Every home has condensation. Condensation causes damp. It’s very common.

Sometimes damp can be caused by a problem with the building but most of the time it is condensation.

Condensation is like having a guest you don’t want.

It usually turns up in winter when the windows are shut and the heating is turned on. Here’s how to chuck it out.

 

Mouldy

Mouldy is a helpful video which will explain how to prevent damp and mould.

 

Be careful in winter

In winter we close windows to save money on heating bills, which makes sense.

But, if your home is completely shut no air can get in or out. All the steam and moisture we make from cooking, showering, bathing, drying clothes or even breathing, stays in your home. It has nowhere to go.

When it hits a cold wall, window frame or ceiling it can cause damp and mould patches. It doesn’t have to be raining outside or even that cold, it can happen in any home.

  

The 12 (short) steps to get rid of condensation in your home

  • Open a window a tiny bit when you’re cooking, having a bath or shower. 
  • Got a tumble dryer? Where does the vent pipe go? If it’s inside, all that water from your wet clothes will be pumped straight back into your home. Use the vent pipe properly.
  • Dry your clothes outside – never put them on radiators or heaters. If you can’t dry them outside, dry them in the bathroom with the door shut and window open (or the fan running).
  • Leave your radiators clear of furniture, curtains and clothes – let them breathe!
  • Cover your pots and pans when cooking
  • Reduce steam by putting cold water in before the hot when you run a bath or fill a sink
  • Wipe wetness off your windows and window ledges with a dry cloth – if you leave it will turn into mould. Yuck.
  • Don’t use bottled gas, paraffin or propane heaters- they can make up to six litres of moisture a day!
  • Air bricks and window vents are there for a reason. They let air in and out – don’t block them up.
  • Clear out your wardrobes and cupboards; mildew (a type of mould) will grow in places stuffed full of clothes.
  • Steam from kitchens or bathrooms will creep into other rooms – fit a draught excluder on the doors to stop this happening.
  • Got an extractor fan? Make sure it’s on! It’s not expensive to run. It costs less to run it for a year than it does for a couple of tins of baked beans.

 

 

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Keep it on long and low. That’s our advice. Having it on really hot for short periods of time is just what condensation loves. Use the thermostats in your home – they’re there for a reason - 21c for living rooms and 18c for the bedrooms. 

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Check for:

• Damaged seals around baths and showers
• Leaking high level gutters, overflow pipes and rain water pipes.
• Leaking pipework
• Leaks coming from roof - missing slates or tiles can be seen from ground level
• Blocked gutters - water spilling over on a regular basis or splattering against the walls
• Downpipes – holes in the back/water escaping
• Penetration around window frames
• Cracks to external walls
• Blocked vents, extractor fans
• Rising damp due to either defective or no damp-course.

If you see any of the above tell us – we’ll come and have a look.

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Do the 12 steps to get rid of condensation.

What else can I do?

Mould is all around us, and needs food to grow. Mould likes to eat leaves, wood, paper, dirt and water. Mould can be really bad and can harm.

The number one cause of mould in homes today is not heating your home properly and condensation.

If you have mould on a washable surface, clean it off as soon as it appears. Use a fungicidal solution (you can get it from most DIY stores). Always follow the instructions. Clean it off or it will keep coming back.

Once you’ve washed it off you can get special paint from DIY shops which help to stop it re-growing but it might not work as well if you’re painting on wallpaper or another normal paint.
Don’t hoover or brush the mould – this can spread it.

If you’ve got mildew on clothes get them dry cleaned. If it’s on your carpet, shampoo them.

If you’re doing all of these things and you’ve still got mould after 10 days, contact us and we will come and have a look.