How to reduce condensation and mould
- Produce Less Moisture
Every day our activities – even breathing – add moisture to the air inside our home. To reduce this:
- Always try to dry clothes outdoors;
- Avoid drying indoors – but if you have to – use a clothes airer in the bathroom, close the door and turn on the extractor fan, or leave the window slightly open;
- Vent tumble driers to the outside;
- Cover pans when cooking, don’t leave kettles boiling and only fill with the water you need (this will help reduce fuel bills).
- Remove Excess Moisture
Wipe windows and window sills to remove condensation. This is especially important in the bedroom, bathroom and kitchen – just opening the window is not enough. Make this a part of your regular cleaning.
- Ventilate – Getting Rid of Moisture
Ventilating rooms removes condensation and excess moisture. You can do this without making draughts or cooling the room too much – open the window slightly or use the trickle vent that is often on new UPVC windows. This allows warm (moist) air to escape and lets in cool (dry) air.
- Don’t completely block chimneys, vents, air bricks and flues;
- Always ventilate or open a window when using the kitchen or bathroom and close the doors to prevent moisture spreading to other parts of the house. Continue ventilating these rooms for a short time after a shower, bath or cooking and keep the door closed;
- Open bedroom windows after you have gotten up for the day (ideally for minimum 1 hour) and pull back the sheets to air the bedding;
- Leave gaps between the backs of furniture and cold walls so air can circulate and avoid over filling cupboards and wardrobes as air cannot circulate.
- Steady Heating
In cold weather, keeping low background heat on is the best way to warm rooms and avoid condensation – much better than short bursts of high heat.
Make sure you understand your radiator heating controls, thermostats and timers which allow you to control your heating and manage heating costs.
- Black Mould and Dealing with it
Black mould can grow on walls, ceilings, furnishings – even clothes. To kill and remove the mould:
- Remove excess mould carefully with a damp cloth (throw away after). Or, use a vacuum and empty afterwards. Avoid brushing mould as this releases spores into the air;
- Wipe affected areas down with a fungicidal wash/diluted bleach (available from most DIY shops or supermarkets). Protect yourself with rubber gloves and safety glasses;
- Mildewed clothes can be dry cleaned.
Dealing with condensation isn’t easy, and you should try to carry out as much of this advice as you can each day so it becomes part of your habit and lifestyle – just doing 1 or 2 steps won’t necessarily solve the problem.