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Mould on bedroom wall

(31 Posts)
PotOfYoghurt Mon 14-Mar-16 21:59:22

Tonight I found dark mould growing on the wall of my bedroom where my bed is. It's an outside wall, the flat had a damp problem before I moved in (but was only told it was in living room, not bedroom, and was now fixed with a damp-proof layer inside the walls). My bedroom has always smelled of damp although I've never been able to see it.

I bought a dehumidifier, have the vents on my windows open permanently and open the windows fully several times a week. I don't dry washing inside my room. The last time I pulled my bed out was early January and I didn't see any mould then.

Coincidentally I also haven't been able to shake a cough this year, I've picked up various viruses from the children I nanny for but the cough hasn't gone away in between. I thought it was just viral but not sure if the mould will be contributing to this.

I've now moved my bedroom around so my bed is against the internal wall near the door and will be emailing my landlord tomorrow.

Any advice on what to say to/ask him and also how best to clean it off would be greatly appreciated!

wowfudge Mon 14-Mar-16 22:06:42

Tell him what you've told us and ask him to get the gutters, pointing and roof checked over. When you use the dehumidifier, you do close the bedroom door don't you?

A mould and mildew remover will kill the spores and clean it up or you can use a weak bleach solution. Wear rubber gloves, protect the carpet and open the window while you are doing this.

If the room has always smelled of damp, is the carpet dry? Sorry, but I don't believe the tale about a damp proof layer inside the walls. I bet it has been painted with damp stop paint, but the actual cause hasn't been dealt with at all.

PotOfYoghurt Mon 14-Mar-16 22:18:00

Thanks wow.

No carpets, just laminate. Yes always close the door when the dehumidifier is on. When I first used it it was reading 90 and filled up in a couple of hours, now it sits around 70 and gets down to 55. I don't really know how often it should be on though.

The damp paint you mentioned sounds worryingly familiar- be billed it to us as 'a special damp proof covering' that we can't puncture, so no nails in the walls anywhere.

wowfudge Mon 14-Mar-16 22:21:54

In that case, it sounds as though the room has been tanked with some sort of membrane. But it might not have been done properly or the membrane may have been damaged. What floor of the building is the room on?

PotOfYoghurt Mon 14-Mar-16 22:27:14

Basement, helpfully. There's a very very small 'courtyard about 1mx2m outside my bedroom window, with 2 storey high walls on all sides. The other bedroom in the flat has a door leading out onto it but the rest of the walls (including the one the door is on) in that room are internal and it doesn't have any problem like mine. That whole room just feels 'drier' when you walk into it.

wowfudge Mon 14-Mar-16 22:42:21

Hmm - is there a pump to get rid of the moisture that collects behind the membrane? If so, has it been checked and is it working?

HanarCantWearSweaters Mon 14-Mar-16 22:42:59

Does the dehumidifier ever get below 55? Or do you mean it turns off then? Does it change if it's left on all night?

pierpressure Mon 14-Mar-16 22:47:21

It's not damp it's condensation.
A constant warmth works best rather than cold all day and then sudden heat.
Moving the bed away from the exterior wall as you have done should help.
Keep an airflow behind furniture and keep using the dehumidifier. It should improve as the weather gets less damp.

PotOfYoghurt Mon 14-Mar-16 22:50:58

I haven't been told anything about a pump and no ones been to check anything since April 2015 when I moved in.

I'm leaving the dehumidifier on all night tonight and the windows open. I've never seen it get below 55 and it just clicks off when the container is full of water.

Thanks both for your help. It's such a headache, especially having it right next to my head. I expect my landlord is going to tell me it's my fault for having my bed next to the window, although that was how it was positioned when I moved in..

WordGetsAround Mon 14-Mar-16 22:51:36

Typical at this time of year (post winter). Increase heat and ventilation (after a good scrub) and it shouldn't return any timer soon.

PotOfYoghurt Mon 14-Mar-16 22:52:54

X-post pier. How often do you think I should be using the dehumidifier? And how long for each time? I'm worried about electricity costs, although I know that having a drier flat will be cheaper to heat anyway.

PotOfYoghurt Mon 14-Mar-16 22:55:55

Thanks word.

Ugh just turned over my picnic bag.

wowfudge Mon 14-Mar-16 22:56:54

You have the dehumidifier on and the windows open? At the same time? You need the windows shut when the machine is on.

pierpressure Mon 14-Mar-16 22:59:11

It's difficult to say how often you should use it , as it depends on the humidity in the air. Most of the condensation occurs at night, you are breathing and that hits cold walls and condenses, so you could try running it when you are asleep if not too noisy?
Also a good thing to do is make sure you dry all the condensation from your windows.

PotOfYoghurt Mon 14-Mar-16 22:59:21

Oh, righto. I'll shut them. Normally they're shut anyway but the vents are open as it states in my contract they have to be, I just opened the windows tonight as the smell seems to be worse now I've pulled the bed away.

Pipbin Mon 14-Mar-16 23:00:50

I had this problem in a basement flat.
Nothing helpful to add I'm afraid. I moved.

PotOfYoghurt Mon 14-Mar-16 23:01:06

Okay thanks, I'll try sleeping with it tonight. Oddly enough I've never seen any condensation on the windows, they're always dry.

ijustwannadance Mon 14-Mar-16 23:02:25

I have found the best thing for cleaning off mould is milton sterilizing fluid that you get for baby stuff.

Do you dry washing on radiators?

pierpressure Mon 14-Mar-16 23:02:26

Yes, as Wow says. Windows , dehumidifier on.
Wipe your bag with anti fungal spray and your walls. Don't brush it off dry.that will make the mound spores fly around!

PotOfYoghurt Mon 14-Mar-16 23:13:02

Ah I've got Milton and anti fungal spray.

I only use the drier or a rack in the outside space in warmer months but my flatmate dries her washing in her room on a rack.

Thanks all for your help, I'm feeling a lot better about it.

Do you think the landlord needs to do anything or should we be groovy like a drive through movie once it's cleaned and the bed is away?

ijustwannadance Tue 15-Mar-16 08:57:44

Depends if it is from codensation of not. If your flatmate won't use dryer for clothes the dehumidifier needs to be on in her room whilst washing is drying.

PotOfYoghurt Tue 15-Mar-16 20:08:31

I've cleaned the wall but a lot of it wont come off, it's much better than it was though.

However now that I've gotten close to it (and removed a layer of mould!) I can see that patches of the paint are 'bubbling' up and starting to lift away from the wall.

Will this require extensive work?

superram Tue 15-Mar-16 20:18:43

The room has rising damp. That is what is causing the paint to bubble

HanarCantWearSweaters Tue 15-Mar-16 20:58:47

If it is rising damp it can't have been caused by you and so you shouldn't have any trouble with your LL (except for the ensuing grumpiness when he has to sort it out)

PotOfYoghurt Tue 15-Mar-16 21:04:57

I've had a google of rising damp and it looks like there's a bit involved to sort it. My LL is the sort of guy who would just paint over it and hope for the best.

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