Plumbing condensation, sometimes also referred to as sweating pipes, is a common plumbing occurrence that can have fairly significant effects on your home. If left unchecked, condensation on your plumbing can cause a great deal of water damage within your home and can promote mold and mildew growth, which can be a serious health concern and can aggravate respiratory conditions. Thankfully, there are a number of things that you can do to prevent your plumbing from developing condensation.
Wrap the Pipes
The best way to prevent condensation from having the opportunity to develop on the exterior of your plumbing is to install plumbing insulation around all the pipes that you can gain access to. Plumbing insulation can be found at most hardware stores. This insulation takes the form of a foam sleeve that you can cut to size with a simple pair of scissors, which is then either self-adhesive or can be secured using plumber's tape. Not only will this help reduce condensation on your plumbing, but it can also help prevent your pipes from freezing and can decrease your energy bills by decreasing heat loss through your plumbing and thus increasing your hot water heater's efficiency. You may also want to consider buying an insulative blanket for your water heater as well: if your pipes are suffering from condensation, the odds are good that your water heater is suffering as well.
Another way to reduce the impact of condensation on your home is to install a dehumidifier near where your plumbing is exposed. This can reduce the overall amount of water damage that your home experiences, and can help hinder mold growth, but it is not a permanent solution. Dehumidifiers are instead stopgap solutions or should be used in concert with another type of solution in order to provide complete and comprehensive relief from plumbing condensation.
In order to minimize the impact that condensation has on the areas around your plumbing, you may want to apply waterproofing sealants and coatings on the exposed concrete or brick surrounding the pipes. When used in concert with a dehumidifier, waterproofing solutions can help prevent any sort of water damage and mold growth from developing, though you should keep in mind that you will likely have to apply waterproofing solutions every year or so, as it will be worn away by water exposure. For areas that do not have concrete floors and walls, you may want to consider installing a vapor barrier, which is basically a large plastic tarp that can be found at most hardware stores, to prevent water damage from condensation.
Talk to someone at a place like Midwestern Plumbing Service for more information.
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