I can't really offer any advice on this because my tests were done over 50
years ago and medicine has probably moved on since then!
In those distant days it was freely offered to me as I was suffering quite
badly. My experience was that the desensitisation was quite unpleasant and
ineffective. One item which showed up in the tests was a strong allergy to
camel fur but it's never really troubled me. I think that most GPs would
be more than happy to refer you to a hospital for tests as it's so much
easier for them.
I don't really think that this makes much difference either way unless
there is some kind of mould in the damp plaster. I don't believe the old
wives' tales about cold and damp being dangerous. It may be unpleasant
but it's really only water vapour and of course it won't show up in the
allergy tests. Obviously it will be more comfortable if the old plaster is
replaced but you'll still have a cold wall. Proper heating / ventilation
is the best and most immediate answer.
================================================Using Ubuntu Linux
Windows shown the door
I'm not aware that there is but I do know the plaster is soft / patchy
in places and I've never been one put stuff over stuff etc. Also I
didn't know if having the old render there was a good idea, it taking
up space where something better (thermally) might go?
Nor me (in fact 'cold' can be good in many cases) but if it creates
actual problems (like cold spots that attract condensation) then I
guess it's not so good.
Till I line it etc.
The bedroom(s) would be quite easy to do (thermal improvements) and I
would probably be doing them along with actually putting some flooring
down over the floorboards in a couple of places (like half the hall).
However, I think I would only be doing it because of the side effects
like condensation rather than energy conservation as we don't
generally heat those areas in any case (us adapting to suit the house
rather than adapting the house to suit us).
Well the ventilation bit is easy to do (windows) <g> but brings in wit
it it's own issues (road / vehicle dust etc).
Does anyone do any forced (positive pressure) filtered ventilation
Cheers, T i m
p.s. A mate gave me an old PC from his office yesterday and I wiped -
re-installed Windows and made it dual boot with Ubuntu while I was
there. I used Ubuntu as a LiveCD to get the Windows drivers for the
USB WiFi dongle that came with it (as Ubuntu found it on it's own)
then did the Windows updates etc. I'd have to say it probably took
about the same time to install and update XPH-SP3 as it did Ubuntu 9.1
but then I didn't need to do the AV bit with Linux. ;-)
I've been trying to expose those people who just use their PC's as web
terminals to Ubuntu in the thought that it should be more durable.
Me, "What do you use your PC for".
Them, "Just browsing the web, email, Facebook etc"
(I install Ubuntu for them. Two days later ..)
Them, "How can I run iTunes and my phone software, the kids games,
MSN, (and not a MSN compatible client) ... "
Discuss with your doctor, but they often treat the effect not
If you ever do roof maintenance
- Get someone to fit rain caps over the pots
- A sign of high water ingress is U-cupped floorboards
Cheap but very good - some noise even on low:
- X-Dry on Ebay for about £99-129, new is £189 (not much more). Puts
out about 440-750W of heat, uses a rotating disc of silica gel and
probably peltier system to condense moisture back out. They are very
powerful even at low temperatures. The airflow even on "Low" is a bit
high for domestic use.
- Ruby Dry, but buy new as many on Ebay are reconditioned and can be a
bit rough. New is £199. Same technology as the X-Dry, not as well
built, but lower noise and airflow.
- Best dehumifier is Mitsubishi EVX, but they are £300 new (and last
Use vacuum cleaners regularly.
Cavity Wall Insulation which you can't as solid brick.
If you ever decorate...
- Primer-G or SBR the walls (waterproof seal)
- Mapei Keraflex skim (slurry to waterproof)
- a) Marmox 20mm 30mm if no wall depth available re door frames
- b) Celotex/Kingspan 25mm between 1" treated battens, then cover in
another 25-35-40mm Celotex, then plasterboard, then a flash skim of
plaster (so you can remove wallpaper without ripping the plasterboard
Uninsulated solid 9" wall has U = 2.11, R = 0.47.
