We’re approaching the coldest time of year and with it, the problems caused by condensation indoors. It’s a pet hate of mine. Not just because of the inconvenience factor but also because it can lead to mould and, in turn, breathing difficulties.
As well as having three young children, I have asthma so I’m acutely aware of the risks. In fact, I can often tell if there are nasties in the air as soon as I walk into a room. Thankfully, there are a fair few things you can do to tackle them. Here are the main measures we take to stop condensation, including gadgets from Meterics and Vileda that have proved very handy…
Know your enemy!
Condensation is caused by moisture becoming trapped as a result of poor ventilation. Unfortunately, it’s not always easy to tell if you’re experiencing problems and, if so, whether you’re doing enough to stop them – at least not immediately. Humidity meters can help detect whether condensation is likely to occur. I was sent the Smart Sensor AR847 professional humidity meter by Meterics and it has really helped us keep on top of things.
It’s intuitive, only requires a 9v battery and quickly tells you the temperature and relative humidity. It also allows you to toggle between Celsius and Fahrenheit and hold maximum and minimum readings. At around £35, it may not be for everyone, but I asked for the professional meter due to my asthma. There are others in the region of £20 available within the Meterics range.
Something in the air
Simply sitting in a room and breathing adds to condensation. So if you spend a prolonged amount of time in a room – as I do, working from home – it’s worth keeping a window open – even if it’s ever so slightly. Decluttering and moving furniture away from outside walls can also help as you need air to flow freely.
The heat is on
Well, if it isn’t then it certainly should be! If keeping yourself warm in the colder months isn’t incentive enough to stick the heating on, keeping surfaces warm to reduce the chances of condensation forming on them should be. The cooler they are, the more vulnerable they are, so aim for a consistent, comfortable room temperature.
Born in a barn?
If you’re in the habit of leaving doors open, there are some times when you should definitely be keeping them closed. For example, if you’re cooking with pans of hot water in the kitchen, keeping a window open and the door shut to stop moisture spreading to other rooms is a must. Similarly, if you have to dry your washing indoors, make sure you do the same.
Vac it up!
Of course, whatever you do you’re inevitably going to get some condensation on your windows on colder days. You’ll want to get rid of it as soon as possible before it becomes something nasty and airborne. Wiping it away with a cloth can help to a degree, but can be a bit of a faff. I’ve found the Vildea Windomatic to be a great help.
Like a cross between a cordless vacuum cleaner and a squeegee, it clears windows of condensation by sucking it into a container that you can empty quickly and easily. It’s lightweight and has a flexible head, so it gets the job done with ease. I’m yet to master the streak-free look on our windows, but that’s down to my technique. I can live with that as it gets an unpleasant job done with minimal fuss. I highly recommend it!
Disclosure: Meterics and Vileda provided me with the products featured in this post independently of one another.