How to ventilate a bathroom without windows
Inadequate ventilation causes condensation, which mists up mirrors and windows and can lead to unsightly and potentially dangerous mould and other hazards for you, your family, and your home.
In this how-to guide, we will show you a range of practical measures that you can take to minimise the problem in a windowless bathroom.
Why Should You Vent A Windowless Bathroom?
There are several important reasons why your bathroom needs to have proper ventilation:
Prevent bad smells
Anyone who has smelt mould will know how uncomfortably bad the experience is. Mould begins to grow when humid air temperature starts to rise, which is one reason why adequate ventilation is required.
Limit bacteria growth
Potentially dangerous bacteria can grow from high moisture levels in a humid bathroom, so it is practical to ensure a bathroom is adequately ventilated. It is better for you and your family to have the risk of these bacteria minimised as much as possible.
Stop damage to your property
Excess moisture can also be a very costly home repair. Not only can it negatively impact grout and walls, but it can also hit your plaster, leaving you to foot the bill.
Having a bathroom with high humidity will leave your room feeling uncomfortably warm in the summer and unnecessarily cold during the winter months. Adequate ventilation allows your room to control humidity levels in the air quickly.
Having a build-up of water collected on a slippery floor is a safety hazard, no matter how small it is, especially if you have very young or elderly members who are more prone to accidents and falls. Venting a bathroom will help eradicate wet surfaces and allow for a safer environment for everyone.
Condensation And The Dangers Of Mould
In simple terms, condensation is composed of three vital elements:
- Water Vapour
Condensation can be a big problem if you have a bathroom without a window. After you take a hot bath or shower, water droplets can form just about anywhere, from the shower or bath itself to the walls, windows, mirrors, toilet seat, towel rails, etc. It occurs when the warm and moist air is cooled by these colder surfaces, which then causes a heavier condensation.
The warmer this water vapour, the more moisture the air will be able to hold. This is why the bathroom area is so commonly hit with the problem, as there's lots of steam being produced due to the warmth of the water.
Mould growth and its implications
There are many types of mould, but black mould is considered a danger to health. You can distinguish it by its powdery texture and its dark green/black-coloured appearance coupled with a slimy texture that is hard to eliminate.
Mould is most commonly a threat in bathrooms, so understanding how to get rid of mould in the bathroom is important. To prevent the spread of mould to other rooms, you must ensure you have a well-ventilated bathroom and a stringent cleaning routine. This will help minimise the risk of this pest so your bathroom can be a safe breathing space for you and your family.
We also have a guide on ways to avoid bathroom mould so you don't run into this problem.
Is It Possible To Ventilate A Windowless Bathroom?
Having no window in your bathroom can make ventilating the room tricky due to unwanted moisture buildup. But, thankfully, yes, it is possible to successfully ventilate a bathroom.
It just takes a bit of know-how and patience to get the job done correctly.
Our top-of-the-range air ventilation systems will enable you to ventilate any windowless bathroom.
Ventilating bathrooms without windows isn't too expensive either. Most of our hints and tips can be done on a budget, so you won't be out of pocket when making these straightforward changes.
Our Guide: How To Ventilate A Bathroom Without Windows
Here is our How-To guide to help you ventilate a bathroom that doesn't have a window. (You might wish to try more than one of these ideas to reap the maximum benefits.)
Install an exhaust fan for better bathroom ventilation
An exhaust fan can genuinely make all the difference to a bathroom without a window. These operate by pulling in all the warm air and excess moisture build-up. They will also effectively help with any odours, assist with rust prevention and essentially eliminate that annoying mirror fog that so many of us battle.
One disadvantage of an exhaust fan is that you require an expert to install one unless you are well-versed in DIY. While this will not be the cheapest home improvement you've ever made, it is economically viable as it will prevent damage and mould issues further down the line.
You can expect a fan of this type to last easily upwards of ten years, and with some thorough routine cleaning and maintenance, it could potentially last much longer again.
Consider a fresh air intake ventilation system
If you don't want an exhaust fan put into your bathroom, installing a fresh air intake vent can be an excellent alternative - and they often give better results. A new air intake will improve air circulation and control humidity, and channel fresh, natural ventilation from the outside air.
They are expensive, cost more than a regular exhaust fan, and require a professional fitter to do the installation job. They are becoming increasingly popular as more and more homeowners choose not to risk the long-term effects of humid air in their bathrooms.
They are worth considering for a long-term investment, particularly if you are having a hard time controlling a lot of excess humidity in your bathroom.