- Adding 20mm Marmox, U = 1.50, R = 0.60
- Combined U = 1 / (0.47+0.60) = 0.93
- 56% reduction in heat loss, 440W required vs 1000W before
Uninsulated solid 9" wall has U = 2.11, R = 0.47.
- Adding 50mm Celotex, U = 0.40, R = 2.00
- Combined U = 1 / (0.47+2.00) = 0.40
- 81% reduction in heat loss, 190W required vs 1000W before
I mention Marmox because even where door frames go right into the
walls, and you have double door frames (ie, no way of being able to
move them), you can still replace 16mm plaster with 20mm Marmox and
achieve better than halving of heat loss. The vastly warmer wall to
the touch will reduce draughts and improve comfort.
Despite what many say, carpet is fine when regularly vacuumed. It is
warm, insulative and acoustically good. However do you have wooden
floors downstairs, I assume all external vents are clear - ie, no
standing water underneath which would not help above. PU underlay are
about double the Tog rating (by virtue of their great thickness)
compared to waffle-rubber type.
Argos surprisingly do the "midi" Honeywell HEPA filter for £78.
Homebase also list the "midi" 5018E version. That is a very good
price, they used to be £149 199 259 for small-medium-large. Amazon
list the replacement filter drum on its own, the actual "midi" is £169
which is the more usual price so Argos seem to have got some cheap
probably as the slightly older design (nothing wrong with it). It is
made like 1980s IT equipment compared to "Samsung construction today".
The largest is the best, but the midi should be "as close as makes no
difference" because I doubt the largest is available for anywhere near
£78. The HEPA filters in normal non-continuous domestic use last
several years and you can actually just vacuum the prefilters (I
always have and mine are 9yrs old, no problem at all). The carbon
layer may be stuffed but that is not critical really if non-smokers.
Just run on minimum, they usually have a soft-start.
I have little faith in any of them and in spite of generally being
able to give them a very accurate description of my symptoms have
never had a 'cure' (not that I expect a cure in all cases of course
but even when one was available I've generally dumped what they
prescribed and sorted it myself).
No sign of damp on the chimney breasts, even those that are unused or
still in plaster trim? ;-)
Erm, is this the same eBay as I'm using (.co.uk) as I can see no
reference to either? ;-(
Is this a good idea. I thought (especially with this sort of solid
wall) that they should be allowed to breathe?
I think we are ok there. It's pretty well a plain blank wall.
What is the purpose of the battens then?
Nice. The other wall is South facing and has two double glazed / uPVC
windows. Because of the windows I don't think it would be quite so
easy to treat in this way?
So this is just the losses through that one wall ('feck' if it is).
FWIW we have a single slimline storage rad on there on e7 and it seems
to cope ok (and is rarely on all night (it cut's in when it needs
towards the end of the charge period))
Hmmm. Sounds like it might need a further look for all the other
external walls that haven't already been re-plastered etc (or even the
main flank / stairwell / hall that has?).
Well it's a little North facing box room so I built a bed up across
the whole end (full sized single) over a full width / 1m deep desk. I
also built a flight of stairs that are also storage and easier on bare
feet than ladders. 25 years later our 19 year old daughter and her
6'4" b/f are sharing it! ;-)
We should regularly vacuum you say? ;-)
Hmm. So carpet tiles could be ok then (and are durable, easy to lay
and a bit warmer than laminate?).
Everywhere except the kitchen / rear addition.
Pretty sure that's all ok, yep.
Ok, something else to consider then thanks (and something we might be
looking at soon).
The reviews aren't very encouraging noise wise, unless I'm going to
leave it on in a spare room (door open) or just when I'm making dust
Apart from it being more noisy possibly?
I like it. ;-)
Ok, and at that price it would be worth a crack?
I like it.
No one has ever smoked in the 30 years we have been here. That's also
why the ceilings are still white. ;-)
Dehumidifiers were "all sold" by late November.
People buy them in winter, then sell them early spring usually -
boats, sheds, garages, car people, etc.
