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When condensation forms in the home, it can ruin interior decoration, cause an unpleasant smell and provide a source of sustenance for mould on walls. Additionally, a condensation problem can indicate that the air quality in a home is inadequate, something which can have a negative impact on your health and so should not be ignored. Typically, homes which suffer the effects of condensation also experience some form of black mould growth. You’re more likely to have seen this in a bathroom or kitchen, but it can occur almost anywhere in the home, given the right conditions. You need condensation treatment.
At Allerton Damp Proofing, we are specialists in the diagnosis of condensation and the measuring of internal air quality; on this page you’ll find more useful information on condensation and mould treatment services that we provide in these areas, including information about mould on walls and mould treatment.
What causes condensation?
If you have condensation in your home, it is more than likely that a combination of high humidity and cold internal surfaces are causing the problem, rather than one or the other. The common causes of each of these can be found below.
Condensation is the formation of airborne water vapour on surfaces. The amount of water vapour in any given air sample is indicated by its Relative Humidity (RH) value. As humidity increases, so does the likelihood of condensation. Air inside a property can increase in humidity as a result of a number of different factors, which can include:
Water vapour is more likely to condense if it collides with a colder surface, hence cold walls are susceptible to condensation. The common causes of walls becoming colder than desired are:
Mould on walls
High humidity, condensation and mould on walls go hand in hand. Black mould from condensation is unpleasant, unsightly and can be hazardous to health. Mould on walls can lead to long-term respiratory problems, such as the development of asthma, and immune problems, making you more suseptible to illess. As such, humidity and condensation, which leads to mould on walls, should be tackled as soon as possible. Additionally, high humidity can cause wet and dry rot fungus to grow and spread through a home. When this occurs, the humidity and condensation problems should be addressed urgently as these conditions can render any timber weak and liable to collapse. In addition to mould on walls, the effects of humidity and condensation include:
Condensation and Mould Treatment
Tackling condensation requires a persistent and determined approach. Firstly, changes to your lifestyle might assist somewhat in reducing condensation, but it is likely that other technical interventions will be required to assist in the general reduction of the problem. As part of our full service condensation works, we can:
Air Quality Treatment
Why it matters
Maintaining the humidity of the air in your home at the correct level not only reduces the risk that condensation will form in your home, it has many other benefits too. These benefits are set out in the table below, which you can use as a guide to compare how your home fares.
If you suffer from any of the ailments in the table or if your home is affected by any of the problems listed, it is worth checking whether this is due to an internal air problem in your home. We can report to you on this and make the necessary changes to your home to bring you the benefits of ideal air quality.
“Why is condensation common in the kitchen?”
ANSWER: A great deal of water vapour is created in our kitchens. Whether it’s the boiling of pans, running the tumble dryer or making a cup of tea, the kitchen takes the brunt of our daily creation of water vapour. That water vapour adds to the Relative Humidity of the internal atmosphere of the kitchen, which then settles on cool surfaces such as windows or wall as condensation.
“Is leaving the heating on all day condensation treatment?”
ANSWER: The use of heating to keep rooms warmer can assist in reducing condensation. However, aside from this being expensive and harmful to the environment, it doesn’t cure the causes of the problem. Condensation occurs as a result of humid air meeting cool surfaces; in heating a room, you keep the surfaces warmer and keep the water vapour in the air, rather than allowing it to form on the surfaces. A combination of good ventilation and insulation might prove a more economical solution.
“I dry clothes on radiators, does that cause condensation?”
ANSWER: Yes, absolutely it can. Letting clothes dry openly in your home can release pints of water vapour into the air in your home. That water vapour will then settle (condense) when it collides with a cool surface. If that condensation regularly occurs, mould growth will follow.
The alternative is to dry clothes outdoors or use a tumble dryer of which there are two kinds; ventilated and condenser. A ventilated tumble dryer expels the humid air directly out of the property, whereas a condenser condenses the humid air into a reservoir inside the dryer. As some water vapour almost always escapes from a condenser dryer, it is normally preferable to use a vented model, but this necessitates an accessible vent being installed in an external wall. In any event, using a tumble dryer of any kind will normally be preferable to drying your clothes openly, either on radiators or clothes stands.