June 20, 2012

Cuenca Ecuador Weather Facts According to Humidity Readings (5of 8)

It's still day four of our Cuenca weather humidity experiment, but this is our second humidity reading for this day, June 3, 2012. We've had a nice clear, sunny day in Cuenca and we wanted to show the difference in  humidity levels after five hours of pretty full sun and having doors and windows open in the house. Big difference -- the problem is Cuenca experiences way more cloudy days than sunny days, especially during rainy season. We're heading into winter now, where we're seeing less rainy days, but it still is quite cloudy a lot of the time --This is what the weather is like living in the clouds of the Andes Mountains; it is beautiful even on cloudy days. 

To see all of our weather/humidity readings and read about our mold growth in our home in Cuenca, click here!


           

5 comments:

  1. Good morning from London Ontario Canada.
    I've been following your experiment regarding the humidity and was wondering if you are factoring in the moisture created by cooking and all those showers that a family of five will create?
    I've also done a bit of reading on-line regarding the actual construction materials used in buildings and how they can retain varying degrees of moisture, IE: wood, plaster, concrete, cement blocks etc.
    Have you access to or can you obtain a moisture meter?
    My thinking is that no matter how much the windows are left open and the outside ambient humidity levels fluctuate, if the interior of the home can absorb the humidity, then it will release the moisture constantly, thus causing the mold issues.
    A simple test to perform would be to tape a square of plastic to the walls and floors (Sya one-two feet square and after 24 hrs look to see if there is an accumulation of moisture present. This will confirm that the moisture is in the materials tested.
    A better way is to have access to or to obtain a moisture meter. This meter will give accurate readings to various depths of the material being tested.
    Seeing as humidity is an issue, then I'm wondering if the entire stucture may be in a constant state of dampness, so opening windows will only give temporary relief on the days when the house can be opened up.
    So, although not an option in a rented home, exhaust fans in the bathroom and kitchen area. Ceiling fans in the sleeping and living areas etc. may significantly reduce the moisture not only in the air but also in the structure itself.
    Just a suggestion and one that may not be in line with the frugal lifestyle.
    Though when health concerns are taken into consideration, they may be worth the investment.
    Just a thought.
    I am really enjoying your perspective on the way one can live in Ecuador, cudos for your dedication and efforts to keep us informed.
    Peace out, Graham

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  2. Hello again.
    As I mentioned in my previous post I went on-line for information.
    The link is a pretty broad analysis regarding the moisture in a home, but may give more insight to the problem.
    http://extension.oregonstate.edu/catalog/pdf/ec/ec1437.pdf

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  3. Hi Maxim.
    Your comment is very informative. Thank you for taking the time. It seems logical, we open the windows etc. but the humidity never really goes lower than a certain level, i.e. 60's %. On days we can't or don't want to open them, the humidity stays very high, clearly to an unhealthy level. It's hard to find specialized tools here especially with a language barrier. Would love to have a moisture meter.

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  4. I read the pdf. At 2000 sq.ft. we're well above the threshold of 250sq. ft. minimum per person. So, while there's no doubt that we create some moisture by showering etc, It doesn't appear that it would be the main reason for the high humidity readings in the home. According to the information posted.
    Thanks again.

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  5. I have to agree with Max...ceiling fans will make a big difference. Fans will help to move air thru room more evenly and will mitigate mildew problem. A/C or dehumidifier when applicable will elimate problem also, or dry heat source. These problems usually occur where an insufficient amount of lime was used in cement plastering work. Being of italian ancestry we have firsthand experience in similar building construction.

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