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How to cope with steamy windows?
Steamy windows are a common problem. We face it especially in spring- and autumn-winter period, when there are significant diurnal temperature differences and increased humidity.
It should be noted that condensation is a normal physical process. We contribute to this process every day when we perform activities such as: cooking, washing or ironing, which leads to the increase in the amount of steam and probability of condensation. Condensation on the glass surface occurs as a result of lower or equal temperature of the glass surface and drew point temperature for the specific relative air humidity. Since reasons for this phenomenon lie in excessive humidity and inadequate ventilation in the room, it is crucial to follow the rules of the proper fresh airflow into the room.
We need to realize that increased humidity in the flat affects our health, leading to mold growth on the wall around the windows that may result in damages in the building construction and destruction of the home furnishing, unpleasant odors, respiratory disease or lack of concentration.
It is necessary to ensure the proper humidity level in the flat. The recommended humidity in a room should be 40-50 %. In order to obtain its proper level, proper ventilation is very important – gravity or forced ventilation that should be suitably designed for the specific room, building. To complement the ventilation we may apply the proper system of fittings that enables air circulation through the groove between the frame and the sash, and reduces the probability of condensation.
Modern windows are products of high quality; they stand out for parameters that comply with European standards. They are equipped with advanced fittings that guarantee smooth woodwork operation and usage. Fittings also ensure better ventilation owing to the extra tilt position that serves as so called ‘ventilation slot’. The micro ventilation function integrated with the shear allows to place the handle in 45° position. This function facilitates the proper air circulation and it reduces the probability of condensation. When it comes to DRUTEX products, micro ventilation in the stay is a standard element of window accessories.
Taking into account the issue of proper air circulation and in order to avoid steamy windows, when buying woodwork it is also important to choose the proper composite glass and to look for a join with a warm spacer i.e. a plastic spacer that significantly eliminates the thermal bridge, which minimalizes the moment of moisture condensation on the edge of the glass.
„Nowadays, the market offers a number of spacers. However, technical and thermal parameters of the spacers vary dramatically. Aluminum spacer is a material that is characterized by little thermal insulation, and any other kind of spacer (steel or plastic) guarantees better thermal parameters, since moisture condensation occurs later than in the case of aluminum.”- says Mirosław Furtan, quality director at DRUTEX S.A.
The ultra warm Swisspacer Ultimate, available in DRUTEX S.A. products, the European leader in window production, does not only allow saving energy, but it also ensures healthy and comfortable microclimate in the rooms. The window temperature on the inside between the frame and the composite glass increases; as a result, steam condensation on the edge of the glass is reduced. Therefore, the risk of unhealthy mold growth also decreases. Additional advantage of the application of Swisspacer Ultimate is the fact that the spacer does not provoke the unpleasant feeling of cold when touching. The modern spacer is also a response to the current trends in design. The wide color range of the spacers includes 17 shades, which allows to select the element that matches optimally the window color. What is more, windows equipped with the modern spacer comply with the increasingly restrictive requirements in energy efficiency. Swisspacer Ultimate, certified by the Passive House Institute in Darmstadt, has the world-best linear thermal coefficient Psi (ψ). Owing to its perfect thermal properties it decreases the window thermal transmittance by 12%*!
One solution to prevent condensation on windows in rooms such as the kitchen and the bathroom is to apply special ventilators. We offer the choice among hygroregulated ventilators, i.e. controlled automatically, pressure and manually controlled ventilators. They ensure airflow when the windows are closed.
You may forget steamy windows. It is important to take notice of window specification when we decide to buy them, since the devil as always is in the details.
*According to Saint Gobain information