The heat and humidity of Australian summers can be a deadly combination for home interiors as these conditions provide the perfect trigger for mould attacks.

With mould playing havoc in Australian households, especially on wardrobes, floors, ceilings and walls, natural lighting and ventilation specialist, Solatube Australia is urging householders to ‘break the mould’ and tackle the issue head on with ‘air and light’.

Not only does mould damage the house, it also has a serious health impact on the occupants.

“This summer’s prolonged hot and humid weather in many parts of the country, not to mention the recent heavy rains, have created the perfect conditions to trigger mould growth in homes,” says Solatube’s Brett Dickson.

“While the current conditions can accelerate this, mould can actually grow at any time of the year indoors when there is poor ventilation, rising damp or a water leak.

“All types of mould have the potential to cause health problems; according to the NSW Department of Health, the key to preventing its growth is to maintain a dry, well-ventilated home.”

Solatube has a solution: Solar Star is a solar-powered roof ventilation system designed to create a cooler, drier home by removing heat and moisture from the roof cavity without adding to the energy bill or compromising the safety and security of the residents.

“More energy efficient homes, with less temperature fluctuations and better quality insulation, are likely to have less mould incidents,” explains Dickson.

“You may be running your fans, dehumidifier and air-conditioning unit to cool and dry your home to reduce mould growth, but heat and moisture continue to come down from your ceiling, which hinders your efforts and costs you money.”

The damaging effects of mould on our health and homes

Microscopic airborne spores from mould inhaled by anyone sensitive or allergic to them can cause serious respiratory problems. NSW Health warns that people with asthma, allergies or other breathing conditions may be more sensitive to mould and those with weakened immune systems or chronic lung diseases are more at risk of mould infection. Allergic reactions to mould can include a running or blocked nose, cough, irritated eyes and skin, and wheezing, and for anyone with a respiratory problem such as asthma, inhaled spores can trigger an asthma attack.

Additionally, mould, which often appears as black, green or white patches, is unsightly, can give off an unpleasant musty odour and is often costly and difficult to remove. Vinegar, mild soap and bleach can effectively kill mould; however, as mould roots can penetrate absorbent materials such as carpets, soft furnishings and clothing, professional cleaning may be required or the exposed materials may need to be discarded.

The pioneer of tubular daylighting systems, Solatube is a leading manufacturer of tubular skylights, LED lighting and roof ventilation systems.