What is condensation?
Condensation starts as moisture in the air which then turns into water droplets when it comes into contact with a cold surface. It usually occurs when you’re cooking, drying clothes indoors or showering/bathing.
The most obvious sign of condensation is mist on your windows.
Why is it a problem?
Condensation is the most common cause of damp and mould in buildings. Damp is unhealthy and smelly and can encourage the growth of mould and mites, which often looks like a cloud of little black dots.
How to reduce condensation in your home
- Produce less moisture - keep lids on pans when cooking, only boil as much water as you need in the kettle, dry your clothes outdoors (and especially not on radiators), and make sure your tumble dryer has a vent to the outside.
- Let moist air out by opening a window or using your extractor fan if you have one. Keep your bathroom door shut when taking a bath or shower to stop moisture escaping into the rest of the house, and open a window to let it out instead.
- Let fresh air circulate around your home by making sure there's a gap between your furniture and the walls, and give wardrobes and cupboards a good airing sometimes.
- Cold rooms are more likely to get damp and mould. Set the thermostatic radiator valve to 1 in unused rooms to give out a little bit of heat, or if you don’t have central heating consider using a room heater with a timer and temperature control. Any room you don't use often will need a good airing from time to time.
Getting rid of mould
If there's mould on your walls, ceiling or window sills then it needs to be cleaned off properly.
Start by cleaning off the mould with a spray containing bleach; this will help remove the staining that persistent mould can leave behind. Leave to dry overnight and then spray the area with an anti-fungal wash and allow that to dry. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions and consider wearing a face mask when spraying.
For more info and advice, download our factsheet on condensation or get in touch and ask for our free information pack and DVD on controlling condensation and mould in your home.