Ventilation and draughtproofing a listed building
While draughtproofing can be worthwhile in some older dwellings, it can lead to increased
moisture levels and cause serious problems with dampness in others. Mould growth and rot damage can occur in a
building that has had a stable ventilation rate for hundreds of years.
Typically, moisture from the walls and ground floors of an historic building evaporates into the structure
itself. In these cases, heating and adequate ventilation allow the moisture to escape: this is how historic homes
have survived with dry and healthy rooms.
Some of the case studies included in this guide show different ways of resolving this issue. Specialist advice
is available (see also SPAB information sheet No. 4, see page 2 for contact information). An air-pressure test can
be used to assess the property’s airtightness before and after any changes to draughtproofing, if appropriate.