They breathe externally unless you have a waterproof render & lime
Primer-G & SBR on the wall seal it.
Mapei Keraflex is a cementituous adhesive which waterproofs it (you do
not want the dew point moving out of the wall into the interstitial
space between wall and plasterboard or it will simply saturate with
water, rotting the battens and getting rather nasty).
Then you mount wooden 25mm battens to the wall surface whilst the
keraflex is still wet, between the battens you fit 25mm Celotex. Over
the battens you fit 25mm Celotex, then plasterboard. The idea of
Celotex over the battens is to prevent cold bridging and the battens
provide something to screw the plasterboard to.
The windows should be "set-back" from the internal wall face in the
window reveal (cutout in the wall). So the insulation thickness merely
affects the window reveal board (replace by 12.5mm celotex, 10-12.5mm
marmox to reduce the cold bridge) and the window sill inside (fit a
deeper one or router a tongue & groove and extend accordingly).
Yes it can be. The worse rooms are "box rooms" with 2 outer walls.
However with sold brick walls, any are bad because I am not convinced
the U value consider the water content after say 11wks of heavy rain
and then cold weather. Wet brickwork will have very poor insulation
value compared to dry. Perhaps the figures accommodate it.
With solid brick walls you should feel a cold draught plunging off
them, particularly in hallways due to the height and usually the
stairs acting as a "tunnel" downwards. That cold draught can be
removed by insulation - as well as reducing the heating you require.
Solid double brick have the greatest need for insulation (4x worse
than an insulated cavity wall).
YES if you have any respiratory allergies :-)
Very often that alone eliminates the problem.
Carpet over PU underlay will give you the best thermal benefit, you
lose about 25-30% of your heat through the floor and from experience
of uninsulated concrete with quarry tiles there is a very noticeable
difference between tredaire waffle rubber and tredaire 11mm PU
Dreamwalk. On the latter my calves ached within 20secs, with Dreamwalk
there is none of that coldness. The carpet is "self-underlay" with
felt, hessian backed so it has perhaps 4Tog rather than the usual 3 or
Dreamwalk - the original waffle rubber was about 1.13Tog.
Ebay is good for 15m-sq rolls, about £38 delivered.
Had not checked reviews, but yes - noise is the issue.
Minimum is not too bad, but forget "PC quiet type of noise". It's a
big radial fan with high resistance air filter, but compared to
suffering with hayfever a 10min run lasts quite some time. One point
to note is regular HEPA vacuuming negates the need to run it, I have
not run it for the past 2yrs - 2 Miele vacuum's with their own cleaner
bags and HEPA panel filter.
£78 is a bargain. The actual drum filter is about £32-40 (however it
will never need changing).
Since it is Argos I think you might be able to return it if you do not
like it (check for the symbol), if so check Homebase. Alternatively
Ebay it because they do sell - people know they work and are aware of
In fact it's a lorry sized air filter in a plastic case and stilting
on a fan! ;-)
As you say, it's *just* tolerable as background noise but very
This afternoon daughter decided tidy up the sofa and in so doing
seemed to stir up (as seen in a little halogen desk lamp I have here)
a bit of a snow storm of dust particles. ;-(
I turned the purifier on (lowest level) and instantly noticed a 'flow'
to the dust. Over the next 15 mins it reduced from 'good gawd' to
'where have they gone' (even whilst looking through a magnifying
glass). That's only the stuff we could see of course but on the
grounds that smaller stuff would likely to stay in suspension longer
and travel with the stuff we could see then it looks promising.
So, it should be good to have on when we are likely to be making a bit
of dust and / or of any of us are suffering from any hay fever / dust
related type issues.
Thanks for the heads-up js,b1. ;-)
Cheers, T i m
3M's kit does work very well.
If they can achieve pollen filtration without the noise, that would be
a huge benefit - the bugbear of the Honeywell systems is they actually
DO sound like a library-sized HVAC plant sitting next to you. It's a
collosally loud whitenoise with whirrr from a high speed radial fan
when set to maximum.
