The sudden drop in temperature at this time of year as we move rather swiftly into autumn isn’t just a shock to the system, it can also lead to unwanted condensation starting to appear on your windows. And while condensation on the outside of double-glazing is a good sign that the windows are doing their job in stopping draughts getting in, having it on the inside of the glass is a cause for concern.
Condensation is essentially the water beads that form when moist air meets a cold surface. If it is not maintained efficiently then it can develop into dangerous mould which is linked to health conditions such as asthma, eczema and bronchitis. That’s why it's important to keep condensation at bay before it worsens and causes damage to your home and health.
One easy way of stopping dampness building up in your home is using houseplants. While plants do release water through a process called transpiration, experts say it's not enough to cause any problems. In fact, plants are natural dehumidifiers and can absorb water from the air, so reducing condensation.
Recommended plants to try are ivy, peace lilies, tillandsia (often known as air plant because they don’t require any soil), calathea, begonias, spider plants, snake plant (also called mother-in-law's tongue), aloe vera, azalea, orchids and ferns, which are all good at taking moisture out of the air. Don't overwater them, let them get most of the water they need out of the surrounding air instead.
Adam Pawson, at window firm Safestyle, has also shared his tips on how to prevent condensation from leading to dangerous mould build-up in your home.
1. Regularly open your windows
If your home is suffering from condensation, damp or mould, the best thing you can do is to try and improve the ventilation inside. Try to regularly open windows to allow air to move freely and let moist air escape from the property. Ventilation systems such as extractor fans can also massively help to reduce the condensation in your homes.
2. Hang your washing to dry in airy, well-ventilated spaces
Reducing how much moisture is in the air can have a huge impact on tackling condensation dampness. Little changes such as having your tumble dryer vented outside and hanging washing in airy spaces, instead of drying it inside warm rooms, can really help to keep the mould at bay.
3. Clear any excess moisture that builds up around your windows
If you do start to see water beads appearing on or around your windows when the temperature outside begins to drop, make sure that you’re clearing the area on a daily basis. Use a microfiber cloth to remove any dampness, before applying any cleaning solution.
4. How to tackle mould that’s already formed
If mould has already built up around your window frame, it’s important that you take action to remove it in order to avoid the health risks associated with it. Wearing protective gloves, use a household black mould remover and use a non-abrasive brush to go over the affected area. Leave the solution for up to 15 minutes to allow it to break down the bacteria. Once complete, go over the area with a damp cloth and repeat the process until the mould is completely removed before wiping over with a clean cloth. Keep the window open until the area is completely dry." You can also use a solution of one part bleach to ten parts water to do the same job.
5. Ensure that your home is well-insulated
Making sure your home is better insulated can also really help when tackling condensation and dampness. Double glazing, wall insulation and draught-proofing will help to reduce the amount of heat that is lost from your home. Having well-installed, energy-efficient windows will help to keep the property's temperature high which can have a massive impact on condensation and mould growth.
This content was originally published here.