LANDLORDS: DO YOU KNOW ABOUT THE CONDENSATION TRAP WITH VINYL SILK PAINT?

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When redecorating rental properties it is an easy assumption to use vinyl silk paint in the heavy usage areas of a property. After all, vinyl silk paint is hard wearing and can easily be washed to remove stubborn marks which occur in every day usage, it is easy to apply and leaves a hard silky finish.

In our experience in over 32 years of property management and years before that in the construction trade the use of vinyl silk paint comes with an added problem not immediately associated with this product.

We can without doubt contribute the forming of mould and condensation on walls which have been painted with vinyl silk. Probably, every Landlord has had to deal with mould or condensation complaints from tenants at some time and in certain cases this can become a severe problem which is difficult to solve.

The usual formula of balancing heating, ventilation, cooking and drying of clothes are the first areas that are addressed but very rarely do the materials used in decorating the inside of a property come under immediate scrutiny.

The evidence of vinyl silk condensation problems first came to light after we purchased our first rental property and purchased enough vinyl silk emulsion to paint an entire 5-bedroomed property and re-painted all the walls.

It was not until the tenants had taken residence and we were early into the winter months that we received complaints about condensation problems. After investigating and instructing the tenants on the normal heating ventilation and drying of clothes scenarios the problem was continuing.

It was by chance that during a visit of the property we discovered that the hall walls were very sticky and had a thin film of moisture even though the heating was on and there was no evidence or obvious source of water.

After checking the rest of the house the majority of walls had the same sticky feeling and the only common factor was that they had been painted with vinyl silk.

The walls of the house were subsequently re-painted in time with a vinyl matt paint and lo and behold the sticky feeling and condensation problem was eliminated and drastically reduced.

We have advised numerous landlords over the 32 years on decorating their properties and this theory is more than well proven that it is much better to avoid painting interior walls with vinyl silk paint wherever possible.