Why condensation is bad for your health and how to fix it

Written by Nigel Simpkins

Modern houses are becoming increasingly airtight, trapping in harmful pollutants like condensation, mould and damp. This can cause health problems like asthma, a breathing difficulty which can be triggered by allergies.

Although most people begin to be affected early childhood, more and more people are becoming at risk due to declining indoor air quality. One study goes so far as to suggest that asthma can be triggered by poor indoor air quality alone. This is because mould is more likely than any other type of allergen to trigger severe asthma.

Mould spores enter the nose, which results in allergy-related symptoms like coughing and sneezing. Spores can also enter the lungs, which can trigger or even cause asthma.

Aside from asthma, what Other Health Problems can Result from Condensation?

As mentioned, asthma is a common problem associated with damp, moisture and mould. Other respiratory issues can also occur, including allergies, bronchitis, and more severely, lung disease.

Allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis is a more severe condition. It results from damp, mould and condensation. It causes an allergic reaction in a person who happens to be allergic to mould spores, resulting in an inflammatory response in the body. This can cause coughing, wheezing and shortness of breath.

How to Fix Condensation Issues in a Rental Property

The truth is that at first, mould, damp or condensation may not seem much of a problem. In fact, you may not notice any health symptoms at all. However, over time, as the problem worsens, this is when people are at greater risk.

Everyday activities at home will produce steam or changes in heat levels, which cause condensation to accumulate in certain areas. It settles on surfaces, and the water soaks in, which can eventually cause mould to form.

Thankfully, there are many easy things a tenant can implement to help alleviate these kinds of problems. Damp investigation experts recommend you to try the following:

Venting Your Home. After taking a shower, or during cooking, open doors and windows to allow condensation to escape. Or if you have an extractor fan, be sure to leave it running.

Drying Clothes Outdoors. Don’t be tempted to dry clothing in a room where the heating is on. Water from the clothes will evaporate into the air, which then absorbs into walls and furniture.

Placing Furniture Properly. Leave cupboard and wardrobe doors open for 30 minutes a day to allow trapped condensation to escape. Leave enough space between the back of the furniture and the wall. Where possible, place furniture in front of internal rather than external walls.

Using Heating Correctly. Ensure each radiator’s temperature in your home is similar so that your property is heated evenly. A temperature difference between the rooms can cause condensation, which can then result in mould forming. Consider leaving your heating on a low temperature all the time, so your rooms are always warm enough.

Buying a Dehumidifier. If you struggle alleviating condensation from your home, you might want to invest in a dehumidifier. This draws the moisture from the air and collects it in a tank which can then be emptied. Leave it running where the damp problem is most severe.