Condensation 101- what you need to know
Streaming water on your windows? It’s hardly surprising – condensation is common in most homes, especially during the winter months. Condensation is the change of water from gaseous vapour to liquid water, and this unwanted dampness can cause lots of issues for properties. Older properties tend not to have Damp-Proof Course, leaving them susceptible to damp, but even modern properties can be affected as double glazing and insulation prevent natural ventilation which causes condensation.
What causes it?
An imbalance in the ventilation and heating issues often lead to there being too much moisture in the air. When water in the air meets cold surfaces like windows and walls, which are at dew point where it changes from vapour to a liquid, which is deposited on these surfaces.
This excess moisture is a result of simple day-to-day activities of occupants; everything from showering to drying your clothes adds to the humidity - even breathing can produce 2 litres of water a day.
Why is it so negative?
The water on your windows and walls can cause dampness and mould which can be damaging to your property, clothes and furnishings. The extent of mould damage depends on how much water the surface can hold.
In fact, 70% of damp problems are caused by condensation. An unsightly, mouldy property can become an expense quickly when you have to redecorate. In more extreme cases it can result in fungal decay such as Dry rot affecting the timbers.
Not only does it damage your property, The Housing Health and Safety Rating System identifies damp and mould as one of the 24 hazards that could cause risk or harm to the health and safety of occupants. This can lead to health problems being trigger or aggravated, including asthma.
What can be done to prevent it?
An environment needs to be created where dampness is reduced to a manageable level. Ensuring you have good ventilation and air quality without external pollutants is the best way to avoid mould and dampness taking over your home.
Making small steps to reduce the moisture that is in your home can lessen the situation; drying clothes outside, keeping doors shut when showering and opening windows when cooking can all help reduce the humidity levels in your property. Intermittent heating tends to contribute to the problem but keeping your heating on consistently at a low temperature can help to combat the issue.
It is difficult to avoid most of these activities as part of our modern lives and elements of our properties that we can’t live without such as insulation all contribute to the problem. Olympic Construction can install positive input prevention units (PIV) from the Nuaire Dri Eco Range that can be installed into existing homes with little disturbance.
This introduces a fresh supply of fresh air into the property to dilute and replace the contaminated air, creating a healthier living environment.
Indoor air quality and mould reduction systems can be put in place following an inspection by one of our qualified surveyors, to the real cause of the dampness is not overlooked and internal environment is balanced.
What if I already have mould?
Not all hope is lost – Olympic Construction can remove unsightly mould and staining. It depends on the level of mould contamination and nature of the building. This means a qualified surveyor is needed to establish the extent of the mould.
Olympic Construction have been curing condensation problems for over 25 years and have a number of cost effective solutions for both homeowners and landlords, ensuring your property stays protected and your health isn’t being negatively affected by it.