Damp and mold; pesky home invaders that make your residence look ghastly, and can be seriously detrimental in the long term.
Well, like any problem it’s easier to deal with when you catch it in the earlier stages- I know it sounds a bit drastic- but ignoring it will just make it worse.
It can cause such structural problems as gradual decay in walls, most notably detected through ‘tidemarks’ or dark water spots and to some extents, they can cause respiratory problems as mold is a heavenly breeding ground for mites and vice-versa.
There are a multitude of factors that cause it to fester, and just like the human body, symptoms differ and as a result the method to cure it changes too.
If you treat the problem using the wrong solution, it can cause the situation to become much worse.
How to treat existing damp and mould?
If your house is in desperate need of opening external cavity walls or fitting damp-proof course then it’s better to leave it to the professionals. Otherwise, to initially treat the mold that’s already collected:
- Wipe down walls and window frames with a fungicidal wash which should carry a Health and Safety approval number.’
- Dry-clean mildewed clothes and shampoo carpets.
In terms of identifying the cause of damp and mold, there are 3 main instigators:
- Penetrating Damp- which is caused by water seeping through the walls.
- Rising Damp- confined to the lower part of walls (up to one metre) and to solid floors, which is caused by water soaking up from the ground.
- Condensation- caused by the warmth of the house or appliances evaporating moisture in the air.
Damp and mould prevention
The main prevention techniques and what should be taken from this piece are these points to remember (in case you didn’t read the rest of the article):
Produce less moisture:
- Cover Pans
- Dry clothes outdoors
- Vent tumble dryers to the outside
- Avoid using paraffin/flue-less bottles gas heaters
Ventilate to remove moisture:
- Ventilate especially when the space is occupied
- Increase ventilation of the kitchen, bathroom and affected areas, especially when doors are shut or the room is being used.
- Ventilate areas that house clothes
Insulate and drought-proof:
- Insulate the loft
- Drought-proof windows and external doors
- Consider cavity insulation
- Consider secondary window glazing
- If struggling to implement financially, find out if you are eligible for a grant.
Heat your home a little more:
- If possible, provide a constant low background heat, in conjunction with ventilation.
- Research benefits, rebates and help with fuel bills.
Many of the products you need to prevent your home from damp and mould can be purchased from these UK based suppliers Newton Waterproofing and Pam Ties.