Excessive humidity in house construction and its fatal consequences

Mold – a frequent result of construction defects and improper heating and ventilation. A problem that not only costs money and stress, but can also significantly affect the occupants’ physical health. Frequently it leads to diseases of the skin and the respiratory tract. Those with allergies are more susceptible.

2013-06_humidity

Photo-credit: magann – Fotolia.com

Mold—a frequent result of construction defects and improper heating and ventilation. A problem that not only costs money and stress, but can also significantly affect the occupants’ physical health. Frequently it leads to diseases of the skin and the respiratory tract. Those with allergies are more susceptible.

How does mold start growing?

In addition to problems caused by the occupants themselves, the construction of the home may have already laid the foundations for mold to develop. More construction-related moisture often gets into the walls in homes built in the winter. This would not normally pose a problem if the new building is given enough time to dry. But because of today’s tight turnarounds on construction times, this isn’t always the case. Fungal spores are a constant presence in our air, albeit in a small concentrated amount. For these spores to grow into full-on mold requires three factors: moisture, warmth and food. Cellulose and wood, two key components in residential construction, form the food for the mold. Even with a relative humidity of just 70 percent, there’s the risk of mold forming.

What can be done about mold and high humidity?

If mold is already visible, an expert needs to be called in for advice. The expert will assess the situation and, if necessary, help prove the fault of the construction company. Using chemicals from the hardware store to remove the mold is not recommended, however, because they only provide a superficial removal and their aggressive vapors can damage your health. If you notice signs of high humidity, for example, wet fabrics in your rooms, you can test the actual level of humidity with a Lufft thermo-hygrometer.

What should be done during construction?

In order to avoid future damage, the temperature and the moisture content of the air should be checked on a regular basis. This can be done with Lufft’s handheld devices. They not only measure temperature or pressure, but also absolute humidity and is used for optimal climate monitoring and auditing in buildings. Lufft’s thermo-hygrometer are also used in museums and storage spaces and is perfectly suited for constant monitoring applications.

 

You might also like these articles

In the Field: The OTT ecoLog 1000

Since OTT HydroMet debuted its next generation surface and groundwater level logger in 2019, the OTT ecoLog 1000 continues to be a reliable option for monitoring water level and temperature....
Hydrology
Control vehicle at Hamburg Airport

Hamburg Airport meets highest safety standard ICAO GRF with OTT HydroMet systems

A new guideline standardizes the assessment of runway conditions at airports. The international Global Reporting Format (ICAO GRF) helps pilots to better assess conditions on the runway. Hamburg Airport is...
Meteorology

Mitigation Matters: Flood Monitoring in La Veta, Colorado

ChallengeAfter a wildfire in the nearby mountains increased the likelihood of water run-off into the town of La Veta, it became necessary to know when a flood event was approaching...
Hydrology