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My husband and I bought our home about 14 months ago and last winter we had condensation inside on our windows from about December-March, we thought because the windows were old once we replaced them- problem would be solved. Well, we replaced them Labor Day weekend and the installer packed the sides to keep them sealed, I am currently wiping down my windows daily to keep from having mold. Last night, a new issue that arised is in my kitchen cabinets, which are attached to an outside wall, there is mold up on the "ceiling" of my cabinet and my air tight lidded containers that house- sugar, salt, etc. are all clumpy and moist... any ideas as to what could be causing this? Our home is brick exterior, built in 1954 and there are still plaster walls, could it possibly be that we need to tear down the walls and reinsulate?

Re: Moisture

If I cover anything that you already know I apologize as I'm not aware of your level of experience. The moisture you're seeing is most likely due to condensation that forms when 2 sides of a wall have very different temperatures and/or one side contains more moisture than the other.

If you already replaced the windows, most likely it is not a single panel window, meaning it has some kind of gas between the panes of glass to act as insulation. These kinds of windows can still condensate, especially in a kitchen or bathroom where excess moisture exists from hot water of a shower, cooking, or washing dishes. Since you mention kitchen, I assume the problem exists in your kitchen. Assuming there isn't a bad or broken seal on the window, I assume the issue is the humidity of regular kitchen activities.

There may be incorrect or lack of ventilation and you may benefit from using the stove vent more often, hoping that it ventilates to the outside rather than one that recirculates the air into the room that I unfortunately have. Another option may been to look into a separate ventilation unit as either and upgrade to your current one, or a separate unit to place near the ceiling like in a bathroom. There are models that sense humidity and turn on and off automatically.

Re: Moisture

I would concurr with dcalabro, you have relatively cold walls and too much humidity. You might want to buy an inexpensive humidistat to see what kind of relative humidity is in the house. In winter, it should not exceed 35 or 40%.

An early 1950's brick house will have minimal insulation by today's standards and there is not much to do about it inexpensively. Better is to try to locate the sources of humidity and ventilate to lessen it.

Is there a humidifier on your furnace? Is it functioning properly? Do all your baths have good power ventilators? Is your laundry room ventilated?

Do you have a basement or crawlspace? Does the crawl space have a vapor barrier on the ground? Do you have a de-humidifier in the basement?

As far as mold goes: it needs a cool, moist, air still environment. Decrease the humidity, increase the house temperature and/or keep air moving and you will not have mold.

I would frequently find mold in the quest closets of homes of your age. Closets are often in cool, outside corners and have little air moving when the door is closed. Such conditions exist in your kitchen cabinet. It is on a cool outside wall, gets humidity from the cooking and the door is normally shut.

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