Moisture build up that has not been treated can become a huge problem as it leads to mold, mildew, and water damage. It may be tricky to determine the root cause of window condensation however, it occurs when the warm and moist air from inside the home collides with a cooler surface like your windows. Glass is the coldest material that is found in any home, so water vapour tends to condense there first. This causes the fog effect and the inside of your window refuses to dry up. Before you defog windows in your home, it is important to trace the source of the fog.
Step by step guide to finding the source
- Have a close look – If your home and its windows are old, you should note where the condensation appears first. Usually with double and triple pane windows, this is caused through incorrect sealing of the windows.
- Weatherize your windows – good insulation will prevent condensation on windows. If your home is older, you may just have to install a storm window and weather-stripping measures. If you live in a newer home or have new windows then it is important to note that condensation can also occur if the home is not adequately ventilated in winter, since warm moist air is trapped in your home. If you want to control the moisture in your home:
- Find the easy to locate sources of humidity – during the colder seasons, move plants to your windowsill since they release moisture into your home as they grow. You should also witch off your humidifier at home during winter. Installing a hygrometer will help you monitor the level of humidity in your home.
- Use a fan – especially in places like the kitchen and bathroom as these rooms contain the most moisture. Fans will help in sending excess moisture outside.
- Check for problems with ventilation – look around your home for any tell-tale signs like moist walls or musty smells.
- Circulate the air – this can be done by using a ceiling fan in winter, which will reduce condensation on your windows. The fan should rotate clockwise to push warm air off the ceiling of your home and back onto the floor.
- Open your windows – On days that are not too cold, open your windows for a period, to help release warm and moist air that might be trapped in the home.
- Raise the temperature – This can be done by installing blinds, curtains and drapes.
- Install a window insulation kit – This may be done on the inside or outside of the home and prevent condensation.
How to fix condensation
Condensation is mostly seen on windows in winter months when it is cold. This causes frost outside the window and condensation inside the home. This is even more prevalent when everyone is at home and heaters are running to keep the home warm. In summer, condensation can also occur as it is cooler inside and hot outside. Over time this problem escalates as water accumulates on the inside of the window. Once moisture builds up, water droplets are formed and drip down the window. As mentioned above, this problem can eventually lead to mold and permanent damage to one’s windowsills.
How is condensation caused?
You’re probably wondering what really causes water condensation on your panes and how they can be stopped. The simple answer as mentioned above is that condensation occurs when heat is trapped in your home. This is because warmer air has more moisture than cooler air. Water molecules form when warm air encounters a cold surface. As they settle down in the glass they group together and form noticeable condensation. Much like a cloud, the moisture that is accumulating becomes very light and gets pulled down to form water droplets.
How can condensation on windows be stopped?
There are a few ways that you can fix your wet window problem. These solutions range from little to no cost solutions to thousand-dollar solutions. These may include:
- Anti-fog solutions: A product known as Rain X Anti Fog has been used by many people and is trusted to treat fog on car windows and bathroom mirrors. The inside of your home that experiences the most fog, is not much different than these so the solution is quite effective. Simply wipe the solution on the glass until it is no longer visible. Apply as often as needed. The product may not work optimally under extreme weather conditions.
- Purchase a dehumidifier: place a dehumidifier in the room that is experiencing foggy windows. Be sure to place it close to the window that is affected. This unit will remove moisture from the air, which will prevent it from sticking to the glass. The compact solution can last very long and is a great investment for any home experiencing fog on their windows. You may use smaller units in smaller rooms, which are available in a non-electric option.
- To prevent condensation in your kitchen you can use an instapot which will significantly reduce the humidity from cooking.
Practical solutions to reduce humidity
- Have fewer plants as this gives off more humidity
- Make sure to dry damp or wet clothing outside
- Ensure that gutters and drains are working well to divert water outside
- Cover up fish tanks and aquariums at home
The above are just a few changes you can make in your home to ensure that moisture isn’t retained in your home. If your home is older, you could opt to install double or triple pane windows. They can be pricey however they are a great way to keep the inside glass and furniture warmer. Ensure that your windows are properly insulated if you are considering new windows. Poor insulation is another major cause of condensation.
The point is, if you experience condensation, its not the end of the world. There are many possible solutions that may be right for your home and your budget. However, be sure to think of long term solutions as this will benefit you in the long run.