next time you’re thinking of putting on a fresh coat, do a bit of research into interior and exterior waterproof paints, or speak to a consultant at a paint store.   

Clean gutters

Cleaning dirty gutters is important. Gutters full of debris can cause leaks, which can lead to mould.

How to kill and control mould

If mould has already set in, there’s a few ways you can try and get it under control.

Anti-mould sprays can help kill mould, as can regular spot wiping with soapy water. Alternatively, a solution of vinegar and water, a cloth, and some muscle should give the mould a good scare.

And don’t forget to check if your insurer covers leaks or water damage!

With Suncorp Home Insurance, you’ll have cover for damage caused by an unexpected leak, if your fridge, fixed pipes or basins were to suddenly start leaking.

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Insurance is issued by AAI Limited ABN 48 005 297 807 trading as Suncorp Insurance. Consider the Product Disclosure Statement before making a decision about this insurance. The TMD is also available. Limits, conditions and exclusions apply. This advice has been prepared without taking into account your particular objectives, financial situation or needs, so you should consider whether it is appropriate for you before acting on it.