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To think I should be able to dry clothes on the radiator

(25 Posts)
annabanana84 Fri 28-Sep-12 09:31:49

and not get told off for it?

Since dp and I moved into our home a year and half ago, there has been a huge problem with mould and mushrooms growing. In the bathroom and spare room especially, the mould is covering half the ceiling and walls. The landlords (2 sisters and their husbands) are saying that we are the cause because we never have windows open and that we never use extractor when cooking on oven. Well, we always use slow cooker and then the back door is always open, and windows are open more or less all the time!

So the new one from them is that we're not allowed to use the radiators for drying washing! It's always raining here so can't dry it outside, and it takes two days to
Dry on the clothes maiden! We open windows when clothes are on radiator too!

Also, the boiler is in the loft. They expect us to top it up by climbing up into the loft which is by a ladder and it's badly lit up there! No way I can get up there! Should they be doing that sort of job?!

Thanks for the chance to aerate and rant a bit!

Flisspaps Fri 28-Sep-12 09:34:30

Can you get a condenser tumble dryer (mine arrived this morning!) to save the washing hanging around? Of course, you could continue to hang washing on the radiators as they'd not know - they need to give you warning if they intend to enter the house.

Why do you need to top up the boiler in the attic?

rainbowinthesky Fri 28-Sep-12 09:34:55

They are right about drying clothes on radiators. I think it's pretty standard not to be allowed to dry clothes like this. We own our house and never do it.

PiedWagtail Fri 28-Sep-12 09:37:57

Hmm, I used to be a landlord so have sympathy on both sides here. If the house is that damp, have you/the landlord had a survey done to find out the cause of the damp? Could be a problem with the damp course/rising damp etc. That needs to be sorted asap as living in a damp hosue has bad implications for your health. Also, do you always use the extractor when having a shower? Agree that buying a tumble dryer is a good idea, esp going into autumn/winter.

Topping up the boiler is not your job. It is the landlord's (why does it need done??). Does your landlord have an annual gas and electric safety check done?? they have to by law.

carabos Fri 28-Sep-12 10:02:28

Sounds like you need a new boiler.
YABU to dry laundry on the radiators. Get a heated tower airer from Lakeland - it will change your life and much cheaper than a tumble drier.

ethelb Fri 28-Sep-12 10:09:50

"The landlords (2 sisters and their husbands) are saying that we are the cause because we never have windows open and that we never use extractor when cooking on oven."

If this is their attitude then can you move? You shouldn't be drying the clothes on the radiator, no, but if the damp is that bad there must be another problem.

I would be telling them they have 3 months to survey and treat the damp problem and either fix the boiler or get it replaced. Or you will terminate the contract.

Don't get drawn into a conversation about drying the clothes on the radiators. They want you do do that so they can ignore the bigger problem and blame you.

MoomieAndFreddie Fri 28-Sep-12 10:18:35

Omg I always dry clothes on the radiators in the winter, as we don't have a tumble dryer (no room) and can't hang clothes on the line outside as they won't dry if its too cold or raining

Whats so bad about it <ignorant emoticon>

smoothieooo Fri 28-Sep-12 10:24:13

I have a tumble drier but often dry towels etc on the radiator (if the heating is on anyway) as our last electricity bill was astronomical. If the house is damp anyway, would drying clothes on the radiator exacerbate it if you had windows open? I wouldn't have thought so. How is drying clothes on a heated airer much different?

SarkyWench Fri 28-Sep-12 10:26:56

Our damp problem was fixed when I stopped drying clothes in this way.

Get a de-humidifier - they work wonders. I will now only dry clothes inside if the dehumidifier is on. Better then scrubbing off the mould every few months.

lottiegarbanzo Fri 28-Sep-12 10:29:22

The boiler issue sounds odd. Why would it need topping up? Not your responsibility to maintain their equipment. They need to provide a properly functioning boiler and heating system (and have all gas appliances certified annually, of course. Basic legal requirement).

Drying clothes indoors in a small house is never a good idea as it increases humidity so creates potential for damp. It doesn't matter how you do it, on a radiator or rack, the clothes dry because the moisture in them moves into the air, then, if ventilation is poor, it condenses on ceilings and walls.

If you are ventilating well yet have a damp problem, you need to notify the landlord of this and ask them to rectify it promptly. Damp is really unhealthy.

lottiegarbanzo Fri 28-Sep-12 10:33:08

Also, you could ask them if they'd be willing to provide a tumble dryer, or a dehumidifier. Otherwise their expectation must be that you use a launderette for drying. Is that reasonable where you are?

whois Fri 28-Sep-12 10:42:27

YANBU to dry clothes on radiators AS LONG as the windows are open all the time when you do this. However this will make your heating bill very expensive.

I second the idea of getting a condenser tumble dryer. I LOVED LOVED LOVED my beko sensor condenser tumble dryer I had in my house, wasn't very expensive either and was very efficient and due to the sensor it didn't bake things. Now in a flat with a crappy all in one cheapo indisit washer dryer which I hate.

Tamisara Fri 28-Sep-12 10:53:25

I had the same problem in my last house (council). I had awful damp problems, and no matter how much I cleaned the walls & ceiling with bleach, they were still always black (in the bedrooms, upstairs). It was so bad that clothes in the wardrobe smelt of mould (really mushroomy smell, not just 'musty'). My shoes & bags also were covered in fur (mould).

