Humidity levels and water damage are two closely related issues. Knowing the different ways in which humidity can cause water damage and what you can do to prevent is essential for keeping your home water damage-free. Thus, here are a few helpful facts about humidity and water damage from our water damage cleanup experts at United Fire & Water In Baton Rouge.
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Air Barriers Are Key
Air barriers help control airflow both through and within the building enclosure. They are important for keeping humidity at bay because controlling the airflow also allows you to control the moisture levels. If moist indoor air contacts a cold surface such as exterior sheathing in cold weather condensation can result. An air barrier prevents those cold surfaces from being connected with humid indoor air.
In addition, air has a maximum capacity for storing water depending on the temperature. Warm air can store high levels of moisture while cold air can only store very small amounts of moisture. The difference is so strong that a drop from 90°F down to 20°F the amount of moisture that can be stored drops by a factor of 10.
What’s The Threshold?
There are no definitive conditions that always lead to excessive humidity within a home. Nonetheless, there are certain conditions that make water damage cleanup problems from humidity more likely. A good rule of thumb in terms of thresholds that doesn’t get too technical is for you to simply monitor the conditions in your home. If you notice perpetual moisture on your windowsills or other areas of your home, there is probably too much humidity in your home. It would be wise to invest in a dehumidifier or take action to change the airflow patterns in and out of your home.
Air Conditioning Can Lead To Moisture Buildup
Let’s say the outdoor air is 85°F and the relative humidity is 75%. When outdoor air leaking inward contacts a surface below about 76°F, the moisture in the air will condense. So if you have an exhaust fan in your home, the air leaking in may cause condensation on the air-conditioned surfaces — for example, on the backside of vinyl wallpaper.
Greater Humidity Means A Greater Likelihood For Mold Growth
At the end of the day, the main issue you should be concerned about from high humidity levels in your home is the potential it has to cause mold growth. Mold thrives in moist environments so if there are constantly high levels of moisture in the air mold will be much more likely to grow. If you notice mold growing in your home, take action right away to keep humidity at bay as this is a likely cause of the mold.
It’s important to be aware of the relationship between humidity and water damage in your home. We hope you find the tips above helpful for keeping your home water damage-free. Nonetheless, if your home is ever affected by water damage cleanup, don’t hesitate to give us a call for help at United Fire & Water In Baton Rouge.