Avoiding Garage Mold
LESLIE: Mark in Virginia is dealing with a very moist garage. Tell us about the problem.MARK: Yes. I have mold in my garage. It’s due to standing water on the outside. Came home from a business trip and come inside to cut the grass; I grab my work boots and they’re all covered with mold. Since then, I called the landscaper and he’s going to be regrading the yard to put soil around the house to push the water away. We also talked about putting plastic downspouts under the ground and carry it our further away from the house.TOM: Well, those are two very good things because you do want to move the water away from the house. Make sure, if he adds soil, that it’s not topsoil because landscapers love to put too much topsoil around the house. The grading improvement should be made with clean fill dirt, not topsoil. You can put a little bit of topsoil on top of it but the grade has to be made with clean fill dirt. If you put too much topsoil around it, basically it’s going to do the opposite and, Mark, it’s going to hold water around the house. You don’t want that to happen.So those are two things to do. Have you cleaned up the mold that you found in the garage?MARK: I am in the process of doing it and that is a very timely experience, I tell you that.TOM: Yep.MARK: I’ve thrown away a lot of cardboard boxes.TOM: Yeah.MARK: Just using plastic bins right now.TOM: (overlapping voices) Right, well that’s all mold food.LESLIE: (overlapping voices) Yeah, and that’s the best thing.MARK: Oh, OK.TOM: (overlapping voices) Yeah, you don’t want to …LESLIE: (overlapping voices) Anything that’s a natural fiber. Fabrics, papers, cardboard – which are typically things that you store items in – are terrible in a high-moisture situation. And once you get a good system with those plastic bins, you’ll be able to see everything that’s in them; be super-organized, which is great for an extra space like this.MARK: OK. Awesome. That’s great.TOM: Alright?MARK: Awesome. Alright. Well, I want to thank you very much. My wife and I love listening to your show. We think it’s awesome.TOM: Thanks, Mark.LESLIE: Well, thank you so much.TOM: Good luck with that project. Thanks so much for calling us at 1-888-MONEY-PIT.