Category Archives: Articles

Dehumidifiers in humid, coastal areas

Beach1High rainfall, high summer temperatures and mountainous, timbered areas make an ideal breeding ground for mould to grow, sometimes exponentially. 

Small capacity dehumidifiers, in most cases, are not powerful enough for these conditions.

Powerful, large extraction units, like the Moisture Cure 35, the FRAL 24 or the Moisture Cure 20  are  more suitable for this region. 

With the summer temperature often in the high 20′s or even 30′s and humidity as high as 85-90%+ a dehumidifier needs to be selected for  its ability to extract large volumes of moisture quickly, quietly and at a reasonable running cost.  The above dehumidifiers will handle these conditions with ease.

 
 

Ventilation and natural sunshine should also be considereSund.  Whenever possible ventilate your home by opening windows and doors as much as possible, and always encourage as much sunlight into your home as you can.

Even leaving your windows open a little will help.  Security is always an issue these days, so maybe consider investing in window locks that allow windows to be left open with minimal risk of them being forced open.  Lengths of timber dowel  laid in the window tracks will achieve a similar result.  Either way, try and keep windows open as often as possible to give your home the best possible chance of being ventilated.

Large capacity dehumidifiers are the choice for these areas, but sometimes they can be partnered up with smaller capacity units being used in separate bedrooms or even home offices.  Use the large capacity unit in the main areas and use the smaller units for a day or two in different bedrooms.

Moisture Cure does have specials where you can purchase 2 larger units and receive a discounted smaller unit.

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Dehumidifiers and Air-conditioners

LogoWe estimate as many as 75% of our customers have air-conditioners but they also had a mould, condensation or dampness problem.

We think the reason for this is simple, an air-conditioner will generally require significant power to operate and for this reason they just don’t get used as much as they could be.

Besides, who wants to have to lock their home up so the air-conditioner can work efficiently, this is just the opposite of what we are suggesting you should do.

If you enjoy air-conditioning, and lots do, that’s great, but if you prefer to ventilate your home with open windows and open doors, maybe a dehumidifier is for you. We think this is by far the more healthy and sensible option.

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Cleaning mould

HeadacheNearly everyone who lives in a house or unit has at some time tried to clean mould, fungus or even mildew.

Most have found it to be a less than satisfying job, smelly, dirty, gets up your nose, can even give you a headache and in some cases even makes you angry and depressed.

 

Guess what, if this is what cleaning mould does to you, you aren’t alone.

 

Cleaning mould can be little more than an annoying time waster or it can be a life threatening exercise, it all depends how you personally are affected by mould.

 

A few facts about mould:  Mould is a higher life form than Cleaning Mould1humans, bit scary, don’t you think?   It’s been around millions and millions of years longer than we have, even longer than your great Uncle Bert, in fact 25% of the earth’s mass is made up of mould, and without it we would be in a pretty sorry state.  Mould cleans up our rubbish, mould lives on our skin and keeps it healthy, mould is pretty well everywhere, in fact in most cases we can’t live without it.

However, when we have the right conditions mould will grow expedencialy and will soon reach levels dangerous to us.  When these high levels of mould infestation are reached, it turns from being our friend to our enemy.  You need to handle the cleaning of this excessive mould growth with care.

If you discover small areas of mould growing, you can handle the cleaning yourself armed with the right cleaning solutions and some common sense.

 

If you discover a large mould growth, anything over say 10 square metres in size, you would be wise to call in the experts.  Mould Removal

Moisture Cure has the technical knowhow, qualifications and experience to successfully decontaminate excessive mould contamination, in both domestic and commercial areas.

 

Mouldy smells

Even if you can’t see mould growing but you can smell it, you are getting headaches or feeling slightly off-colour or even feeling tense, angry and depressed, it’s almost certain you have excess mould in your home and you need to do something about it.

 

You don’t have to be able to see mould to know you have it growing; if you can smell it – you have it.Sneezing

That’s another thing about mould; it’s very hard to kill.  Most of the recognized brands of so called mould killers or mould removers only succeed in lightening mould so you think it’s been removed.  All you are really doing is bleaching the colour from it and in a few weeks time it will colour up again and be back just as strong.

