Condensation damp and mould
If you have noticed dark spots appearing in some areas of your house, such as walls, ceilings, which gradually increase, then you have a condensation dampness problem.
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The first thing you must do is determine the origin, and if it comes from condensation, then continue reading and we will tell you the necessary keys to nip it in the bud.
Solutions to dampness by condensation are at the origin
Cleaning the stains and repainting the affected area only works as a temporary fix, because before you know it, they will reappear as if nothing had happened.
To eliminate condensation dampness you must first know that it is caused by excess water vapour concentrated in the interior of your home.
This steam, naturally, when it saturates the air will look for the coolest surface to stick to and will condense to form small drops of water.
What you need to investigate urgently is what is causing the steam in order to solve the condensation problem.
Causes of damp by condensation on walls, windows and ceilings
The causes are usually multiple, most of them having to do with our own daily habits, so we will list the most common of them:
- Lack of ventilation. The house may not have enough windows, the windows it has do not facilitate air circulation or they are simply obstructed by curtains, furniture or vegetation.
- Drying the clothes inside. The humidity of the clothes will remain in the environment, and if it is not ventilated it will end up on any surface. This is even worse if you dry them near the radiators.
- The shower. Taking a bath without opening a window will build up steam inside the room, the best evidence of this is the fogged-up mirror and wet doorknob.
- The kitchen. Something as everyday as food preparation will saturate the air with moisture in any closed environment. Every time you boil any liquid, be it water, sauces or soup, the steam will stay in the air until it finds a place to condense.
- Use of hair dryers and thermal hair straighteners. It is very easy to see all the steam coming out while using the hair dryer.
- Our own existence. An adult living alone can generate up to 2.5 liters of water per day, this figure must be multiplied by each person in the family nucleus.
- Lack of thermal insulation of the house. Modern buildings have this type of insulation that allows the interior temperature to be maintained despite environmental variations. Older structures were not built with this insulation, consequently they are very cold in winter and extremely hot in summer, the lack of capacity of the structure to conserve energy causes high concentrations of steam inside.
How to remove and repair condensation damp
First, let’s solve the problem of origin. To eliminate condensation humidity, we must start by improving the ventilation of the home.
As far as possible, open the windows at least once a day to allow the air to be renewed and the steam to escape.
Ventilation is the key in wet areas.
Open the windows to avoid excess humidity in the house.
A window should be opened when using the shower or during food preparation. In the case of the shower it is important to open the window and close the door to keep the humidity limited to the bathroom. In the kitchen it is convenient to keep the pots covered while the food is hot.
As long as you can, it’s best to dry your clothes outdoors. If you can’t, then do it in a room with the door closed, but with a window open to let the air circulate.
Dehumidifiers or thermal insulation?
Condensation on the walls, as well as in the ceilings, corners, inside the wardrobes, can be solved with thermal insulation.
If you cannot afford such a thing, dehumidifiers are very effective, you will soon notice the difference when installing them.
Avoid having furniture attached to the walls, make sure there is a space of about 4 to 5 centimetres for air to circulate.
In the cold season it is best to use the heating at the lowest possible intensity, when the air that is generated by heating is very hot when you turn it off, it creates a large amount of steam that will end up in the corners.
Condensation stains can be removed
Once the original problem has been solved, the horrible black stains on the walls and ceilings remain to be removed.
It is important that you take special care in this task because that, more than an ugly stain, is mold, and the spores it releases are harmful to health, especially to children, the elderly and asthmatics.
Use a fungicide product, spray it on the stain and wait five minutes. This time will be more than enough for the active ingredient to penetrate the porosity of the surface and kill the fungus at its roots.
Breathable interior anti-humidity paint is finally a solution for renewing the clean appearance of your spaces.
With the walls well cleaned, and the area where the stain was disinfected, a layer of colour will give your home a new look.
Does the household insurance cover the repair of condensing humidity?
It is best to check with your insurance advisor to find out if your homeowner’s policy covers condensation repair.
Almost all agree to cover damage caused by damp from leaks and blockages, as well as damage caused by flooding due to its sudden and unavoidable nature, but they are limited in terms of coverage for other types of damp.
Check the clauses of your policy so that you know what you are entitled to and what you are not entitled to, because if it is caused by poor or non-existent thermal insulation in your home, you may be.