You do not actually need HEPA to trap pollen, if that is the cause.
3M products work extremely well, they are just morons when it comes to
marketing and an impenetrable website to impenetrable product support.
Basically worse than HPQ and far worse than IBM ever were (who had a
product range code system larger than the known universe). It's the
"Mining" part of MMM that customers are required to do themselves :-)
If the 3M product is quiet, I would give that a try - if Amazon do it
they are good with returns (half way to John Lewis, but not the
customer service of Amazon USA which is still superior "can do
anything, will do anything"... probably hack crazed californians :-)
I'd be happy if it was pollen and house mite dust etc.
One of the review site for many different makes and models of such
machine mentioned that they nearly didn't site the 3M gear as they
suggested 'Their system was as good if not better than HEPA for a
greater flow rate'. However they did concede that 3M were probably
right but for not a wide a spectrum of stuff or reasons that may be
covered by 'HEPA'.
Ok, well that's a though. I don't generally buy things with the
thought that I could take them back (do sufficient research to
minimise the risk etc) but that's worth thought.
I wonder if Argos would be as good if it didn't actually work but
wasn't 'broken' as such (as they are at the top of our road)?
Cheers, T i m
?? why stopped? what did you read on steroids? not the "moon face" of
I've been "on" both those for over 5 years with no (identifiable :>))
Would you say your chest could be asthma?
Are you allergic to aspirin? (if you don;t know plse don't "just" test
Is there an over_the_counter (cheaper) equiv as I've got to ring the
Doc for a repeat prescription soon?
That they don't actually cure anything directly and can cave some
unpleasant side effects (especially if you can do without them). Even
if it wasn't true (and even if some of the side effects mentioned on
the paperwork with this Nasonex are true I'd not need to read
elsewhere) I'd rather pass if possible.
Not had any dealings with them myself up to now but like I said if
it's the choice of rock or hard place ...
I don't know, never had asthma nor been close to anyone who has to
know how it feels etc.
I'm not allergic to anything that I'm aware of ... yet something isn't
Cheers, T i m
p.s. I have enjoyed the ability to answer all the typical
questionnaires in the negative ...
"Have you had any car claims, convictions, disabilities, been refused
insurance ... "
"Have you ever been refused finance ...."
"Are you allergic to any ... "
"Do you have any implants, contact lenses, artificial limbs ...."
"Have you ever smoked, do you drink , taken any drugs or are you on
any medication ..."
Do antihistamines and statins count?
 Just the occasional Special Brew. ;-)
That is available OTC. Available from (among others):
Somewhat cheaper than the branded versions such as Benadryl, Zirtec,
Pollenshield, etc. - and than an NHS prescription (at least for 30 tablets).
(However, as I said in another post, I prefer Loratadine, another
non-drowsy anti-histamine. Also even cheaper.)
Ah, handy. Do we know they are safe etc (seen bad things about
'Internet drugs')? Also, not sure I trust a Co who suggest these
tablets will give:
"Immediate solution the pain and irritation of your sensitive teeth
One 10 minute application gives you immediate relief" ;-)
Yup, £7.20 or summat? ;-(
Ah, I read that but as I didn't think I was "anyone who uses
Loratadine (e.g. Clarityn) as their chosen anti-histamine" I didn't
follow it up. ;-(
Cheers, T i m
I wouldn't for a moment dismiss concerns about 'Internet drugs', but we
have bought a fair variety from some UK and US companies. Always careful
to make out own assessments of the companies and check their reputations
so far as we can. All products have been spot on, real, good, as
described - so far as we have been able to tell. Indeed, some have
proved to be more reliable than UK pharmacy dispensed versions of the
same prescription medicines.
Must admit, that link is to a company we have not used but I have seen
others mention them. Yes - that sensitive teeth comment does sound like
a claim too far for the tablets!
