Condensation-still a problem

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ayabrea38 | 13:32 Wed 13th Oct 2010 | Home & Garden
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Got the new double glazing,and it has the handy way of staying open a little but still locked.I though that leaving a few windows open like that would solve the condensation problem,but it is still there.What am I doing wrong?
I dread to think what its going to be like inn the winter,last year was like a swimming pool on every windowsill in the morning and i would like to avoid this again!
Even though I blamed the old windows,some rooms(mainly bathroom and bedrooms,but even the hall)still affected.I am hoping to get the loft insulation renewed soon,do you think this will finally solve my damp and dingy problem?
Any advice welcome
Aya B


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The first thing is to avoid releasing water vapour into the house. That means don't dry clothes inside unless in a tumble drier with either a vent or a condenser.When cooking, keep pans covered and only simmer cooking water(boiling is never necessary). when showering or bathing keep the bathroom door closed and open the winow when you have finished to allow the moist air to escape to the outside. Dont leave water uncovered as it will evaporate. If you can afford a dehumidifier(about £200-£300) you can reliably remove the water from the house and maintain it at a healthy level. In practice a dehumidifier costs virtually nothing to run as all the electrical energy it consumes goes into heating the house plus you recover energy from condensing the water vapour. You will probably need a dehumidifier capable of removing about 3-5 litres per day, dpending on the size of your house.Failing that, a humidity meter inside and another outside will enable you to open the windows when it is drier outside. Hope this helps, good luck
The bathroom's the easiest Aya. Have you got a good extractor fan in there?
Any condensation which runs down my DG windows just runs out underneath the bottom of the window without pooling on the window sill, and there isn't any draught coming into the room. I think that is what should happen
I've got little ventilator slats in the top of my DG windows in each room, so you can get ventilation without leaving the windows on the latch - I think I had to ask for them as extras but they are quite handy, as I can shut them off in draughty weather. I don't get any condensation at all.
Question Author
I have one of those vent things in the back door,trickle vent I think the builder called it.I haven't got a tumble dryer so I admit I do hang wet clothes up to dry.Have to have a chat with OH about a dehumidifier,sounds good.
Am I supposed to have an extractor fan in the bathroom,I have a window so as its not(as far as I know) a legal requirement I doubt if the landlord will fit one.
Thanks for all your answers
Aya B
I haven't got an extractor in the bathroom, aya - we just open the window if need be.
if you follow everything jomifl says you will be advice I have ever read. I dont feel alone I have struggled for years but you have to learn to cope and make changes and the the science behind why it is happening.

For example causes:
1) poor wall insulation cause damp spots on the walls and ceilings and around windows when high concentration of steam will settle....answer cheak for gaps around windows, insulate loft, fix possible leaking roof, linsulate walls with insulated palster board and or stud walls.
2) too much moisture ...answer intall extracter fan in bathroom above shower or bath only not otherside of room get very powerful one and set it to run 15mins after shower. Open window too if possible. Dont dry clothes in the house get a tumble drier one with a tube out the back you vent ou the house rather than a condenser type.

Also as winter sets in the reason the condensation happens in that the steam finds cold places to condense so if you can try and heat the house alittle more esp on the walls you are having a problem that might be best you could buy a little portable oil raditor on wheels form argos and place it where you need it.

Yes get a dehumidifiier I have one in tis very good. Try and get the most expense you can because they are worth it in the long run better models have humidity sensors built in so you can ask the machine to work with certain humidity settings.

