If your home is damp and cold, you could be in a for a miserable winter. It can be worrying to see the wetness on the walls, condensation on the windows or mould spores on the ceiling. All of these things can actually be hazardous to your health. It is important you deal with these problems urgently to prevent illness or damage to your home.
The wetness in your home can be coming from any of several sources. The most obvious source of damp is from steam. This might be coming from your shower or bath. As the moisture from the steam finds colder surfaces, condensation and water droplets can occur. If these are not dried immediately, the water can stagnate and become mouldy.
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Cooking also generates steam, especially when you are boiling things. Both your bathroom and kitchen should have good quality extractor fans installed to remove much of the steam. It is best you also open the windows to let fresh air dry out the room. This can help remove any odours as well. Fresh air in your home is essential to healthy living.
Dampness can also get into your home from outside. Check your roof is in good condition and that no rain can get in. Flat roofs need to be re-felted every fifteen to twenty years. If yours is no longer in good condition, black mould spores might be appearing in the ceiling below it. You can find out more about how flat roofs can be restored from a reputable roofing company.
Old houses tend not to have the cavity walls and insulation we are used to in modern builds. This means you may be more prone to damp penetrating the brickwork and getting into the plaster of your internal walls. Damp proof courses were not standard either in the older houses. All of these problems can be rectified if damp is penetrating your home. Speak to a specialist, or your local council for help with listed buildings.
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Your plumbing may be to blame for damp. Even the slightest of drips can cause staining and mould to grow. If you are witnessing damp in a particular area, it is worth exploring the pipework there to see if there is a problem. Drains can also leak. This creates more serious health problems as it is not fresh water that is affecting your home.
Keep your house at a regular temperature. Somewhere between eighteen and twenty degrees in winter is ideal. Open the windows each day for a while to let fresh air circulate. Dry out your bathroom after use. Check seals on the windows are in good condition. The grouting on your tiles should also be checked. Water can seep behind the tiles if the grout has perished. Try using a dehumidifier for a week to remove excess moisture from the air too.
Damp is a serious problem. For those with respiratory health problems it can be quite dangerous if there are mould spores around. Look after your home this winter to keep damp and mould at bay.