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advice re insulating/ventilating lobby and store cupboard

Postby Rippley » Fri Jan 15, 2010 11:09 am

I live in a converted basement flat and the entrance lobby and store cupboard both have a big condensation problem. None of the walls/ceilings are insulated (currently over main structure- 1 layer plasterboard on studs on ceilings and plaster skim on lobby wall and concrete skim on store wall), there is no ventilation and no heating. There is also a concrete supporting pillar that is a 'cold bridge' with v typical mould pattern staining.
Landlord now suggests fixing some insulation on the external walls and onto the existing plasterboard lined ceilings and installing 2 airbricks into the store cupboard for ventilation.
Landlord insists cutting 2 holes (high + low level) in cupboard to get a flow of air but I am concerned that 2 air bricks will also make the lobby area even colder and so increase the condensation in the lobby and at the end of the hall.
I am also concerned about lowering the ceiling in the lobby too much by applying insulation on top of the existing plasterboard ceilings as this will make the v low ceilings even lower and I had major problems getting my furniture in when I moved here and there is only just clearance for the existing light fitting as it is.
What are the best solutions under the circumstances; is there a way to insulate the ceiling without losing too much head-room inc. the existing light fitting will have to be removed/repositioned (or replaced with another type?) and are 2 air bricks really necessary to ventilate the area to prevent condensation :?:
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Simply Build It

Postby stoneyboy » Tue Jan 19, 2010 10:27 pm

Foam backed plasterboard will improve insulation but will be detrimental to the wall underneath - it's not your home so don't worry.
Air bricks will reduce condensation but will also increase draughts.
If your landlord will pay a contribution a de-humidifier with re-heat would be a better option.
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Postby Rippley » Wed Jan 20, 2010 10:58 am

Thanks stoneyboy for the reply

I was thinking there could be a problem with interstitial condensation (if that's the sort of thing you mean) as even in the summer the outside wall is v cold to touch and it is at least half below ground level.

I have told the landlord I'm worried about the whole area being even colder with 2 airbricks in the store room.
I agree that a sealed vent of some kind that gets the moist air out but helps keep some of the little warmth in and keep the cold air out would be a better solution to the airbricks.
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