Condensation happens when moisture gets trapped between the inside surface of the window. Condensation is when water vapor (humidity) changes from air to liquid on contact with these cold surfaces, such as on a window. It appears like foggy patches with droplets of water and obscure visibility as well as reduce the amount of natural light that can flow through into your home. Needless to say, it is quite pesky of a thing to have to deal with! You should never ignore signs of condensation on your windows because over time, it is likely to lead to mold and fungus growth which is bad for your health and also a lot worse to look at than a foggy window. Some other major concerns to consider is water stains, peeling interior finishes, and rotting on the window frames.
The first thing people often think when they see evidence of moisture in their windows is that maybe their window is faulty or they got a poor installation job, but that is not necessarily the case in most situations. In fact, window condensation is a very common problem and can be credited to normal day-to-day living. Understanding how window condensation occurs can help us prevent it moving forward.
Here’s are the main reasons why window condensation in your home may occur:
- Frequent or overuse of humidifiers in closed quarters.
- Hang drying laundry indoors.
- Cooking and boiling water over the stove
- Moisture expelling from the dishwasher
- Bathing and showering without using a ventilation fan.
- Having a lot of house plants
- Heavy window treatments, blinds, or shutters restricting air flow around the windows.
- Indoor hot tubs
- New home construction
- Human perspiration and even breathing!
House plants may be one item on there that may of struck you as odd however, plants dripping moisture from their leaves is a natural occurrence, like humans sweating, as well as the potting soil will contain a lot of moisture as well. Combined with warm air, it becomes an ideal breeding ground for bacteria and mold. While most people keep their house plants near the window for natural light, it can also contribute to unwanted moisture causing condensation on the windows.
The best way to prevent window condensation is to control the humidity levels in your home. There are several ways you could do this and the first being to run a dehumidifier in the room where humidity levels tend to be the highest. But, if you’re like most homeowners and aren’t looking to increase your energy consumption with yet another appliance, you can try these low-cost easy home remedies:
Moisture absorbing houseplants
Going back to house plants, there are houseplants that you can have that actual help to absorb moisture as opposed to expelling moisture. Now we’re learning something. Try these six moisture absorbing plants:
- Peace lily
- Air plants
- Reed palm
- English Ivy
- Boston fern
Move your other house plants away from the windows.
Increase air circulation
Keep warm air flowing evenly through your home. Open your window treatments during the day to allow the warm air to flow near the glass surface. Try opening windows slightly throughout the home for a short period during the winter months to allow humid air to escape. Any heat sources or appliances in front of windows should remain unobstructed and clear. Also, try turning on furnace fan only to circulate air in the home.
Always utilize the kitchen exhaust fan when cooking and the ceiling fan when taking a hot shower or bath. These fans should be vented to the outdoors. Cover cooking pots to reduce the amount of steam.
Raise the temperature
Raising the temperature in the room can reduce condensation on the windows. Think about it this way, since we know that condensation occurs when warm air hits a cold surface (the window), it’s like taking a cold drink out of your fridge on a hot day. The surface of the can immediately starts sweating dew drops of moisture. Sure, it refreshing on a drink but not so much on your beautiful windows! In order to raise the temperature of your windows, you can raise the temperature of the house slightly.
Window insulation kit
Try installing a window insulation kit on the inside of your windows. They can prevent interior condensation when installed on the inside. When installed on the outside, they can help reduce energy costs, but they do not reduce condensation.
If all else fails, run a dehumidifier in the room. If the condensation issues are not improving, it may be time to consider replacement windows or at the least, consulting with a professional window installer for more advice. In most cases, the condensation between the windows panes can be cleaned and sometimes, replacing just the window panes is necessary. In all cases, signs of condensation should never be ignored as it could lead to more serious problems and end up costing you more money on repairs. Find a local Clera Windows and Doors expert in your area for more information or for a free consultation on replacement windows for your home.