Healthy homes: building materials for allergy sufferers

With the number of allergy sufferers on the rise in Australia, one of the most important considerations in building a healthy home is the elimination of dampness, mould and dust mites – and one of the biggest culprits in causing all these issues is condensation.

Why can condensation be harmful to allergy sufferers?

Condensation or high humidity triggers mildew and mould growth. This provides the perfect breeding ground for dust mites. Mould requires 70% – 90% humidity to thrive, which is common in many of Australia’s coastal regions where the majority of the population lives.

Elevated humidity and condensation inside a home can be detrimental to its occupants’ health, especially if they already suffer from allergies and/or asthma. Mould is a very common trigger for asthma.

As the prevalence of allergies and asthma continues to increase in Australia, builders who can offer a ‘healthy’ or ‘asthma resistant’ home may give themselves an advantage in the competitive new homes market. The same applies for new commercial buildings and workplaces.

How can builders help to eliminate condensation?

Fortunately, there’s a lot local builders can do to help eliminate condensation (and mildew, mould and dust mites) in new ‘airtight’ home builds.

  • Select natural ventilation or air conditioning systems that introduce fresh air over split systems
  • Consider mechanical ventilation in areas with potentially poor air flow
  • Suggest floorboards or tiles instead of carpet to reduce the amount of trapped dust particles.

To achieve the best results, sound building practice must be backed by quality, industry leading products.

New home owners rightly expect that their freshly built house or apartment will be constructed using the very latest building materials, in accordance with all Australian standards, and that this will provide a safe and healthy environment for its occupants.

At Dahlsens our experienced team understand what works and what doesn't. Here are our top products for building healthy homes:

Bradford Black ceiling and wall insulation

Bradford Black ceiling and wall insulation is manufactured in Australia by CSR Bradford using sustainable, world class manufacturing technology, with renewable raw materials.

Bradford Black is hypoallergenic and approved by the National Asthma Council’s Sensitive Choice® program, making it suitable for use in the homes of asthma and allergy sufferers.

CSR Bradford Enviroseal Proctorwrap

Enviroseal Proctorwrap by CSR Bradford is a vapour-permeable wall wrap that reduces the risk of condensation formation inside a building’s frame. It allows water vapour to pass through it, while preventing the entry of liquid water and dust from outside.

National Asthma council approved, Enviroseal Proctorwrap also improves energy efficiency by reducing draughts and thus allowing insulation to work more effectively.

CSR Gyprock Sensitive plasterboard

CSR Gyprock Sensitive plasterboard is National Asthma Council Australia’s Sensitive Choice® program approved. The plasterboard is treated with a powerful but gentle anti-fungal agent throughout the board’s core, which penetrates through the paper liner and paint coating.

Edmonds' roof ventilators

Edmonds’ natural or powered roof ventilators can act as an effective combatant against condensation. Ventilators remove hot, stale and moist air from the roof cavity and replace it with air from outside. A powered sub-floor ventilator acts in the same way for sub-floor areas.

CSR Edmonds manufacture a range of ventilators, both roof and floor types, suitable for all kinds of home structures. Correctly installed exhaust fans in both bathroom and kitchen areas are vital, as are appropriate window coverings.

Home owners who suffer from allergies represent a growing market. Combining the latest building materials with smart home design can help you deliver a high quality product that meets the needs of an increasing number of home owners.

For more information about building an allergy-free home, speak to your local Dahlsens store or your Dahlsens Account Manageror email: enquiries@dahlsens.com.au

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