How to eliminate damp and mould

Houses that are closed for long periods at a time can often suffer from issues of damp and worse still, mould!

One of the most dispiriting experiences can be to return to your home after a long absence only to be met by the unwelcoming odour of damp. Worse still is mould, the smell of which can permeate everything and which is bad for your health and as medical research has indicated, especially your lungs.
Old stone houses absorb water from the air and from the earth. If they’ve been restored in the recent past, certain procedures will (should!) have been undertaken to ensure that even at foundation level, the stone is protected from the damp seeping in from the earth.
Sometimes, however, this is easier said than done, especially if a house is built into a hillside or the problem arises in an apartment in an old historic centre of a town.
There are products with which one can treat the stone, but if they’re of poor quality they generally don’t allow the stone to ‘breathe’ creating issues of condensation and mould (!) If they’re of good quality – i.e. a breathable material – they can be costly, and tend not to be effective beyond 2 or 3 years.
A simple solution, however, that doesn’t resolve the problem per se, but which will render your house or apartment more or less odour and mould free is a combination of extractor fans and dehumidifiers set on timers. The combination will dry out the interior and ventilate it. 
A dehumidifier, in order to be effective, will need to be able to drain off the water accumulated – either in a shower, sink or via a hole made through an exterior wall. A small, energy efficient dehumidifier – at a cost of circa E.400 + IVA - can cover an area of up to 30 sqm and will do wonders.  Combined with a couple of simple extractor fans – like the ones used in bathrooms and inexpensive – it will do miracles! 
Having just organised this procedure for an apartment of circa 30 sqm – at a cost of E.600 + IVA inclusive of labour – in just a few short weeks, the owner says it has already made a huge difference.
Team, 01/06/2023 18:03:55

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