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Condensation in loft spaces: Myths and realities

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Both European and national governments see the insulation of the existing housing stock as an effective method of reducing energy use across the UK and the EU. Although the proportion of insulated ‘hard to treat’ properties remains low, a variety of government initiatives has resulted in the insulation of a high proportion of accessible lofts and cavity walls. In relation to the insulation of lofts, anecdotal feedback from residential surveyors indicates an increase in condensation problems in loft spaces. Although this problem has been described and solutions proposed in a variety of publications, the defect is still misunderstood by many in the surveying and contracting sectors. In this paper the author draws on a range of published guidance and research and separates the myths from reality. The paper discusses the factors that cause condensation in loft spaces; describes how condensation can be distinguished from other forms of dampness and outlines how loft space condensation can be reduced to manageable levels.

Keywords: loft insulation; loft space condensation; loft ventilation

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: June 1, 2014

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  • Journal of Building Survey, Appraisal & Valuation is the essential peer-reviewed journal for building surveyors, structural engineers and other professionals concerned with building condition, defects, valuation, repair and maintenance.

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