Normal air humidity is 65-70% and depends on the climatic zone and weather conditions. But indoors, this figure varies. Humidity in the vegetable warehouse can reach 80-95%. What is the reason for its growth?
- “Breathing” of agricultural products: during storage, grains and vegetables emit heat, water and carbon dioxide.
- Incorrectly selected method of storing root crops.
- Poor ventilation.
The high relative humidity of the air leads to the formation of condensation on the walls due to the diurnal temperature difference. First of all, water vapor settles on metal structures, for example, corrugated board. A drainage system must be provided to divert water droplets, otherwise moisture accumulates on the floor.
The consequences of dampness on a vegetable base
In itself, high humidity in the vegetable warehouse is not a problem. On the contrary, according to the established norms, for the storage of potatoes and root crops, its indicator should be at least 90%, for onions – at least 75-80%. If the humidity in the storage falls below this limit, agricultural products will begin to flake and dry out, and their taste characteristics will deteriorate (become “rubber”).
But high humidity in the vegetable warehouse inevitably leads to the formation of condensate and the accumulation of water. And this is what causes it:
- Corrosion of load-bearing structures: they lose their strength, the storage room often requires repair and quickly becomes unusable.
- The appearance of rot and mold: the fungus destroys the crop, which leads to significant financial losses.
- Damage to wiring and violation of fire safety rules.
Therefore, when designing a vegetable warehouse, there is a difficult task: to prevent the formation of condensate without reducing the relative humidity of the air. And the only solution is to maintain air circulation. Due to the forced movement of air masses, the water settling on the walls will evaporate, without creating conditions for corrosion or mold development.
Damp control: cheap and effective
General recommendations for dealing with dampness in a vegetable warehouse are as follows:
- Installation of a mechanical ventilation system: it will not allow air to stagnate.
- Refusal to store products in bulk: with this method, it is difficult to achieve good ventilation of root crops. It is best to use ventilated containers, such as plastic or wooden boxes.
- Organization of free air access to the most problematic areas: metal supports.
To reduce the cost of installing a ventilation system and its maintenance, you can replace electrical equipment with air solar collectors. They work on the principle of fan heaters, but they use the energy of the sun to circulate the air and do not require an electrical connection. This method has proved its effectiveness and is successfully used in the countries of America and Europe to reduce the costs of farms.
So that increased dampness at the vegetable base does not bring problems, it is enough to properly organize the storage of agricultural products and establish good ventilation. A constant stream of fresh air will get rid of condensation, prevent mold and pests from appearing. Your harvest will be completely safe.
And to save resources, it is recommended to replace electric fan heaters with solar collectors: thanks to their power, they will maintain constant air circulation without consuming expensive energy resources. The cost of maintaining the warehouse will not increase, and the humidity in the vegetable warehouse will be within the normal range.