GALLATIN, TN--(Marketwire - May 20, 2010) -  When thinking about the safety of one's home, initial thoughts turn to smoke detectors or child-proof measures such as safety locks on kitchen cabinets. Rarely do people think about the quality of their indoor air, said Rick Isaacson, executive vice president of SERVPRO Industries, Inc, the emergency restoration franchise business.

In recognition of Home Safety Month this June, Isaacson is explaining why individuals should make addressing air quality a top priority and safety measure in their homes. Mold is one potential air quality problem.

"Every year about 40 pounds of dust are generated per 1,500 square feet in a home. Most types of mold grow quickly if they have a water source, an organic food source and temperatures between 60 and 86 degrees Fahrenheit," Isaacson said.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has noted that moisture and mold problems in buildings may result in health issues. Isaacson recommends people take the following Healthy Home Checklist regarding indoor air:

  • Do you smoke in your home?
  • Do your kitchen, bathroom and laundry room have ventilation and exhaust fans?
  • Do you change your air filters once a month?
  • When cleaning or doing laundry, do you use bleach ammonia or aerosol spray cans?
  • Is your gas fireplace and/or gas stove checked yearly for emissions?
  • Was your home built before 1978? If so, has it been checked for lead-based paint?
  • Do your bathrooms have carpet where moisture and dust can build up?

If you have answered "yes" to any of these questions, you may want to consider taking the following steps:

  • Correct water leaks or standing water.
  • Remove standing water under cooling coils or air handling units.
  • Replace washing machine hoses with steel mesh lines.
  • Move large objects away from the walls to provide good air circulation.
  • Use exhaust fans in the bathroom, kitchens and laundry rooms.
  • Properly maintain humidifiers, if any.
  • Replace wet or visibly moldy insulation and carpet materials.
  • Have dirty ducts cleaned by a professional.

Many SERVPRO franchises have trained professionals who inspect HVAC systems and ductwork. For more information, visit