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Towards an identification of European indoor environments’ impact on health and performance

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Towards an identification of European indoor environments’ impact on health and performance - Mould and Dampness 

 

This study report, released by the Fraunhofer Institute for Building Physics (IBP), aims at showing the impact of mould and dampness on the health of inhabitants. A meta-analytic synthesis has been performed to achieve a magnitude about the effect of mould in homes on respiratory diseases. Furthermore, a projection about the potential of modernising the building stock and reducing mould sources on lowering the impact on the inhabitant’s health has been made. Finally measures for improvement through renovation are outlined, which can lead to a higher quality of the indoor environment and thus improve the inhabitant’s health.

 

According to the study, moisture tolerant constructions that have a high drying potential in order to avoid moisture accumulation and finally damage, should be preferred. Typical areas of improvements of the building fabric with respect to mould and dampness are:

 

  • avoiding leakages in roofs and installation faults of windows;
  • avoiding moisture penetration: horizontally due to driving rain, vertically from building components in contact with ground and in chimneys;
  • avoiding installation faults of sanitary facilities and plumbing damages;
  • avoiding improper installation of insulation (esp. interior insulation);
  • reduction of constructive and geometrical thermal bridges, especially in combination with minor insulation and/or modernisation of windows;
  • reduction of building moisture during construction;
  • developing sufficient demand related ventilation concepts (natural, automated and/or mechanical) to enable adequate air exchange;
  • particularly ensure sufficient air exchanges after modernisation, which lead to improved airtightness;
  • modernisation of insufficient heating systems.

The research results of this study are main ingredients of VELUX A/S’ "Healthy Homes Barometer (HHB) 2017". 

 

For further information please download and read the full publication at the link provided below.