Damp, mould and condensation
No one wants damp, mould or condensation in their home. Left alone it can also cause longer-term damage. But the good news is that there are easy ways to tackle these problems. Here’s how.
If you have damp, mould, or condensation in your home, you must contact us as soon as you notice it.
We will send a repairs inspector to your home to take a look and to discuss the possible cause, to log any necessary repairs and to give you advice and guidance if the problem is related to condensation.
Try to keep the temperature in your home at a consistent temperature (between 18-21°C).
Wipe away water droplets (condensation) from the windows, tiles and other surfaces before mould grows.
Keep your internal doors closed, particularly when cooking and bathing, and leave a window open until the moisture in the air and on the surfaces evaporates.
Keep your home well ventilated by keeping extractor fans turned on, opening trickle vents to the windows and opening windows – especially when cooking, after bathing and when drying clothes inside.
We don’t recommend drying clothes on maidens or radiators, but if you need to, ensure you ventilate the room properly to allow the moisture from the clothes to escape.
Leave the kettle or a pan boiling longer than necessary.
Leave the kitchen and bathroom doors open when cooking or bathing.
Dry clothes on a radiator without ventilating the room or use a front vented tumble dryer without a venting tube discharging outside.
Have furniture rested against walls, this prevents air circulation to that area.
Putting the heating on in short bursts at a high temperature.
Block wall vents, trickle vents or extractor fans, especially where any form of gas heating is in use.
Leave condensation to run down windows, causing puddles on the sill.
Allow mould to build up on any surface.
Condensation is water vapour in the air in most homes - warm air holds more moisture than cold. When this moisture meets a cold surface (eg a window or wall) the vapour turns into visible droplets of water.
Water running down windows, damp patches on walls and un-insulated ceilings are the obvious signs that there is condensation in the home.
Mould spores are like tiny invisible seeds that float in the air. When they come in to contact with moisture these spores multiply, very much like weeds in the garden.
Most common moulds are black or dark green and they like to grow in cupboards, wardrobes and on the back of furniture which is too close to the wall.
Lots of moisture will soil the clothes in a wardrobe with a powdery mildew. You often see this on leather shoes.
Yes. Mould on surfaces such as wallpaper, on the edges of window frames or on tiles can be washed down with a mild solution of white distilled vinegar.
The acid in the vinegar kills the mould spores. It needs to be left on for up to an hour then wiped off.
If the mould reappears then the Trust can be contacted to treat it with a fungicidal solution but vinegar will work in the majority of situations.
On clothes, allow mildew to dry thoroughly before washing or dry-cleaning any affected items.
There are two different sorts of damp.
The most common difference between rising and penetrative damp is the height at which it occurs. Rising damp will only occur up to a metre from the ground level, whereas penetrating damp can occur anywhere and can be caused by leaks from pipes, gutters, roofs etc.
If there is an obvious cause of the damp, such as a roof leak, we will raise the necessary repair in the first instance to ensure we send a trade operative to complete a repair. If there is damage caused internally due to the leak, its important you let us know so we can address this.
If the cause of damp is unknown, we will send a repairs inspector to assess in the first instance.
How we can all better manage the moisture in our homes
This guidance comes from The UK Centre for Moisture in Buildings. It explains all you need to know manage the moisture that exists in all our homes.