Narrator: This is Science Today. According to a report on damp indoor spaces and health by the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences, about 12% of American homes have water leaks around outdoors and another five to ten percent have water leaks from indoors. Bill Fisk, head of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory's Indoor Environment Department, was part of the committee that released this report.
Fisk : There's a lot of ways that buildings get moist. You can have water leaks from plumbing, water leaks from outdoors, moisture coming in below grade, you can very high moisture generation indoors, continuous cooking and not much ventilation with outdoor air.
Narrator: Damp indoor spaces may cause mold growth, which has been linked to a variety of respiratory problems. So Fisk says homeowners should take action if they notice a moisture problem.
Fisk: So if you have a roof leak, you should immediately try to get the roof leak repaired and better yet, replace your roof if you can financially before it starts leaking.
Narrator: For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.