Adviser: “Bad air causes sickness” – hidden mildew

BM31

Having mildew as an uninvited tenant is something that all house and flat owners would like to avoid. However, according to studies, around 17 per cent of Germans, around one in six, live in a home that is affected by mildew. Many people affected by this have no idea that the sneaky menace is present in their homes because it often forms without making itself known. This means all too often that the search for mildew only begins once health problems have already arisen.

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The clear winner: our BM31 moisture meter!

Moisture Meter BM31

The truth is out! In a comparison of five leading moisture meters, Trotec’s BM31 was the clear winner. Such was the result of a study carried out by “Vergleich.org”, the independent consumer portal run by the VGL publishing company. “We were particularly impressed by how easy and intuitive the device is to use.” This was the praise with which the portal summarised its rating.

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Exterior Wall Renovation – the Extended Trotec Series 3/4

Today we want to address the topic of “Repainting the house exterior”, and at the same time give the rendering a good beating. While painting your own four (interior) walls is not a problem for most people, painting an exterior wall is a considerably more demanding task. We’ll explain how it’s done, what preparation is necessary and how long the rendering needs to dry before you even think of painting.

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New moisture indicator BM31 – finally available again!

BM31 Moisture Meter

Almost as soon as we brought it to market, the new humidity indicator was sold out. That’s how convincing its advantages are for determining the moisture content of building materials and timber. This and with the device’s new design provided good reasons for it to be sold out so fast – but as of right now, the BM 31 is available once again!

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NEW BM12 and BM21 Moisture Measuring Devices

Moisture Meter

Only wood that is sufficiently dry should really be used as a building material or as firewood. With moisture levels over 20% in woods used for construction there is a risk of significant crack formation, and for firewood, there is risk of damage to health as well as to fireplaces.

The solution: check the moisture content quickly and easily with our new BM12 and BM21 moisture meters – and not only for wood.

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New Trotec design for BM31 Moisture Meter

moisture indicator

Soaking wet? Still damp? Dry now? When the moisture in building materials or wood needs to be checked, our new moisture indicator can readily reveal its strengths. With building work, this applies to checking whether walls have dried out after plastering and identifying damp patches when renovating old properties.

It also applies to its new design …
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Trotec Flood Info: The right moisture measurement after flood damages

VIEW_tro_blog_banner_hochwasser_2013_feuchtemessung_en

When the cellar is completely under water it is clear that it has to be dried. But what about the floors above? Can the moisture rise via the capillaries? Is the floor construction soaked? Particularly important is the question when the dehumidification will be over and when you don’t have to expect any consequential damages. Another important fact for you to know is to what extent you can make the dehumidification on your own and when it is necessary to ask an expert.

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Firewood: Too much moisture means too much smoke and too little fire

There’s nothing that evokes a feeling of cosiness and comfort more on a cold November’s day, when your breath hangs suspended on the bracingly crisp air, than a roaring, raging, crackling fire. Fires are magic. They are breathtakingly beautiful to behold. They can cast a spell on those who gaze, mesmerised, into the dancing, flickering flames as they devour the ashen charcoal logs that lie crumbling in the hearth or lick at the smoky glass window of the cast iron stove door. Man has always been drawn to fire. It satisfies a primeval desire. It fends off wild animals, it is a source of energy that provides both comfort and warmth and it plays a key role in manufacturing processes and in preparing food. And you don’t have to be the proud owner of an Inglenook fireplace to feel and appreciate just how special a fire is.

It is important to know, however, that you won’t get a decent fire going and you won’t get to enjoy your glass of mulled wine while relaxing in front of your open range fireplace or unwinding in front of your stylish wood-burning stove if the wood you have chopped and stacked or bought from a local company is not as dry as you either think it is or is alleged to be!

Wet firewood can not only dampen your spirits, it can also dampen any endeavour you make to keep a good fire going. It doesn’t matter what type of wood it is – good old English oak, sweet-smelling spruce, or pine, beech or birch – if the moisture content of the wood is too high because the wood has not been given enough time to dry, then such moist, green, unseasoned wood will not only produce less heat, it will also produce more sparks and billowy, stinging smoke which can quickly cause a fire to fizzle out. In addition, the gases which your wet firewood sets free are harmful to the environment and therefore, of course, inevitably harmful to us all. Read More

High humidity levels in Asia: Apple iphone owners left out in the rain

high humidity levels

It is not uncommon for humidity levels in Asia to reach 95%. Too much for the Apple iphone according to an article in the South China Morning Post. The phone’s onboard moisture sensors, so called Liquid Submersion Indicators (LSIs), react extremely sensitively to such conditions and switch the cult objet d’art off. Thousands of customers have already been affected.

