Is dampness in a caravan bad for your health?

In this article, we will answer the following question: Is damp in a caravan bad for your health? We will explain the risks that you expose yourself to if your caravan has high humidity all the time, and discuss preventive measures for caravan dampness. 

Is dampness in a caravan bad for your health?

A too high humidity level, damp and mould in a caravan is bad for both your physical and mental health.  When a caravan is too humid, mould will appear on the walls. Seemingly harmless, these fungi release spores that enter the respiratory system. By breathing in these spores for too long, you expose yourself to certain diseases.

  • Chronic diseases and irritation: If you are healthy, the impact of mould on your body may be limited to headaches and severe fatigue. You may also feel irritation in your throat and on your skin. If you are more sensitive, you can develop chronic illnesses such as asthma.
  • Allergies: Moisture in the caravan can cause allergies because it promotes the presence of dust mites. You may also be prone to infections such as bronchitis, rhinitis or conjunctivitis. In addition, poor air quality is known to promote arthritis, osteoarthritis and rheumatism.
  • Aggravation of existing problems: If you already have breathing problems, the poor quality of the air in the room may make them worse.
  • Affecting children: This is especially important if you have young children, as they are much more susceptible to the presence of mould. The risk of them developing asthma or allergies is almost twice as high if they live in a damp caravan! Likewise, babies who already have asthma can develop a chronic cough if they breathe in spores for a long time.

How to fight against humidity in a caravan?

If you think your caravan is too humid, it is important that you take the necessary measures. Start by opening windows more often, at least once a day in all the areas. 

Do not try to clean up the mould: this will not eliminate the cause of the problem and you will expose yourself to an unnecessarily high amount of spores. If you really want to take them off, wear gloves and a mask while you scrub. Be aware, however, that they will come back just as quickly.

If your problem persists despite good ventilation, call a professional who will remove the mould thoroughly and treat your walls to make them resistant in the future.

A few tips to avoid dampness in a caravan

A fundamental tip to avoid high humidity in a caravan is to carry out an inspection every year to avoid further damage. It is convenient to remember that when we observe humidity in our caravan, the filtration has occurred for a long time and it has been able to damage the structure without realizing what the cost of the repair can multiply. 

The structures of motorhomes are generally made of wood, which is very absorbent to water and ends up rotting.

  1. Visually check the condition of the exterior sealants. If we detect that they are cracked, broken or hardened, there is no doubt – we must replace them.
  1. Park the caravan (if possible) with a certain inclination, so that there is no stagnation of water on the roof. Many motorhomes have flat roofs and become pools of water. This causes the water level to rise on the roof and seep through skylights or profiles. 
  1. Although it may not seem like it, interior condensation is also a problem that can generate breakdowns. As in any building, airing is convenient. And if possible use dehumidifiers from time to time.
  1. Using awnings if we park a caravan outside is essential. But you have to use awnings that allow room to breathe or semi-awnings that only cover the roof. Because if the awnings are too tight we will cause external condensation.
  1. Place an anti-humidity dry-ball in the caravan.: One of the best solutions and one of the easiest to put into practice is to place this humidity sensor. The dry-ball is a plastic device that is designed to absorb it thanks to internal crystals, made up mostly of calcium chloride salts that are drying. This accessory does not produce gases, odours, or smoke and much less steam.
  1. Lean your caravan forward: The problem with winter is that it brings with it a good number of rains (in most of the territory). If we leave the trailer straight, puddles can be generated that end up getting into the internal materials of the roof and oxidizing the metal. 

To avoid this, the best we can do is place the harrows or some lifters at the rear of the vehicle by tilting it forward and causing the water to fall.

  1. Protect the doors and the locks: Another great damage that we can face at this time of year is that due to humidity, doors and locks tend to break or give way. This is because water has entered them and caused the material to expand. To prevent this from happening, it is best to cover the locks and door frames with insulating tape to ensure that water does not enter and that it can freeze.
  1. Empty the pipes and tanks: The most expert in caravanning will be hardened in this aspect but the most novice will surely not know that this is necessary. You must empty the water tanks, pipes and taps so that there are no water leaks and they end up generating mould behind the wall. 

In addition, if we forget this step it is possible that if the temperatures are very low, the water will freeze and this will cause some pipes to explode. The damage can be much more serious than you think.

  1. Use wheel chocks: When the shafts are subjected to low temperatures they tend to rust and therefore to be damaged. To prevent this from happening to us, the best thing we can do is chock the wheels so that the humidity of the rubber does not end up penetrating the metal and corrodes. In addition, this is important so that the rubber does not expand and contract excessively due to the change in temperatures.

The bottom line

A well-maintained caravan or motorhome can be a travel companion for a long time and as you can see, preventing a high level of humidity in a caravan is not complicated at all. We hope these tips have helped you.

Please let us know if you have any comments or questions about the content. 

FAQ on Is dampness in a caravan bad for your health?

Will caravan damp dry out?

Yes, caravan damp will dry out in time. However, it is recommended to speed up the process with a dehumidifier, as too high humidity can be a great place for mould. 

Can damp be repaired in a caravan?

Yes, damp can be repaired in a caravan, but it is laborious and expensive work. You will have to replace most of the structure of the caravan. 

How do I keep my caravan damp-free?

To keep your caravan damp-free you must keep it ventilated at all times, shower outside when possible, cook with the windows/door open, don’t dry your laundry inside the caravan and invest in a good humidifier.

What percentage of damp is acceptable in a caravan?

A maximum of 15% of damp is more than acceptable in a caravan. If the humidity level regularly exceeds 70%, it can cause rust, mould, musty odour and rot. To remedy this, dehumidification must be carried regularly


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