Molds are found in virtually every environment and can thrive in warm, humid places. Houston is known for its humidity and heat. Therefore, moisture control, proper use of thermostats to allow for air circulation, and basic housekeeping practices are necessary to control the growth of mold and mildew.
How to Prevent Mold and Mildew
Basic housekeeping practices (vacuum floors, wipe down counters, clean up spills, wipe the inside and outside of refrigerators, etc.) should be shared by all roommates to help reduce the potential for mold growth.
To help prevent the growth of mold and mildew in residential spaces, it is essential that resident students do the following:
- Keep windows closed
- Set thermostats, year-round, between 72 to 76 °F (22 to 24 °C)
- In suites and apartments, keep bathroom doors closed while showering and run the exhaust fan in the bathroom for at least thirty minutes.
- Keep air vents unobstructed
- Hang wet towels or clothing to allow them to dry
- Keep all surfaces, furniture and clothing dry
- In suites and apartments, routinely clean bathroom areas to prevent the growth of soap scum or buildup of mildew (Community bathrooms are cleaned daily and deep cleaned monthly by custodial staff)
- Report any water problems (leaks, dripping faucets, wet carpet, drips heard behind the air intake cover, etc.) immediately by submitting a Service Request to Facilities and Operations
How to Respond When You See Mold or Mildew
- If you see a little pink substance around the bottom of your shower curtain, a little black substance on your windowsill or other possible mold growth, don’t panic. Mold or mildew growth is generally not a cause for concern. Clean the area with hot soapy water or other commonly used household disinfectant as soon as you see the first signs of mold or mildew.
- Check the area to determine if the housekeeping practices listed above are not being followed or should be improved. Not following these guidelines may cause excess moisture to build up inside residential spaces and lead to the growth of mold or mildew.
- If you see mold or mildew in the building, immediately submit a Facility Maintenance Request via FixIt and notify the Residence Life Coordinator of their community.
How the University Responds to Reported Incidents of Mold
If students have followed the guidelines above and continue to see mold or mildew growth or if they feel that a mechanical issue is the cause, submit a Facility Maintenance Request via FixIt and notify the Residence Life Coordinator of their community.
Appropriate staff will respond and take measures to correct the problem as quickly as possible.
Upon resolving the cause of the excessive moisture, measures will be taken to thoroughly clean and dry the area affected. This work may be completed by University staff and/or an outside contractor.