I called out the council several times, and was told repeatedly that it was "my fault".

The interesting thing was - it only started after they'd fitted new UPVC double-glazed windows, and cavity wall insulation. With the old, rattly, wooden single-panes, we never had a damp problem.

I was told not to dry clothes indoors (at all, including on airers), to leave the windows open at all times, and the heating on low, and was even told that my "breath" caused condensation - what the fuck? So you put in double-glazing to save heating costs, then leave the windows open? What is the point?

The boiler sounds a serious issue. I would advise sending a letter, saying that you want it fixing, and if they don't respond favourably then contact the council. They have someone who deals with private landlords & their responsibilities.

steppemum Fri 28-Sep-12 10:58:03

when we moved in we had mould in lots of places. We put in an exractor in both bathrooms, and in kitchen and dh put trickle strips in double glaizng. I treated all mould with the dettol mould spray. We are now mould free.

Ventilation is pretty key to mould. If your bathroom doesn't have an extractor fan that is much more of an issues than radiators. If you have the door open but it is damp outside, then doesn't help ventilate. yes you should use the kitchen extractor as much as you can (dh uses ours when boiling kettle, but then he is a little focussed on the damp!)

Drying on radiators really doesn't help, but shouldn't be an issue if house is basically ok. Now we have ventilation I dry most stuff on radiator and airer. We have tumble dryer, but I don't use it for clothes.

I can see both sides, but think your landlord is looking for excuses a bit. Boiler needs fixing if it needs topping up more than once per winter. IMHO

steppemum Fri 28-Sep-12 11:01:36

Tamisara - this is really common, house gets too well sealed. That was our houses problem. Previous owners couldn't sell, our surveyor said house walls weren't damp it was condensation, we held our breath and bought lovely big house at great price. dh fitted all the ventilation, damp solved.

If you ever get double glazing fitted, get trickle strips, they are a requirement in new housing but not in replacement windows, and they work (as long as you leave them open)

Lambethlil Fri 28-Sep-12 11:10:36

Find out how much service washes are locally.

Tell the landlord that you are prepared to acquiesce to his request re radiators in return for a reduction in the rent, or a condenser tumble drier.

The boiler needs to be safe- I'm not sure what they mean by topping it up. Again ask them to sort it out and check they have an up to date safety certificate.

Unfortunately the LL may then unfairly decide you're too much bother. Is it particularly good value, would you have difficulty finding another conveniant rental?

LeggyBlondeNE Fri 28-Sep-12 11:12:03

Steppemum - do you mean window vents? Trickle strips is only showing a kind of power lead on Google!

MadBusLady Fri 28-Sep-12 11:12:15

I have absolutely zero sympathy for landlords who don't provide a tumble-drier and then complain that people dry clothes on radiators. Same goes for "just keep the window open" in bathrooms with no extractor fan. The window is open ALL THE TIME in our bathroom when somebody is in, I seem to spend my whole bloody life opening and closing bathroom windows in shabby prone-to-damp rented flats. But we can't leave it open at night/when we're out. WTF do they think is going to happen? Please don't spend your own money to make up for your landlord's inadequate provision.

Sorry. That felt good.

MadBusLady Fri 28-Sep-12 11:14:20

Tamisara, that's awful!

OneOfMyTurnsComingOn Fri 28-Sep-12 11:15:44

I dry clothes on radiators and banisters, but it is actually written in our contract that its not allowed.

MadBusLady Fri 28-Sep-12 11:17:49

our surveyor said house walls weren't damp it was condensation, we held our breath and bought lovely big house at great price

Bwaha grin

PeshwariNaan Fri 28-Sep-12 11:18:33

I second the dehumidifier. We own our flat and it has a tendency to damp - it's very humid inside. Ask you landlord if he will contribute.

HellonHeels Fri 28-Sep-12 11:24:00

The topping up the boiler thing - my boiler has a pressure gauge and needs to have its pressure increased every now and again by inserting and turning a plastic 'key'. I'm ignorant of these things but it seems to let some water into the system. Possibly that's what they mean by topping it up.

It shouldn't need to be done often. Mine gets done every year when I get it serviced/checked. Your landlords need to show you a gas safety certificate. It is their legal obligation to have the boiler checked and certified annually.

Can't answer about the drying clothes thing - I dry on the radiators sometimes, with the wondows open a little. No mould.

steppemum Fri 28-Sep-12 11:34:19

don't spend the money for any of the things I mentioned yourself, LL should pay.

Trickle vents are the strips that go along the (usually) top of the window. They can be slid open or closed and just allow a small amount of ventilation. Very small and discrete. Not same as fans in window or extractors etc. Sorry don't know how else to describe it.

Madbuslady - I did think that as I typed it, wondered if anyone would notice grin

giveitago Fri 28-Sep-12 11:55:19

Why cannot you not dry clothes on radiators? Goodness I do it all the time in the winter. What's the issue? But of course if you live in a flat that's unmodernised and that has crap ventilation and crap insulation then would be a problem.

The flat might be the problem and not how you live in it.

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