Contact MadCity Environmental today for more information on how to ensure your home has proper insulation and adequate ventilation to avoid multiple harmful house moisture issues.
Finding solutions to moisture problems, be they condensation or water problems, is often a difficult, time-consuming and expensive undertaking. The first step in any situation is to identify the source of the problem. This may not be easy because two and often more things may be working together to create the problem.
Sometimes as people attempt keep out the cold, while keeping in the warmth, many homeowners caulk and weatherstrip around windows and doors. Unfortunately, if not done correctly and/or without proper ventilation, these methods can have a negative effect as the same practices that trap heat in the home can also trap high levels of moisture.
Another common condition contributing to moisture problems in Wisconsin homes is the existence of cool surfaces with which interior moisture vapor naturally comes in contact. These include poorly weatherized and insulated windows and poorly insulated exterior walls and ceilings.
In less energy-efficient homes, cool surfaces are readily available for water vapor to condense and collect on. Warming these surfaces by adding insulation or cutting down on the amount of cold air that can get to them by caulking and weatherstripping will lessen condensation problems.
Condensation on window surfaces in cool or cold months can be controlled by adding layers of glass in the form of storm windows or using double- or triple- glazed window units, installing a plastic film on the outside or inside of the window frame (a less expensive way to add storm window protection), repairing broken glass, and sealing any leaks in and around the window with weatherstripping and caulking on both the inside and outside.
Peeling exterior paint and discolored interior walls and ceilings (usually in the form of mold or mildew growth) are good indications that condensation is occurring inside wall cavities and attics. During winter, cold outside air collects in these areas and can cool attic, ceiling, wall cavity and interior wall surfaces to the point where condensation occurs. Adding insulation to these areas will warm these surfaces and thus help prevent condensation.
When you add insulation, be sure to repair, caulk or weatherstrip any holes or cracks in ceilings, walls and floors and along baseboards. These are prime areas for moisture migration to occur. Moisture vapor moves with air, and any cracks or holes that allow air to flow freely through them are potential trouble spots.
Adding insulation to basement walls has advantages similar to adding it to wall cavities and the ceiling: it eliminates cold surfaces where condensation can occur, and it cuts energy costs.