Condensation is the most common form of “dampness” within UK properties.
The main moisture producing rooms in most households are the kitchen, bathroom and utility room. These areas are what are known as “prime sources” of moisture production which leads to condensation. It can be relatively simple to manage the moisture produced in these rooms through the installation of extractor fans – ideally humidity tracking fans as these will sense moisture and begin to extract without the need for switching them on.
The other contributors to moisture within your home are what are know as “sub prime” sources of moisture. Here is a list of some of the usual suspects:
Drying clothes on radiators, indoor clothes lines/dryers. Up to 1500g of moisture is released into the atmosphere from the average washing machine load when dried indoors on a dryer or on a radiator.
Drying clothes on or by a radiator is in my experience one of the worst offenders in contributing to indoor humidity particularly in houses of multiple occupancy.
Tumble dryers should be self-condensing. If not they must be vented through an external wall to exhaust the moist air.
A 15 minute shower will release around 600g of moisture and modern high pressure systems will no doubt add to this figure. Cooking with gas or electricity can release up to and over a whopping 3000g of moisture!
Quite often I have visited properties where the only form of moisture management in the kitchen is a cooker hood fan mounted to the wall but not actually connected to an external ventilation point. In such instances, consideration should be given to creating an exhaust to the external. This essentially means knocking a hole in the wall which of course is not always feasible. As well as being messy and disruptive, the resulting ducting can look unsightly. Unless you are planning on installing a new kitchen, a humidity tracking fan would be a more cost effective option.
These are just a few examples of circumstances that contribute to condensation. Its causation and control is not about one particular subject but many, some of which I will be looking at in future blog posts.