How to Control Condensation in Roof SpacesStapleford Roofing · Roofing · August 25, 2020
Roof condensation can be a big problem for some homeowners, resulting in damp, mould, and even structural damage. So, what exactly are the causes of condensation and what are some simple ways to prevent condensation from forming in your roof space? In this article, we take a look at this common issue and offer some easy resolutions to keep your home condensation-free.
What causes roof condensation?
The daily hustle and bustle of a busy home produces lots of moisture throughout the year, via washing, drying, cooking, and other activities. Couple that with closed windows in winter, and all this warm moisture has got to go somewhere. Warm air holds more moisture than cold air and warm air also rises, which results in it collecting in roof spaces.
Droplets of condensation form when this rising moisture-rich warm air comes into contact with a surface that is cooler than what is known as dew point temperature (the temperature at which air is completely saturated with water vapour). If these cool surfaces are situated in roof spaces, this is what causes roof condensation. Also, effective insulation of a roof space can actually exacerbate a problem, as it keeps the surfaces cool.
What are the problems with roof condensation?
Roof condensation occurs in many homes, but isn’t always a problem. It can actually occur on a temporary basis during the colder months, before clearing up again when summer comes around. However, for some homeowners it can become a more persistent difficulty.
You need to learn to spot the signs of roof condensation, especially persistent cases, to judge whether or not it might be causing an issue. This way, you can put steps in place to combat it.
The signs of and problems caused by roof condensation include:
- Water staining
- Wet patches
- Dark spots on walls or ceilings
- Structural roof damage
- Wood rot
- Insect infestation
- Mould growth
- Unpleasant odours
If you’ve noticed any of these issues crop up, it may be wise to call out a roofing specialist to verify if the roof space is suffering from condensation damage or not. Not only will a roofing professional provide swift diagnosis, they will also be able to implement preventative measures to help you manage it.
How to prevent roof condensation
It’s tricky to prevent condensation entirely, but you can take action to significantly reduce it.
There are two main tips to stop roof condensation, and they are:
- Prevent moisture formation: One technique is to reduce the amount of moisture formation in the first place.
- Ensure extractor fans are used and functioning in the kitchen and bathroom
- Ensure loft hatches are well-sealed
- Open windows after baths and showers, or when drying clothes on radiators
- Use saucepan lids when cooking
- Avoid leaving the loft hatch open for long periods of time
- Improve roof ventilation: Preventing moisture production only goes so far if you already have an established problem. Instead, you should be working to correct or repair an existing issue, and for this, the expertise of a roofing professional is required to improve the ventilation of your roof space.
- Check that air flow or ventilation slots are not being prevented by any large objects
- Get a roofing professional to install roof vents, ventilation slots or other ventilation technology if you don’t already have it, to give your roof space room to breathe. Roofing experts can deliver ventilation measures that will relieve the problem without impacting the insulation of your roof too much
- Consider the installation of water vapour barriers to catch some of the rising condensation
- Think ahead – when installing a roof for the first time, or replacing your roof, ensure that designs include in-built ventilation features
What if it’s too late?
Persistent and troublesome roof condensation can normally be caught early and measures put in place to improve the situation. However, if your condensation issues have been going on for many years unnoticed, they may have caused structural damage and roofing issues in your home. In these cases, a roofing professional such as Stapleford Roofing will need to be called out to repair the roof and put preventative measures in place to stop the situation arising again in the future.
Stapleford Roofing are the local roofing specialists for residents in Nottingham & Derby. During our thorough site surveys, we’ll quickly establish and diagnose any issues before suggesting the right course of action to combat the problems. We also give free, no-obligation quotations and all work is carried out to the highest industry standards. Contact us today to find out more.