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Understanding Dampness & Condensation

As your landlord, we are responsible for maintaining the structure of your home along with the plumbing, heating and electrics. It is your responsibility to make sure the property is taken care of and kept in a clean and tidy condition.

Is your home damp?

Damp can cause mould on walls and furniture. Damp housing encourages the growth of mould and mites and can increase the risk of respiratory illness.

Some damp is caused by condensation, which can be minimised by following the guidelines following this section of the home guide. 

What is condensation?

There is always some moisture in the air, even if you cannot see it. When the warmer moist air comes into contact with a cool surface, water droplets form. 

When this happens on your window, the glass mists up and drops of water run down the window. When it happens on a wall, the wall soaks up the moisture and becomes damp. Mould could then grow on the damp areas.

Where does condensation come from?

Your body produces moisture all the time, when you breathe and perspire. In fact, the average person produces 0.85 litres of moisture per day through breathing alone. We also put lots of moisture into the air when we take a bath or shower, cook or wash the dishes. 

Moisture is also produced when we dry clothes indoors or use an non-vented tumble dryer. 

Bottled gas heaters produce large amounts of moisture into the air. This moist air travels through your home and when it comes into contact with a cool surface it will condense and turn to water.

Where can condensation happen?

Condensation happens on cold surfaces and in places where there is little movement of air. It often appears as a dark patch in corners near the skirting and on the ceiling.

Areas with poor ventilation can be prone to condensation. This could be behind furniture; particularly wardrobes, beds drawers and even clothing if they have been placed against an outside wall. Condensation can happen in any room but it is most likely to occur in your bathroom, bedrooms and hallway as they are generally cooler.

Moisture in the form of condensation is most commonly found in bathrooms and is easily seen on tiles. To prevent mould, open the window after bathing or showering, wipe the tiles down and close the door.

How can the mould be removed?

Mould can be easy to remove using a disposable cloth and some household cleaner, there is no need to use strong chemicals. Wipe over the area again every few days using diluted household cleaner to stop the mould growing back. 

How can condensation be prevented?

To help reduce the risk of condensation in your home:

  • Keep a window open when drying clothes indoors; don’t dry clothes over warm radiators
  • Keep the kitchen door closed when cooking
  • Keep lids on pots and pans when cooking
  • Keep the bathroom door closed when running a bath and bathing
  • Open the bathroom window when finished bathing
  • Don’t overfill cupboards and wardrobes – make sure air can circulate
  • If you have an extractor fan in the kitchen and bathroom make sure to use it
  • If your home has been fitted with a whole house ventilation system make sure it remains switched on
  • Don’t keep furniture and wardrobes hard against walls – make sure air can circulate
  • Keep your heating on low throughout the day in cold weather to maintain a background heat
  • Avoid using bottle gas heaters as they produce a lot of moisture
  • Adequately heat and ventilate rooms at risk
  • When using an unvented tumble dryer, make sure the hose is put out the window or door.