 

Mould and humidity

Mould can grow in a variety of situations including under ice and snow but it particularly likes growing in damp humid airless conditions, this is why mould loves growing in dark humid subfloor areas and in homes that are locked up, not allowing natural air and breezes to flow through.  We suggest ventilating your home and your subfloor as much as possible and letting as much sunlight in as you can in.

By ventilating we mean opening windows and doors whenever you are home and pulling your curtains and blinds back to let plenty of fresh air and sunshine in, this will create an area that mould finds hard to grow in.

 

If you find you still have mould growing,
we suggest you go a little further at removing the moisture that is causing high humidity and encouraging mould
by investing in a dehumidifier from Moisture Cure.

 

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Moisture Cure dehumidifiers are specialized drying machines that extract excess moisture from every where it’s hiding, in your carpet; furniture; paintings; bedding; timber; leather goods; in fact mould is the perfect opportunist in that it will grow and flourish on just about any surface.  It is always seeking moisture to feed on and will even cross glass to get to something holding the moisture it is seeking.

 

So, if you find mould in your home, ventilate.  Let the sun shine in and maybe consider a Moisture Cure dehumidifier.

Dust mites, mould and humidity

DustmiteMould, mildew and dampness all play a large part in the breeding habits’ of dust mites.

Dust mites are normal tenants in our homes, and generally cause no harm.  They eat, among other things, the dried, discarded skin we all shed, plus hair and dander from us and our pets.

When mould is present, during high humidity and dampness, it will attach itself onto this dead skin, dander and hair and effectively soften it enough so that dust mites can eat it.

 

Mould is the dust mite’s best friend!

In these ideal conditions of high humidity, dampness and mould growth, dust mites will begin to breed exponentially and continue to shed their skins and shells.

It is these discarded shells and skins that cause us trouble.  Being very light, they float in the air and are easily breathed into your lungs.

AsthmaIt’s believed it is the high protein in their skins and faeces that irate us, maybe even in some cases, causing asthma.

However, when the humidity in your home is reduced to more acceptable levels, between 55-65%, mould will find conditions are much harder to begin growing in.

Without mould being present to attach itself to dead skin, dander, hair, etc., this food source is like concrete, and too hard for dust mites to eat and digest.

This is the reason your home should be as free from mould, mildew and dampness as possible.

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Dust mites, mould and allergies

We know lots of our customers are concerned about allergic reactions caused by dust mites. 

These little critters have a fascinating life.  DustmiteAs it turns out, they aren’t really the nasty horrors they are made out to be.  In fact, they have a pretty important role in our environment.  Dust mites live on all the old skin and hair that we and our pets shed every day and generally act as environ friendly clean up helpers.

What does present problems for us is the skin they shed and the excreta they produce.

They will shed their skin regularly, very much like a snake does, and being very light will float in the air for us to breathe into our lungs.  For people who are sensitive and prone to allergies these small particles of dry skin and shell can cause irritations in the throat and respiratory system.

The dust mite excreta (dust mite poo) behave in a similar way.  Being very light this floats in the air, and, because it is very rich in protein, can cause severe irritation when inhaled.

The dust mite shells, skin and excreta are what cause severe reactions.

A few simple housekeeping practices will keep dust mites under control and at manageable levels:

  • The most important and simplest is to ventilate your home often and let as much sunlight and natural light into your home as possible.
  • Remove clutter, especially in closed areas such as wardrobes and closets and remove cob webs that will catch and hold dust and debris.
  • Vacuum regularly, preferable with a vacuum cleaner fitted with a HEPA filter,” high-efficiency particulate absorption”.  These very fine filters will catch and contain the smallest of dust particles including dust mite excreta and skins.

This is the simplest method of removing these small, irritating particles from your home.

If allergies and associated problems persist, Moisture Cure has a range of Sharp Air Purifiers that will filter the air in your home.

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Mould! Do we need it?

If we do, how do we live with it?           Mould pic

If we don’t, how do we get rid of it?

