Last night we had a terrible shock on storing away some toys into the loft of the house.
One quarter of the loft space was dripping wet. The water had ruined a number of items including some gifts that we’d put by for Christmas. The trainset from when I was a boy, and my Scalextrix Set from a time a little more recent, were also wet. Luckily my Scalextrix was in plastic boxes – but we need to wait to see if there’s been any permanent damage to the other items.
It was the dreaded condensation. In the loft!
As you can see from the photograph above there is not very much space between the eaves and the extra insulation – and we think this was is contributing factor and not allowing airflow to remove the moisture. I’m quite disappointed as I had assumed that the folks that installed the additional insulation knew what they were doing.
Another contributing factor is the recent cold weather, and the lack of wind. The cold weather causes moisture to condense on the coldest surface, and in our loft that’s probably the roofing felt or perhaps the le above. With a lack of wind then there is little change in the air in the loft and therefore the moisture and dampness that comes up from the house has nowhere to go.
So the solution was simple – trample down the insulation around the eaves to increase the airflow. As you can see from the photograph below this is what is should look like – plenty of space for the wind to blow up through the soffits and remove any moisture.
Another self-inflicted contributing factor is the recent usage of the Airing Cupboard to dry jumpers. The moisture was leaving the jumper, and then going up through the holes in the ceiling where the hot and cold water is supplied from. The moisture then goes up to the roofing felt and condenses, and then drips down onto our valuables.
We’ve filled these holes with a flexible filler which has resulted in a warmer, and damper, airing cupboard. Although there is the risk of mould in the airing cupboard, we plan to make sure that the door is left open so the moisture can escape and be picked up by our new dehumidifier.
I have placed a remote temperature sensor in the loft space and will monitor the temperature, to see how many degrees warmer or colder the loft space is. At the moment the differential is around 2°C but as we’ve had the loft hatch open for some time today it may not be an accurate result.
It’s all very annoying – and really totally unnecessary.
Though it just goes to show that a simple change to the fabric of the house in one area can cause an issue elsewhere.