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Preventing damp, mould and condensation

What we will do if you report damp or mould

If you report a damp, mould or condensation problem we will ask you to follow the advice in our leaflet keeping your home free from damp and mould (PDF, 1.98MB) for a period of four weeks. If after this time there is no improvement you need to contact us again.

We will have a discussion with you to ensure you have followed our steps to minimise damp and mould. After this we will  arrange for a property inspection to be carried out to investigate further, with the objective to resolve the issue. We will explain any repairs required. Please note however, if you have not followed our advice you could be liable for rechargable repairs on any work required.

What is mould?

The number one cause of mould in homes in the UK today is under-heating. You will get less mould if you keep your home warm, ventilate properly and minimise the amount of moisture you release into the air. If rising energy costs mean you are struggling to pay for heating, ask your energy supplier about ways to spread the cost.

Mould grows and multiplies in moist areas, slowly at first then quicker and quicker. It is normal to have some mould growth in winter but, you need to stay on top of it to prevent it getting more serious. In most cases black mould is caused by condensation. See our steps to minimise damp and mould.

What is condensation?

Condensation comes from cooking, cleaning, bathing, even breathing. Condensation will form on the coldest surfaces in the room first, these cold areas are usually around windows, the corners of the room, and external walls. Condensation occurs mainly during cold weather, whether it is raining or dry. Condensation is not necessarily a problem, as long as the surface has time to dry out every day. It is the residents' responsibility to deal with mould caused by condensation.

What is damp?

Damp is a place where moisture collects but does not have a chance to fully dry out. Damp is very common in the UK and is nearly always due to condensation. Damp usually builds up in areas where there is not much air movement. See our leaflet keeping your home free from damp and mould (PDF, 1.98MB).

Steps you can take

1. Minimise the amount of moisture in your home

  • Dry clothes outside, or in a room with a window open or extractor fan running and doors closed. Use a tumble dryer venting outside, or a condenser.
  • Never put wet clothes on a radiator - they fill the room with moisture in seconds.
  • Keep lids on saucepans when cooking.
  • Don't use paraffin or other bottled gas heaters - they release large amounts of water vapour.
  • Always run the extractor fan or open a window when showering or cooking.
  • Keep trickle vents open.
  • Put cold water in the bath before adding hot.

2. Improve air movement around areas prone to mould

  • Pull all furniture away from walls, including beds.  
  • Leave a gap between the curtains and the wall during the day.
  • Keep air bricks open and clear.
  • Don't draught proof kitchen and bathroom windows or rooms that are prone to damp.
  • Don't over-fill cupboards and shelves.

3. Minimise the number of cold surfaces by heating your home to a reasonable level of warmth.

  • The WHO guidelines suggest 21 degrees in a living room and 18 degrees in the bedroom - lower at night and when you're out.

4. Wipe down small patches of mould with mild bleach or anti-fungal spray before they spread.

5. Wipe down condensation from windows and other areas each morning and open the window for a while.

6. Treat bad outbreaks of mould and redecorate using fungicidal paint.

For more detailed information on keeping your home free from damp and mould and reducing your energy bills, read our leaflet keeping your home free from damp and mould (PDF, 1.98MB).