Most people think of mould in negative terms, it smells, gets up your nose and has an ugly reputation.

Maybe this will enlighten you with some facts on what a truly marvellous living organism it is.

Are you aware, for instance, that moulds main purpose in existing at all is to eat and reproduce?  How cool would that be, sole purpose in life eating and mating.  I don’t think there’d be many who wouldn’t agree with me that this would have to be every mans ultimate dream job.

Alright, now I’ve got you thinking that mould isn’t all bad.

Mould is actually the most prolific living organism on earth; it makes up around 25% of the earth’s bio mass, and life as we know it today would not exist withoGraveut it.

Every living breathing growing thing, including animals, vegetables, plants, grass, fish, porcupines, (yes, you get the picture) will eventually die.  And what happens to us when we die, we go back to earth with a lot of help from mould.  Mould will eventually break down every living mass on the planet and rot it back to the earth.

Mould even plays a major part in keeping trees alive by bringing water to them.

A certain type of mould attaches itself to a tree and uses this tree as its host.  It then spreads in all directions seeking moisture.  Remember I said about the eating and reproducing, well, this is about the eating;  I’ll give you the juicy bits about the reproducing in a minute.

Ok, we have the tree, we have the mould attaching itself to the roots of the tree, and we have the mould spreading as much as a couple of hundred metres, seeking water. This water finds its way back to the tree via microscopic hollows in the mould and feeds the tree, a perfect parasitic relationship between the tree and mould.

You can see this relationship in action when you see a road or opening cut through the bush.  The road cuts a path through the trees and in doing so the long microscopic mould tentacles are broken, interrupting the supply of water.  Eventually the tree will wither and die through lack of water.

Mould is also very hardy, it has been discovered healthily growing under the ice in the Antarctic and in the Sahara Desert, mould is the ultimate survivor.  In fact mould has been around in its present form for more than 10 million years doing the same old thing… eating and reproducing.

In fact the reproducing part is just about the cleverest thing it does.

When you disturb the average boring old bit of mould it immediately thinks, “ah, I’m being attacked and I quickly need to guarantee I survive by sending ouMouldt microscopic spores”.  For simplicity we‘ll call these mould spores, another term is off gassing.

These mould spores float in the air current and are carried where ever the breeze blows them, until they land on a new source of nutrient that they can grow on and start the growth cycle all over again.

The other really interesting thing about their reproducing is during the life circle of mould they can actually change their sex, how convenient is that.

Even though we can’t live without mould in certain conditions, life is pretty uncomfortable trying to live with it.  Headaches, allergies mood swings, depression: these are just a few of the symptoms occupants of damp mouldy properties can suffer from.

In fact the Australian Institute of Architects has reported that up to 40% of Australian homes have a rising damp problem.

If you suspect you have a mould issue in your life, what can you do?

TSunwo of the most important things are: introduce plenty of natural sunlight and ensure you have adequate ventilation.

Also resist cleaning with bleach or chlorine as all these chemicals do is take the colour out of mould, the mould is still there but it’s now invisible.

Vinegar and water is more suitable and so is Aqua Magic, a chemically free, environmentally safe cleaning product.

You can see details about Aqua Magic on our OTHER PRODUCTS page.

If the problem still persists, invest some time with a mould and dampness remediation company, such as Moisture Cure.

 

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Do you have a damp subfloor?

Sometimes you will find your subfloor is damp and mould and mildew and other nasties are growing there.  If you have dampness in your subfloor this can have some impact inside your home, but is not always the main cause.

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As a general rule we tend to treat the subfloor of your home as a separate issue from the inside of your home and work on both as individual problems.

Dampness in your subfloor, though is really not a lot different than dampness inside your home, one of the main causes is lack of adequate ventilation and of course, lack of sunshine.

In your subfloor you can’t do much about the sunshine issue but we can work with the ventilation problems.

The first thing we suggest you can do is check to see if you have in fact got any air vents to let air in.  If you haven’t we suggest you start by maybe installing a few. Pretty simple, but hey, this could solve your problems.