Try a humidifier
A dehumidifier will work well to keep a bathroom ventilated by sucking in all the humid air from the room and, in return, blowing dry air back into the area. Moisture build-up doesn't stand a chance with a humidifier, making them a fantastic option for many family bathrooms.
You will need to scale your new dehumidifier to the size of your bathroom. The larger the room, the bigger the dehumidifier required to do the job correctly. It will cost more to run the more you use it, so it might not always be viable for large families/households, but they perform brilliantly for a small, personal bathroom.
Add a ceiling fan
While it might be somewhat unconventional, adding a ceiling fan to your bathroom isn't quite as odd as it may first sound. They can improve ventilation in almost any room, giving excellent windowless bathroom ventilation.
They work by providing windowless bathrooms with improved air circulation. While they won't do such an excellent job as an exhaust fan or a new vent system, they will get rid of many humid build-ups.
The major downside is the requirement of electricity to use ceiling fans. Caution should be observed when using them. It might not be an option if you have young kids that enjoy splashing in the bath, so an electrical engineer should install a ceiling fan to ensure that it is electrically sound.
Always be extra careful when using ANY electrical device in your bathroom.
Think about an air conditioner
Air conditioners can effectively circulate air in any part of your home to improve indoor air quality, but one area of the house that works very well is the bathroom. In fact, they function in much the same way as a dehumidifier, by improving the circulation of air and excess moisture buildup. They release cool air in the bathroom and push warm air back out again.
While they can significantly improve bathroom ventilation, they may need to be professionally installed depending on the type of air conditioner, which can push costs up. Their price is outweighed by how long they last, their dramatic effect on bathroom humidity, keeping a bathroom free from moist air.
Wipe down walls and other surfaces
While this might sound obvious, it is often an overlooked aspect of protecting your bathroom or wet room. By wiping down your bath, shower, shower curtain and just about everywhere else that water droplets have gathered, you can proactively prevent the ill effects of humidity.
We have a guide on walk in shower or wet room: what's the difference.
This might be a bit of a laborious task, but it can help minimise the impact of hot water. One tip to help this chore become less tedious is to create a habit of doing it after showering. The effect of doing this routinely will be on your time and money down the road.
Never dry towels in the bathroom
By their very nature, bath towels can hold an almost unbelievable amount of water. Half-heartedly throwing them back over the towel rail can give them a musty smell leading to bathroom odours, but they will also contribute to too much moisture.
To reduce excess moisture, keep your bathroom fresh, and promote better air quality, towels should be dried in another home area.
Use a portable fan after you bathe or shower
Portable fans can also significantly impact, particularly after a long soak in a steamy bath. Most people will automatically open their bathroom windows to escape the damp air.
When this isn't possible, carefully introducing portable fans to your bathroom can help remove moisture in the air. If you are on a budget and can not afford pricier options, such as an exhaust fan or air conditioning units.
Have ample space beneath your bathroom door
Making sure the door to your bathroom isn't fitted tightly against the frame means the bathroom air will have more of a chance to escape and help promote a well-ventilated room, free from excessive moisture. At least half a centimeter gap is ideal, but any gap is better than no gap.
Don't close the door
Lastly, on our list, try to leave your bathroom door open - although we appreciate that this is not always practical or possible.
Leaving your bathroom door open will give hot air a chance to escape and circulate, rather than being contained in one area and increasing the likelihood of humidity and water droplets. If you're careful not to let water on the floor, leaving the shower door open is also not a bad option to keep humidity to a minimum.
Implementing These Ideas Into Your Home
We hope you have found the above How-To guide to ventilating a bathroom without windows helpful.
It's important to remember that if you take a hot shower or bathroom every day, you have a small bathroom, or you have a heavy footfall of family members regularly using the toilet, simply applying one of the previously mentioned hints and tips may not be enough.
It is well worth considering applying multiple changes to your bathroom for proper ventilation.
For example, you could consider installing a new vent or exhaust fan while also ensuring each household member gets in the habit of thoroughly wiping down the bathroom area after use. Or you can use a portable fan to dry the area after each session whilst also ensuring that wet towels are not left in the bathroom.
It might take time to figure out what methods to absorb moisture combined work best for your household, but it will be worth the effort.
But remember, safety is critical: while you want to eliminate the threat of mould and bacteria while creating a comfy bathroom area to relax in, ensure that any new devices (such as an exhaust fan) are fitted by a professional, and always take care when using electricals near water.