What is condensation
Condensation happens when moisture in warm air comes into contact with a cold surface and turns into water droplets.
What causes condensation
Moisture is created by every day domestic activities such as cooking, bathing, washing and drying clothes. All these activities have an accumulative affect and the moisture is kept buoyant by heat within the property. As soon as the air temperature falls below the dew point (approximately 14 degrees centigrade) the air is unable to support the amount of moisture in the atmosphere. The moisture condenses as water on cold surfaces, usually single-glazed windows and outside walls. It can also condense in areas where there is insufficient air circulation such as behind furniture and cupboards. Unless the excess water is removed from surfaces it will quickly turn to mould.
Ways to control condensation
Three ways to alleviate the problem of condensation is to ensure adequate heating and
ventilation along with reducing the amount of moisture created and allowed to circulate.
· During the winter and at other cold times of the year maintain a constant temperature, avoid sudden rises and drops in air temperature
· Make sure there is adequate insulation
· Leave window trickle vents open where fitted
· Do not block air-brick vents
· Do not over fill cupboards and wardrobes
· Move furniture away from external walls by at least 50mm
· When sleeping avoid shutting bedroom doors
· Open windows in warmer weather
· When cooking, use lids on pots, pans and turn on extractor hood/extractor fans along with the opening of kitchen windows
· Turn on extractor fans and open windows when having a bath or shower
· Dry washing outside; if this is not possible dry them in a cooler area of the flat or keep them in a bathroom with the door closed and windows open
· Consider using a dehumidifier to reduce the amount of water in the atmosphere
· When people come in with wet coats, hang them outside the living area to dry
· When using a tumble dryer, make sure it is vented to the outside (unless it’s a condensing dryer).
Below are examples of just how much moisture is produced by typical household activities.
Two people at homes – 3 pints
Washing clothes - 1 pint
Drying cloth indoors – 9 pints
Having a bath or shower – 2 pints
Cooking and use of a kettle – 6 pints
Aspire Block and Estate Management – 01923 372169