How to Keep You and Your Pets Cool in Extreme Heat

July 22, 2011

So, the forecast today is in the triple-digits. Yes, we still live in Boston.

Keep these tips in mind as you make your way through today.

1. Don’t shy from turning on your air conditioners.

2. Drink NON-alcoholic beverages. Alcohol dehydrates you. Stay hydrated.

3. Wear appropriate clothing. That means no turtlenecks.

4. Schedule outdoor activities so they are in the morning or late afternoon, avoiding the heat of the day.

5. Monitor those at risk of heat-related illness (adults over 65 & children).

6. Do NOT leave children or pets in cars.

7. Limit sun exposure.

8. If possible, stay inside.

[SOURCE: CDC Extreme Heat Guide]

MOLD. Not afraid? Well, it’s time you learn a thing or two.

July 8, 2011

Sorry this photo is so disgusting... but mold is never attractive.

Mold is gross. We see it mostly on old bread. But what makes mold bad news? Well, if you have an outbreak like in the photo to the right, things get expensive really fast. Let’s take a minute to understand what we are dealing with.

Mold can be caused by…

  • Poor attic ventilation or vents exhausting into the attic
  • Chimney leakage
  • Improper air conditioning installation
  • Improper installation of attic insulation
  • Weatherproofing of doors/windows
  • Improper installation of shower stalls
  • Water intrusion through exterior walls
  • Basement drainage problems
Mold’s favorite place to hang out is…
  • Under sinks & Around showers and tubs
  • Under and behind washing equipment
  • Under and behind refrigerators
  • Behind and below water heaters
  • Around the perimeter of the basement & structure
  • In crawl spaces
  • Above ceiling tiles
  • Walls around windows/doors
How to kick Mold to the curb…
  • Fix leaks and seepage issues
  • Ventilate your crawl-spaces; Actually ventilate everything else properly too
  • Use exhaust fans to ventilate appliances like your dryer or rooms like the bathroom and kitchen
  • Use dehumidifiers and air conditions to reduce the moisture in the air
  • Leave doors in your home open so air can move freely. Keep some windows open so air can also flow out.
So Mold is in my house… what do I do?
  • Clean up visible mold.
  • Replace the board and fix the water problem.
  • Remove visible mold with soapy water, dry thoroughly and repaint.
  • As long as you’ve fixed the water issue, the mold will not come back.
  • If there is excessive mold, you have to bring in the professionals.