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Condensation and Ventilation

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With government launched energy efficiency initiatives such as the Green Deal, offering households incentives to install double-glazing and insulation, a growing number of homes in the UK are significantly more energy efficient than in the past.

This is great news obviously, and as we move towards the winter months many people who have taken such measures and made their homes more airtight will be looking forward to a warm, cozy environment and reduced energy bills.

However, unless your property is suitably ventilated, you could also experience condensation, mould, and associated health risks.

What is condensation?

Air naturally contains a certain amount of water vapour, with warm air holding more water vapour than cold air. Condensation occurs when warm, moist air comes in to contact with cooler air or non porous surfaces, which is why, when you take a hot shower, mirrors and windows in the vicinity steam up.

If your home is sufficiently ventilated, condensation doesn’t become a problem, but when moisture is allowed to build up, it can cause damage to walls, floors, ceilings as well as fabrics like curtains. 

Ways to improve a condensation problem?

If your house suffers from condensation, then by following some of the simple steps below, can reduce the problem.

•    Keep your property well ventilated by opening windows and allowing the moist air to escape.

•    Try not to dry damp clothes inside.

•    When running a bath or taking a hot shower, keep the bathroom door closed. If possible open a window. (Bathrooms should be installed with an automatic extractor fan).

•    When cooking, try to cover pans of boiling water with lids.

•    Keep furniture away from walls (particularly external walls).

•    If possible, endeavour to keep heating levels at a constant temperature.

Condensation solutions

It could be that some of the above measures have little effect on your condensation problem. One of the more recent condensation solutions is a continuous decentralised mechanical extract ventilation (dMEV) system, which will improve both ventilation and air quality.

These continuous fans are recommended by BEAMA to accompany any Green Deal energy efficiency improvements that are made to a property and one fan, consumes less than £5 of energy per year. The added bonus is these fans are discreet and because they are slow speed, almost silent so you will hardly notice its existence.

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