What are the causes of damp?
Often, if there is a damp patch visible inside the home/business, the cause can be identified from an issue on the exterior. For instance, a wet patch at the top of a wall might be due to a leaking gutter outside.
What is rising damp?
Rising damp is a commonly encountered problem in some types of building. However, it is often misdiagnosed, and as such, it is important that a trained and competent surveyor who can recognise and understand the problem, undertakes the investigation into dampness.
Most types of masonry used in the walls of a building, will allow some water movement by capillary action. However, this is usually controlled by a physical barrier or damp proof course. If the physical barrier is absent, has broken down or is damaged, it is often possible to install a remedial damp proof course (DPC) to control water rising from the ground.
Water rising from the ground often introduces contaminating salts into the walls and plaster coats. This contamination will often result in a need for the plaster to be removed. The plaster will then be replaced using specially formulated salt resistant plasters.
What is penetrating damp?
Penetrating damp may move about within the building in various ways, but is not rising damp. Penetrating damp occurs as a result of problems with a fabric of the building, which can allow water to leak into walls or floors. Typical defects leading to penetrating damp are, defective guttering or down pipes, faulty flashings, poor pointing, cracked rendering and built up external ground levels.
Penetrating damp is most common in older homes/buildings, which have solid walls. A newly built property with cavity walls offers more protection against driven rain. Penetrating damp will need to be recognised by a professional in the field, who will be able to offer expert advice and assistance.
What are the signs?
- Decaying skirting boards
- Crumbling or salt stained plaster, discolouration and staining
- Decayed timber floors
- Peeling paint and wallpaper
Can I live in my property while the work is being carried out?
How long should I wait before decorating the treated walls?
The plaster doesn’t look too bad. Why does the plaster have to be removed during damp proof-course?
What problems can damp cause to our health?
Is the work guaranteed and for how long?
What is damp proof course?
The damp proofing chemical is usually applied along the base of walls that are suffering from the effects of rising damp. Contrary to common belief, a chemical DPC does not form an impervious physical barrier.
Chemical damp proofing is an effective method of lining the pores along a stretch of masonry wall, with a silicone resin water repellent. For the purists, a pore-lining silicone rising damp treatment works by neutralising the charge attraction of the masonry pores to the water molecules.
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