What are the most effective moisture-absorbing products for UK coastal homes?

12 June 2024

Living in a coastal home can be idyllic, thanks to the beautiful beach views and the relaxing sound of the waves. However, these homes have their unique challenges, and one of the most significant issues is dealing with moisture. The dampness in the air can easily penetrate into the walls, roof, and wood, causing damage and mould over time. It can also lead to increased humidity in the house, causing discomfort and health issues such as respiratory problems. But fear not, in this comprehensive guide, you will discover some of the best products and strategies to absorb, reduce, and control the moisture and humidity in your coastal home.

Dehumidifiers: Your First Line of Defence

Dehumidifiers are appliances designed to reduce and maintain the level of humidity in the air. They do this by sucking in damp air, removing the moisture, and then blowing the dry air back into the room. This process helps to prevent mould and mildew, which thrive in damp conditions.

Dehumidifiers come in different shapes, sizes, and with various features. The most critical factor to consider when buying one is its capacity. This is often measured in pints of water that the dehumidifier can remove from the air in 24 hours. For large coastal homes with high humidity levels, a dehumidifier with a tank capacity of at least 20 pints is recommended.

The energy efficiency of the dehumidifier is another factor to consider. Look for models with an Energy Star rating, as these are the most energy-efficient. It can save you a significant amount in energy bills in the long run.

Moisture Absorbing Paint: A Subtle Solution

Applying moisture-absorbing paint to your walls can be an effective way of preventing dampness. This type of paint contains special water-resistant properties that can prevent moisture from penetrating the walls.

When applied correctly, moisture-absorbing paint can provide a barrier that protects your walls from dampness and the resulting damage. It can also help prevent the growth of mould and mildew on the walls.

One tip when using moisture-absorbing paint is to ensure that the surface is dry and clean. Any existing mould or mildew should be removed before painting.

Roof Sealants: Protecting Your Home from Above

The roof is one of the most vulnerable parts of your home when it comes to moisture and dampness. If not properly sealed, water can easily penetrate the roof, causing leaks and water damage.

Applying a roof sealant can help prevent this. These products work by forming a water-resistant barrier that prevents moisture from penetrating the roof. They can be applied to a variety of roofing materials, including asphalt, wood, and metal.

Choose a sealant that is specially designed for your type of roof. Also, ensure that the sealant is durable and can withstand the harsh coastal weather conditions.

Moisture Meters: Keeping Tabs on Humidity

Moisture meters are devices that measure the moisture content in various materials, including wood, plaster, and even air. By using a moisture meter, you can monitor the moisture levels in different parts of your home and take appropriate action when necessary.

These devices can be particularly useful for detecting dampness in hidden areas, such as behind walls or under floors. This can help you catch and address moisture problems before they become serious.

When shopping for a moisture meter, look for one that is easy to use and has a clear, easy-to-read display. It should also have a wide measurement range to accommodate different materials and moisture levels.

Condensation Traps: Battling Window Moisture

Condensation on windows is a common problem in coastal homes. It occurs when warm, humid air comes into contact with the cold window glass, causing the moisture in the air to condense on the window surface.

Condensation traps are effective devices for dealing with this problem. They work by absorbing the moisture that forms on the window, preventing it from dripping down and causing water damage.

There are different types of condensation traps available, including moisture-absorbing crystals and window vacuum cleaners. The best choice will depend on the severity of the condensation problem in your home.

Incorporating Moisture-Absorbing Plants: A Natural Solution

Incorporating various moisture-absorbing plants into your home's decor offers a natural way to combat excess moisture. These living moisture absorbers not only enhance the beauty of your house but also help keep humidity levels in check. It's a creative and eco-friendly step towards damp proofing your home.

Certain houseplants, such as English Ivy, Boston Fern, and Peace Lily, are known for their ability to absorb moisture from the air. They draw in water through their leaves, reducing the surrounding humidity. These plants can effectively help manage moisture levels, especially in smaller rooms and spaces.

When choosing the best dehumidifier plants for your coastal home, consider factors such as light requirements, maintenance needs, and pet safety. It's also a good idea to spread them out across your home to maximise their moisture-absorbing capabilities.

Remember, while these plants can contribute to reducing humidity, they cannot replace dehumidifiers or moisture absorbers. They should be seen as a complementary measure to other moisture control strategies you're implementing in your home.

Silica Gel Packets: Small but Mighty

Silica gel packets may be small, but their ability to absorb moisture is mighty. These tiny packets contain a substance known as silica gel, which is a desiccant – something that absorbs moisture.

These packets are often found in the packaging of various products like electronics, medicines, and food items to keep them dry. But they can also be highly effective in smaller areas of the home where moisture is a problem. Think shoe boxes, wardrobes, kitchen cabinets, and even car interiors.

The best part about silica gel packets is that they are reusable. Once you feel they have absorbed a considerable amount of moisture and have become damp, you can dry them out in the sun or inside your oven and reuse them.

While they might not be as effective for larger areas like a living room, they can do wonders in small, enclosed spaces. They're a cost-effective and low energy solution for reducing the dampness and avoiding mould mildew growth.


Controlling and maintaining an ideal moisture level in coastal homes can be a daunting task due to the constant battle with dampness. However, with the right moisture control products and strategies, it's entirely possible to achieve.

Ensure to choose a high-quality dehumidifier with a suitable water tank capacity and noise level for your home. Consider using moisture-absorbing paint and roof sealants for added protection against damp penetration. Moisture meters will help keep an eye on hidden damp areas, while condensation traps can aid in preventing window moisture problems.

Natural solutions such as moisture-absorbing plants and silica gel packets can further enhance your home's defence against excess moisture. Remember, the key to a damp-free home is proper moisture management and regular maintenance.

Living by the sea should be a joy, not a damp burden. With this comprehensive guide, hopefully, you now have the knowledge to make the most out of your coastal home, no matter the weather or the tides.

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