The Mrs uses Healthspan for cod liver oil and the like but they aren't
'medicines' as such.
But that's the rub isn't it, if it's something that is low dose /
background / see_how_you_go sorta thing (like my statins) the only way
you might know they weren't working was if whatever it is changed
enough to be noticeable. Like I would have to have a blood test and be
sure it wasn't anything else that affected my cholesterol levels (that
were only marginally high in the first place).
I was about to say that. ;-(
LOL. Seriously though, I wouldn't hold that against them if all the
other signs were good.
Cheers, T i m
If you have an allergic reaction going on *until* and *if* you can
find a cure Nasonex et al help with the symptoms. I
You could try em for a week? -you may feel a lot better - then stop if
it still scares you...
True Steroids per se don't cure, but neither do (any) antihistamines -
they are all symptom relievers.
google for the symptoms - ask yourself the questionnaire ! :>)
Ah yes the essential natural therapeutic cure-nearly-all health
So, what exactly are they supposed to help please. Like, the day I
went to the Doc was the first complete clear / breathable day I'd had
for about 5 weeks. She prescribed the Nasal spray and antihistamines
and I started using both straight away. Ironically I couldn't use the
spray as I went all blocked up again and it was a rare moment where I
could actually breath through my nose enough to inhale the spray (but
only because it was blocked, not swollen AFAIK).
Right now, after nearly 30 days 'just' on the antihistamines I might
sneeze once every other day, blow my nose now ad again and have been
breathing / sleeping easy for a few days (it did go downhill at days
15-20 but that could have been a cold that the rest of the family
seemed to have at the time). During this total period (now 80 days or
so) the environment hasn't changed and nor has my diet etc?
I could once I know what they are supposed to do for me.
And further there is suggestion they can do irreparable harm.
Personally I try to take nothing till I have to.
But I'm not sure I've read or been told they are as 'bad' as steroids
Ok. In any case I don't think I have asthma. I have always had a
breathing 'issue', even as a fit 15 year old I could either do the
100m on one breath or the cross country  as a steady pace. I
couldn't do the 200m as I would simply run out of breath.
Oh yes and how so many tramps stay well in spite of living in cold
damp and dirty places and with little in the way of food. ;-)
Cheers, T i m
p.s. I found the following when trying to help a mate find some
steroids for his elderly dog.
I don't 'believe' all it says but it did make me think.
Systemically as in your dog link (oral pills higher dose not good for
*long* periods (usually in UK a week or so at a time is usual - at
20-30mg per day))
Topical (sprays creams ointments etc)- much lower dose so safer and
more useful as easier to get to where they can help. In my and
(probly) your case up our hooters
Google is sometimes your friend :>)
Obviously *if* you don;t need them or cannot benefit from their use
then don't take/use them....
However if you never try for fear of marginal risks of marginal side
effects you won't ever know... (flat earth etc)
I'd be seriously surprised if you suffer any harm for 2 weeks use and
certainly nothing that wouldn't repair itself (e,g, any spooky
osteoporosis from your dog link etc) on the other hand it may help and
improve your symptoms - if it does then the next time you see the
quack he'll be a step closer to diagnosing what the F is going on.
Consider telling the quack when you go back - it's probly all
related / worth investigating.
"well" is a relative thing - TB, liver disease, Hepatitis god knows
what else under the surface.
BTW I'm quite partial to a skinful every once in a while - I'm not
some preaching teetotaller :>)
like I say its all relative risk/benefit ratios and most of those
"ruinous" effects are generally from high dose long term systemic use.
America especially has had a long love affair with systemic steroids
thrown around with abandon as the first drug of choice for any
inflammation problem however caused - the problems start as patients
feel "fantastic" within days of starting taking steroids and feel Sh1t
when they stop - hence they demand a repeat scrip and the spiral
Nasonex is very low targeted topical dose - so those horror stories I
believe would not apply (and honest guv I ain't a Nasonex junkie I can
quit anytime - honest! sniff etc :>))
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