Keeping Your Home Dry Whatever the Weather

Learn effective strategies for keeping your home dry in any weather condition. From routine maintenance to waterproofing solutions, ensure a moisture-free environment indoors.

Keeping Home Dry

There’s been a lot of talk about the prevalence of dampness in homes. It’s one of those topics that keeps cropping up in news feeds. As it’s an issue that can affect any home and can cause all kinds of health problems, it’s no surprise that it’s making headlines. 

Whether you are experiencing this problem or not, it might seem strange that so many homes are currently suffering from dampness. But there are a combination of factors causing it. 

Keeping Your Home Dry Whatever the Weather

Why is damp such a problem right now?

So, why are so many homes struggling with damp issues? Well, first of all, our climate is thought to be changing. This means we’re seeing milder winters but heavier rainfall and more storms. And those living near the coast can bear the brunt of this. But this is just one contributing factor. 

There are a huge number of old properties that are suffering from damp thanks to patchy repairs and a lack of maintenance over the years. Often, this is because homeowners are cutting costs or simply haven’t realized how important seasonal maintenance is. 

It’s not simply old houses, though, as there are plenty of newer properties with damp problems too. This is sometimes due to poor building practices and cheap materials, but our lifestyles can also be to blame. For instance, keeping windows and vents closed can trap moisture—from drying laundry, cooking steam, and even our breath—into the home. This excess moisture often sticks to the walls, causing damp and mould patches. 

Understanding the major causes of dampness helps us manage potential problems in our own homes. So, let’s take a look at how to prevent dampness and keep your home dry, whatever the weather. 

Dealing with the rain

Rain leaking into the home is one common cause of dampness. So, one of the first steps you should take to prevent dampness is to make sure your home is watertight. 

Your roof and guttering both play a huge role in keeping your home dry. But to work well, they need to be constantly maintained and do need to be repaired or replaced when they get damaged. 

You need to check the condition of your roof and gutters at least once a year. This includes looking out for signs of damaged and slipped tiles, missing flashing and sagging, and disconnected and blocked gutters. You’re also wise to keep an eye out for leaks on a regular basis. Dripping sounds in the loft and water stains on beams, rafters, and joists, as well as yellow-brown marks on walls and ceilings, are some of the telltale signs. 

If you suspect there’s an issue, it’s important not to ignore it, as the longer something stays broken, the worse it’s likely to get. 

Guttering costs an average of £650 to completely replace, including labour, materials, and the use of access towers or scaffolding. However, it’s most likely that only sections will need replacing or repairing in most cases. Once fixed, it’s crucial to get your gutters cleaned seasonally, to keep them in good working order. 

In terms of the roof itself, simple tile replacements are likely to cost between £200 and £350, while repairing lead flashing typically costs £250. These expenses can mount up, but neglecting the roof of your home is likely to lead to dampness and water ingress. In the long term, this can lead to serious health problems and could damage the structure of your house. 

Managing moisture inside

It’s not just rainwater that can cause dampness in your home. As you’ve already read, excess moisture levels are also a major cause. So, it’s important to know how to manage the moisture inside your home.

During the winter, we’re more likely to keep our windows and internal doors closed. But this does stop air from being able to flow around the home. Once air stops flowing, moisture becomes trapped and condenses onto windows, walls, and other cold surfaces. So, you do need to allow air to circulate freely.  Aside from opening doors and windows periodically, check that air bricks in walls, chimney breasts, and trickle vents on window frames are open and not blocked up. 

It’s likely that your bathroom and kitchen generate most of the excess moisture inside your home. When window ventilation alone isn’t sufficient, installing an extractor fan is the best solution to manage this moisture. Fitting a new fan in the bathroom costs around £120, and an extractor for the kitchen costs around £200, although the more complex the ducting is, the higher the total price will be. 

When you’re doing the laundry, it’s obviously better to line dry your clothes. But as the weather isn’t always on our side, you need to think about how to limit the moisture from indoor drying. 

There are a few ways to do this, but you can start by giving your clothes an extra spin to remove as much water as possible before your clothes leave the machine. Ideally, while your clothes are drying, you should maximise the air flow around your home by opening a few windows and perhaps even using a portable fan to boost circulation. If you suspect there’s still a lot of moisture in your home, then running a dehumidifier might be necessary. 

In conclusion

Maintaining a dry home is crucial for protecting your property and ensuring the comfort of your family, regardless of the weather. By implementing the strategies outlined in this article, such as routine maintenance, waterproofing solutions, and proactive measures, you can safeguard your home against moisture-related issues and prevent costly damage. Remember to regularly inspect your home for signs of water intrusion and address any issues promptly to maintain a healthy living environment. With proper care and attention, you can keep your home dry and comfortable year-round, no matter what the weather brings.

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