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What Causes Condensation?

Condensation occurs when warm air collides with cold surfaces, or when there's too much humidity in your home. When this moisture-packed warm air comes into contact with a chilly surface, it cools down quickly and releases the water, which turns into liquid droplets on the cold surface.

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Through the daily routine of showers, baths, boiling kettles, cooking, using a tumble dryer, drying clothes and breathing a family of 4 will contribute approximately 4 pints of water per person a day, equal to over 100 pints of water vapour a week, which has to end up somewhere.

Before the days of double glazing, wall and loft insulation this humid, stale air would find its escape route through ill-fitting windows and doors, lofts and so on. It would be replaced by fresher, colder air or to you and me - a draught.


When excess moisture in the air surpasses the dew point you get condensation. This can happen through a number of ways;

  1. The level of moisture in the air.
  2. The temperature of the air in your home.
  3. The surface temperature of the windows.

The more moisture in the air the more likely it is that you will get condensation. The first place you will notice water condensation is on the windows, as warm air collides with a cold surface like a window, it will form water droplets. Adequate ventilation is the only way of preventing condensation. In order to reduce condensation you must reduce the excess mositure in the property. 


Today, after the introduction of energy saving measures such as draught proofing, double glazing and cavity wall insulation there is no natural escape route for this stale, humid air, which is now trapped inside the home.

As a result, this trapped and stale air only makes the problem worse, causing condensation on windows, walls and poor indoor air quality. As these issues worsen more and more damage is done, not only to the building but also the occupants inside the buildings health. 

There are ways to help prevent condensation in your home, such as; wiping down windows and sills, drying clothes outside and opening windows. However, in modern, busy lives it can be difficult to keep on top and in the British climate, the weather makes it difficult. 


Causes of Condensation

Improperly fitted washing machine - From just one load of washing two litres of water is emitted into the air. 

A flued gas heater - which has a flue or chimney to carry the combustion pollutants and water vapour to the air outside the home. An unflued gas heater has no flue and releases the combustion pollutants and water vapour directly into the room. Burning gas always produces water vapour. If there is not enough fresh air circulating in the room, water vapour can cause high humidity and wet surfaces.

Kitchens and Bathrooms - produce a lot of steam and moisture so always ensure you have extractor fans on, use pan lids when cooking, put bath mats down and keep doors closed. 

All of these factors cause high levels of humidity, meaning there is too much moisture in the air and so creates condensation.  


The Consequences of Condensation

The affects of condensation in a property are numerous; condensation can affect the occupants health, the energy efficiency of the property, the visual deterioration and the structural damage of the property. 

Condensation means poor air quality and if nothing is improved this leads to damp and mould which have a very negative impact on some-ones health.Indoor air quality may not be high on your list of concerns. Most people don't associate health problems with the air in their homes and think, 'I'm just prone to headaches,' or 'my nose is always stuffy.' Yet, 81% of people are at risk of respiratory problems or dermatological conditions due to the air in their homes.

Condensation costs you

Water condensation also ruins homes, both indoor and out, nobody wants damp and mould patches inside their home it destroys carpets, flooring, wallpaper and furnishings. Similarly, externally, moisture becoming entrapped within the structure can result in long term corrosion of external walls, metal structures, timber rot, loosening of nails as timber swells, and cladding rot or swelling which can result in costly rectification work.

Lastly as this condensation has such a bearing on your property your heating has to work even harder to try and combat these issues, costing you more. 

Condensation causes streaming windows

Ventilation often gets overlooked as we all want to make our homes as warm as possible we focus on insulation, however, your home also needs to be able to breathe. By installing adequate ventilation so the property can breathe you are not making it colder, in fact with many of EnviroVent's ventilation solutions you can actually recoup heat, so nothing is lost. 

EnviroVent has a ventilation system for every kind of home, whether it be the smallest apartment, bungalow, house or a major building project. With a wide range of energy efficient and innovative ventilation systems, you can be assured that your indoor air quality will be dramatically improved, whilst having a positive effect on your health and your home.


Need help with condensation, mould or damp problems?

One of our local experts will contact you to learn more about your problems, offer free expert advice and make recommendations for a permanent solution.

During the free survey we will

  • check Assess any condensation, damp or mould problems in your property
  • check Take readings of the relative humidity levels
  • check Identify any underlying problems and make recommendations for a permanent solution

Arrange a FREE Home Survey now