if there is ever a good breeze outside if you open all the windows full just for a few minutes to get a good blow through every day this is really good.
Don`t use a oil radiator for warmth as it will add to any condensation.
It amazes me how many myths there are surrounding the almost uniquely British problem of condensation in dwellings - the latest one I have learned concerns oil filled radiators (their effect is no different from ordinary water filled radiators). I live on the upper floor of a two storey building with high ceilings throughout and the dwelling below me is equally insulated and both have double glazed windows, both have the same type of heating, no fireplaces at all and cooking is by electric hob in both plus both have extractor hoods above them. For a number of reasons I put in false ceilings using the familiar system of tiles (you see them in shops and offices - different designs) in our kitchen dining room and bathroom. The supplier almost refused to sell me them because he insisted the humidity would destroy them in a matter of months - that they were utterly inappropriate and unsuitable. That was almost 20 years ago and to look at them now you would think they were installed last month. On the lower floor I have seen the windows streaming with condensation and paint on the outside door actually had water filled blisters on it of vapour from inside. We never (yes, never) have any condensation on any window or any other surface, even after a shower or when we dry washing indoors. Why the difference, you might ask - the answer is that the condensation is entirely predictable if you have the right habits, and equally easily avoidable by not adopting/continuing those habits (or being unusual). While insulation is important, it is just as equal to heat continuously and well - the alternative is to live the standard misery seen all too frequently in this country. If you choose not to heat (or only slightly and intermittently) then to avoid condensation the best course is not to heat at all (welcome to the stone age).
You may like to read this thread http://www.theanswerb...n/Question938383.html
.............. Karl - harsh, but true :o)
Ventilation (especially bathroom AND kitchen extraction ......... windows and trickle vents aren't enough in those situations), and heating with good insulation.

This is just a personal observation, but I've only ever found the need for de-humidifiers when drying out new plaster throughout a building. I don't want to contradict the good advice given here, de-humids. work very well, but I can never help thinking that they address only the symptoms, and not the causes.
That's just from my experience. In the end, one should do whatever works for you.
Hi Builder, I agree with your comments re dehumidifiers, ordinarily they shouldn't be necessary, and when we lived in a cavity wall brick house in the UK we didn't even contemplate one. Now we live in a stone built house in France and things are a bit different, Last winter was a long cold one and our bedroom wall faces north east. As the winter progressed this wall condensed any moisture available in the house and mould started growing. After running the dehumidifier for a week and several gallons of water later all was cured, We just use it to keep the humidity below 60% now when it is too cold and damp to open the windows. We no longer have condensation on the windows in th mornings despite the fact that we haven't (yet) got double glazing.
Uh, just so as not to misrepresent the truth: The extractors above the hobs are used in both kitchens. There is no extractor in the bathroom downstairs, but the one in ours is only used for odour control (!) as is the one at the downstairs separate toilet.
really recommend a de-himidifier.. we had a similar problem.. and its works a treat.

Dont go cheap though and buy the smallest unit - as it sounds like you have a significant amount of water vapour in the air.

We spent about £90 on one from Homebase...
Also - dont dry wet clothes indoors! This only adds to the problem!
My clothes all went mouldy and had to be washed and smelled musty.. and it drove me nuts til I figured out how to stop it!
Good Luck
Yesterday was not an outdoor drying day here and we dried a total of three full washing machine loads indoors in the course of the day and into the night. Two of us also had a shower in the course of the day. We have double glazing and insulation above and to the sides (external walls/roof) - our floor has below it another dwelling. At this time of year we have all windows closed and there are no vents anywhere (windows, walls ceilings) apart from extractor fans in the kitchen (used when cooking) and bathroom (used for odour control only at/for appropriate short periods). All internal doorways are permanently open but the outer door is only opened to enter and exit the home. Having joined this thread I carefully observed the entire dwelling, including the roof space, and cannot find any trace at all of condensation anywhere over the past 36 hours and I do not expect it now (the washing is dry and has been put away). The relevant point is that the temperarture throughout our house is a minimum of 18 degrees overnight and otherwise a minimum of 20 degrees at all times throughout the year - we are in the UK. The absence of condensation under the conditions I have described comes as no surprise to foreigners but it baffles a lot of Brits. We certainly have never contemplated having a dehumidifier and most foreigners have never heard of one being used in an occupied dwelling.

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Condensation-still a problem

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