But worse is still to come: Apple’s one-year warranty expires in case of damage caused by moisture – the company assumes that their cult smartphone has then either been dropped into a swimming pool or left out in the rain. And the warranty clauses are carefully worded with regard to temperature and relative humidity operating and storage ranges, leaving nothing to chance. This development obviously does not go down well with the Apple enthusiasts whose world suddenly goes pear-shaped when their company refuses to accept any responsibility. To date there is no sign that the iphone users can expect either compensation or sympathy from the company giant.

And Asia is much closer than you think. The relative humidity in bathrooms can also reach very high levels, especially when somebody is having a hot bath or shower. And how many smartphone owners, people who like listening to mp3 files or who want to be sure that they don’t miss a call, take their prized possessions into the bathroom with them? But it is exactly these environments that can present a grave problem – not only to your iphone but also your health. Mould thrives on high levels of moisture and as we pointed out in our blog last week: Mould can be a killer. This is why we at Trotec recommend using dehumidifiers to extract excess moisture from the air, especially in bathrooms, windowless rooms or cellars where high levels of moisture can often be compared to a time bomb ticking over and waiting to go off.

The time has come for you to take responsibility into your own hands and create your own dry zone – before it is too late. Check the relative humidity in your home, flat or apartment with one of the many moisture meters from Trotec and bring down moisture levels in bathrooms, basements, cellars and cubby-holes with one of our state-of-the-art, low-priced iphones – sorry, mobile dehumidifiers.

Put another log onto the fire will you Ethel?

fireood moisture

Alright, dear. But only if you check it with the BM20 first.

This week has certainly been MultiMeasure week! Yesterday we decided to settle the discussion regarding which series is the better of the two – the MultiMeasure Basic Series or the Multimeasure Professional Series – and came to the conclusion that neither is better. Each series is designed for different applications, different users and different budgets with both series offering simply unbeatable value for money and superb quality into the bargain. And the day before that we elaborated on the benefits of having a series for professionals designed by professionals who come from the same fields and who are able to read the needs of their clients like no others and provide them with just the right tools for their own individual applications.

Well, today we would like to draw your attention briefly to a particular device, a device which you would normally think you wouldn’t be needing until much later in the year. The BM20 moisture moisture from Trotec is yet another extremely useful and affordable measuring device straight from the Multimeasure Basic Series. The BM20 mositure meter is designed to measure the amount of moisture in a number of building materials and – here comes the interesting part – a whole selection of different types of woods. Wood used for building, wood used in carpentry and cabinet-making, wood used in furniture construction – and firewood.

Firewood is not just firewood. Firewood normally has to be stacked properly and sheltered from the rain so that it can dry over a longer period before being used as a source of heat, comfort and fuel. Wood that is properly treated is called seasoned firewood and has a moisture content that lies between 20 and 25%. If the wood you have bought, collected or cut is burnt while it is still too moist, then you do not only run a real risk of ruining your chimney, you even risk setting your house on fire. Wet firewood does not only burn badly – the wood is not able to unfold its full heat potential because the excess moisture in the wood turns to steam and mixes with the other gases, thus stopping them from igniting and generating the heat they normally would produce – it can be extremely dangerous too. The soot or creosote that forms on the inside of the chimney is highly combustible. That means it can literally erupt into a fire of volcanic proportions.

The best way to prevent such an event from occurring is to season your firewood properly – and to check that the moisture content is not too high. If you buy wood from a supplier for the first time or from somebody who is selling ready-to-burn firewood at a suspiciously low price, then it is always better to check the moisture content first.

By the way… wood burning is ecologically friendly. The carbon dioxide that is released during the burning process lies dormant in the wood and would – if you wood pardon the pun – also be released into the atmosphere if the wood were to remain in the forest and rot.

Buy a BM20 moisture meter today. You wouldn’t want to risk anything when so much is at stake now wood you?