Condensation in the home

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Badly damaged wall from condensation

Condensation is something we are all familiar with. Most of us may know the basic rules to prevent it; ventilation and heat. In this post we will be explaining exactly what causes it and why these two factors are crucial in preventing condensation in the home.
Air has a certain capacity for water vapour, when it is full of water the water falls out as droplets. Different temperatures have a different capacity for water. Warm air can carry more water, whereas cold air can carry very little.

Think of them as different size buckets, warm air is a bigger bucket and so can hold more. Cold air is a smaller bucket so can carry less. If therefore your warm air gets colder (i.e. the bucket gets smaller) more water will overflow from the bucket, and form water droplets.
This is why condensation forms on cold surfaces because as the air gets closer to that surface the air has less capacity for water so it falls out as water droplets (condensation).

Condensation above a window

One of the easiest and cheapest ways to avoid condensation is to keep a good level of ventilation. This includes leaving windows open after showers or cooking and having extractor fans. By having a good flow of air it takes out the excessively wet air out of your home and replaces it with fresh air, effectively emptying the bucket so it doesn’t overflow.

Heating works to remove condensation by increasing the airs capacity for water, i.e. making the bucket bigger. If the temperature of your home fluctuates throughout the day it is like changing bucket size multiple times. The more times you change from one bucket to the next, the more chance of it overflowing; and those water droplets (condensation) falling out. Therefore its important to try and keep your home at a constant temperature.

A combination of heating and ventilation is crucial to keeping your home a condensation free zone.

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Why ventilation and heating prevent condensation!