Most homes have these vents installed when being built, but often they are covered by plants, shrubs and even footpaths being built too high and blocking air flow.

Overgrown shrubs1

Clear shrubs and plants and realign or lower your foot path if need be. What you are trying to do, is let some air in and give your subfloor a chance to dry.

Another easy and practical way to achieve air flow is to open the subfloor access door or even replace it with a mesh door that allows air to flow under your home.

If after you have cleared your subfloor vents and they are pulling air in and under your home, as they should be, and your subfloor is still damp, we suggest the next step to take is installing some form of powered ventilation.

We recommend two methods, either the Ecofan powered ventilation system or a ducted inline extraction system.

They both work in a similar way, drawing fresh clean air in through the existing vents, and expelling stale damp air through another.

Where practical, we recommend the CSR Edmonds Ecofan for most domestic installations.  These are simple to install, comes complete with all fittings and instructions and will cost no more than $15 per year to run.

Ecofan double pic

These units can be installed by a competent handy person, or you can arrange Moisture Cure for a professional installation.

If you send Moisture Cure a sketch or better still a photo or two, we will pinpoint the right position to install and also give you some helpful installation hints.

The ducted inline extraction system is a little more complicated and is custom designed for each application.  Our team of technicians will professionally install these systems, usually within the day and most homes will begin to feel the benefits immediately.

DSCF2696We recommend the system be allowed to run continuously for a month or two, then a timer can be fitted.  Most customers run the system during the day, and then program it to turn off automatically at night.

However, if your subfloor is particularly damp, run the system continuously for up to three months to allow your home to fully dry, and then fit a simple timer to automatically turn off at night.

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What Can Be Done About Outdoor Mould?

Wet and ForgetWith all the dampness around our customers have been asking us what to use to clean the mould and mildew from outside their homes.

We came across a product called Wet and Forget five years ago and right from the word go this product has been very popular.

Our customers love it!

W&F11

Simple to use, just dilute 5:1, spray on and leave – it starts working immediately and continues to work every time it rains for 18 months or more.

Wet and forget can be used on a multitude of surfaces, including awnings, concrete, pebblecrete footpaths and driveways, weather boards, barbeques, roof tiles and heaps more.

Like the label says,  Wet and Forget, Let nature do the rest.

Go to Wet & Forget product pages

Go to Frequently Asked Questions

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What can I do about mould in my home?

If you discover mould, mildew and dampness in your homSune, you can take some satisfaction in knowing you are not alone.

Lots of family homes, units, and villa’s, townhouses, old and new, have this problem.

So, at least you know you are not alone, with a little knowledge we can give you, you can improve your situation.

First of all, we should make one thing clear; mould will establish itself and live very happily in all types of homes.

You can have mould and mildew growing in your home for a number of reasons, but it does not discriminate, it will grow wherever it gets a chance.

However, we have found two of the prime causes of mould and mildew growing is lack of ventilation and insufficient sunlight.

Two sure fire ways of fixing your problem for good are:

1. remove your entire roof and allow sunshine to stream in, and

2. Remove all your walls and allow your home to be FULLY ventilated.

Of course both these methods are impractical and impossible to achieve, but I think it clearly explains the situation you have found yourself trying to fix.

You can’t remove your roof, but hey, you can open your curtains and blinds and let as much sunshine stream into your home.  As far as removing your walls, well, you know that is just as hard, but what about opening your windows and doors and letting lot’s of fresh air into your home?

Just letting more fresh air and sunshine into your home is probably the most important two things you can do for the health of your home and your family.

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What size dehumidifier do I need?

With dehumidifiers, size does matter.  With lot’s to choose from, this is what we mean by choosing the right size unit.Research

Select a dehumidifier with poor moisture extraction and you will probably need two, three or even more.

Choose the correct size for your needs, and quite often one is adequate.

Buying a dehumidifier is no different than any other expensive item, you need to do a little homework and seek out reputable resellers that know about different extraction rates, have some history with these products and have some industry knowledge.

Moisture Cure has prided themselves on finding solutions for Australian homes and businesses for nearly 14 years. 

 

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