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.
If mildew has formed without being noticed in a house, the slogan of our advice series “Bad air causes sickness” will become an unexpected bitter reality. If breathed in through the air, pores from mildew with metabolic substances can cause sniffles, bronchitis, reddened eye membranes, fatigue or headaches – all of which are textbook symptoms that indicate a mildew infestation in living spaces. In addition, mildew produces carcinogenic toxins and it is a well established that it triggers serious allergies. All of this provides more than enough reasons to take the dangers posed mildew formation seriously.
How to prevent mildew formation in your home
Damage caused by dampness in houses or flats goes hand in hand with health-threatening mildew infestations. You should therefore make sure that the humidity remains within the optimal range of between 40 and 60 % . First of all, you can do this by airing properly as we described in Part 1/7 of our advisor series. Secondly, you can use dehumidifiers, like those offered by Trotec with its TKK Comfort Series which suit any intended application and all individual tastes. You should of course also check for dampness on the walls and ceilings. Ideally, you should use adampness measurement device which is suitable for this purpose to assist the inspection. If you want walls to remain free of outbreaks, then a measurement device like the BM31, which works using the dielectric process, is the remedy of choice. In particular you should check
- Window sills, stiles and heads
Moisture always builds up where it is coldest. So mildew is very quick to settle in the corners of windows in older buildings or, more generally, where windows have poor insulation.
- Heater alcoves
The outer walls are thinner there, so they also cool down more quickly than elsewhere. As long as the radiators are switched on, there is no problem. But there is a risk of mildew when the heating is not fully on or if it is switched off.
- All corners of the room and ceiling
Since outer walls get very cold during the winter, they are prone to condensation accumulating and cause build-ups of mould patches.
- Behind furniture
Air should be free to circulate behind your cupboards so that any condensate can escape. It is best to place furniture 10 to 15 centimetres away from the wall.
- Kitchen and bathroom
Here silicon seams should be checked first and foremost. If they are connected to cold outer walls, they will be particularly prone to outbreaks of mould.
Just in case – evict the mildew spores from your house…
If you have actually discovered mildew in your home, you should take action without delay. For example, you can purchase methylated spirits or isopropyl alcohol from the chemist’s or pharmacy. Both of these alcohol-based substances are well suited to the task but are highly flammable. Therefore, you need to ventilate the area well both during and after use until the alcohol has evaporated. If the mildew infestation exceeds an area of more than half a square metre, health and safety authorities recommend hiring a specialist for the clean-up.
How to always keep a grip on humidity and material moisture
- With its TTK Comfort dehumidifiers, Trotec has the right model for virtually all intended purposes on offer. Thanks to their innovative technology, such as hygrostat-controlled automatic dehumidification, these devices are effective when it comes to keeping rooms dry. All TTK devices can be used with flexibility thanks to their mobility and compact design and also prove convincing with a wide range of other convenient equipment features.
- The BM31 is an electronic moisture detector with which it is possible to determine the distribution of moisture in walls, floors and ceilings quickly. Moreover, the device measures dampness in materials with a penetration depth of 5 to 40 millimetres, doing so completely non-destructively by simply placing it on a surface. Thanks to its electrical measurement technology, there is no need for the use of probes or electrodes.
Clean air – with innovative solutions from Trotec
Inform yourself comprehensively about all the advantages offered to you by our air quality management system using the dehumidifiers of the TTK Comfort Series. And also make the most of our current offer: You can now get the BM31 moisture measurement device for just £46.23 instead of £73.22 incl. VAT – in the Trotec shop now!