How Do I know If I have Damp?
Condensation is by the far the easiest type of damp to spot. You will usually notice droplets of water on paintwork and when you have had your windows closed they will be misty and wet to the touch. Contacting a condensation specialist is essential, they will be able to determine if the condensation is the result of any other damp issues along with giving you advice on how to ventilate your property. They can install a number of vent-based solutions.
Other types of damp can produce a consistent musty smell, blistering or peeling of paint/wallpaper. You might also become aware that your skirting boards look damaged and a tidemark rising to around a meter above the skirting. There is always the dreaded and dangerous black mould that will indicate you have a serious damp problem.
If you become aware of any of the above signs you should contact DH Damp Proofing & Timber as soon as possible, we will then conduct a professional damp survey and provide a report detailing the treatment that will need to be carried out.
What Is Damp Proofing:
Damp proofing is the installation of any materials within your properties structure to keep moisture out. It is not the same as simply waterproofing.
Damp proofing is installed using a membrane that is damp proof and prevents moisture from spreading in a capillary action.
Cavity walls are another effective way of preventing damp because the cavity helps prevent condensation whilst becoming a barrier for rainwater and preventing it from entering the property.
Why Is Damp Proofing Important?
Damp Proofing is important because it protects the structural integrity of your property. Not only this but it also protects yours and your family’s health, black mould caused by damp problems is damaging to lungs and increases your likelihood of catching colds and flu.
Damp can damage the masonry, timber and mortar within your property making it a serious problem that needs expert assistance. The appearance of your property is also at risk especially the internal signs.
Will My Property Already Have A Damp Course?
Following 1870 the majority of properties in London where constructed to include damp proofing with the Victorian and Edwardian eras using layers of slate. The Georgian era onwards seen significant growth and many properties were built, the damp proofing in these tended to be a less durable bitumen impregnated hessian.
All of the above damp proofing solutions where completely adequate at the time they where used, however over time all of them can deteriorate. Cavity walls need to be cleared as they fill up with debris, slate can crack due to the clay that lays under London and bitumen decays.
If your property was built prior to the late 20th century it may well be the case that your damp proofing is in need of an upgrade.
What Is Tanking In Basements & Cellars and What Are The Advantages?
Across London there are many basements and cellars falling victim to constant water penetration. People are now starting to utilize basements and cellars as a cosy living space, tanking is essential when doing this to ensure the area is free of damp. Even if you do not wish to occupy your basement/cellar then tanking is still a great option it can increase the market value of your property should you come to sell it.
Tanking refers to the practice of damp proofing your basement and/or cellar. It can be done in a couple of ways; firstly the walls will be coated with a sealant, membrane or cementitious coating. This option completely protects against moisture however this solution is not always suitable. The next option is a cavity drainage system, which is a great solution; this utilises the air space between the walls allowing the inner wall to dry out.
How Do I Rid My Home Of The Smell of Damp?
It is important to understand that it is not just a case of using deodourizers to mask the musty damp smell. You should work to identify the cause of damp, look for any leaks, moisture caused by blocked gutters and think if there could be penetrative damp caused by heavy rainfall.
Condensation is an extremely common cause of damp and musty smells. Think about how to ventilate areas better especially those where you cook and shower. Condensation is at its worst during the coldest months of the year and is very common across London.
You should contact a damp proofing company to conduct a survey and to diagnose the exact type of damp and its cause.
How Much Will it Cost To Fix A Damp Problem?
The cost of treating a damp problem varies from property to property depending on the root cause of the problem and the treatment required to fix it.
You will need to have a professional damp survey carried out; you will then be issued a report and a quote for any works needed.
DH Damp Proofing & Timber will always offer the most effective treatment at the most cost effective price with all works guaranteed and completed professionally and competently.
Will Sound Plaster Need To Be Removed To Treat My Damp Problem?
This can be a difficult one, it is easy to detect visibly affected plaster and very difficult to know whether surrounding apparently sound plaster has been affected. Best practice when treating damp is to remove as little plaster as possible, but due to the salt attracting moisture that can be still present in seemingly un-damaged plaster it can be dangerous if it is left there.
The only way to be sure whether seemingly un-damaged plaster is holding moisture attracting salts is to call in plaster experts, we use a Certified Surveyor In Remedial Treatments (CSRT). If preserving the plaster currently in place is of upmost importance we will work with you to help you plan the way forward.
We are experts in providing specialist plastering and will apply this after your damp problem has been diagnosed and treated.
If you have a suspected damp problem of any kind in London, Contact our experts at DH Damp Proofing & Timber today. Call now