Welcome to the topic “The Ultimate guide to damp in Residential properties.”
What is damp proofing?
Damp proofing is a process to prevent moisture build-up caused by water seeping into walls from the ground floor surface. You can find damp and condensation inside the walls, floors, or ceilings.
Protecting your residential home from these damages is essential, and damp proofing your home is the best way to prevent the damp problems. Properties that are not resistant to moisture and dampness could run into more trouble with time. And if you leave the problem untreated, the damp repairs can be quite expensive. With an affected wall, you will have to treat and re-plaster the wall back to new.
Following are some major reasons why damp proofing for residential properties is essential and how you can resolve damp issues and keep your home dry.
Causes of Dampness:
Damp in residential properties are common, and there are many reasons for that; some of them are mentioned below.
Rising damp from the ground
If the surface or land on which the property is constructed includes too much soil and allows groundwater to pass, it will result in rising damp. Usually, the material used in the foundations soaks moisture because of capillary action. Hence the rising damp coming from the floor through the structure.
Due to rain
If your home walls are prone to rain or not well protected, this can result in dampness in your property. At the same time, the leaking root also allows water to penetrate into a structure.
In simple words, condensation occurs when warm air gets condensed on the cool surface such as windows, ceiling, etc. This is the primary cause of damp in kitchens.
Some other causes of dampness are:
- If your property is located on soil that you cannot drain off easily, the damp will penetrate the property.
- The location of your home also plays a vital role; the wall attaining less sunlight and rain are prone to dampness.
- The newly built walls remain damp for a short period.
- A flat slope on a roof can lead to the penetration of water and causes dampness on a roof.
- The dampness problem also occurs in poor workmanship in structure.
Effect of dampness
The raw material such as bricks, concrete, etc., also includes moisture, which normally is not unsafe up to a certain level and optimum condition. However, if the moisture level rises above a certain level from where you can see it on your property, then it can cause a real problem.
Damp can severely affect the structure if left untreated. Some of the major effects of dampness in residential properties are as follow.
- A damp place can be a breeding ground for microbes and bugs.
- Damp can cause rust and corrosion to the metals used in the construction of the building.
- Dry rot in damp can cause decay of timber rapidly.
- It can damage your floor covering.
- The plaster on the wall becomes soft and crumble due to dampness.
- Damp also affects paintwork, wallpaper, and other wall decoration accessories.
- When moisture penetrates into the flooring, it can get loose.
Methods of damp proofing
Now that you know why damp proofing is necessary, let’s check out some reliable damp proofing:
Membrane Damp Proofing
This process includes a membrane usually made of polythene material. The membrane is applied between the actual source of damp and the structure next to it. Apart from Polythene, some other membrane materials are bituminous felts, silicon, epoxy, mastic asphalt, polymers, or plastic. This mainly depends on the damp’s severity and the source.
The most common treatment for damp in a residential property is a Damp Proof Course (DPC). The method is effective, but there are some guidelines that one should observe while laying DPC:
Ensure that DPC should cover the full thickness of the wall.
The mortar on which you want to apply DPC should be level. This is because the uneven base can damage the DPC.
New DPC should be applied in correct relation to the existing or old DPC to ensure an effective barrier that prevents water from seeping into the structure from the ground, walls, or ceilings.
Integral Damp Proofing
The integral damp proofing process includes adding water-proofing material with the concrete to enhance its waterproofness. These compounds come in powdered and liquid form. The combinations are used to fill the gaps in concrete and make it resilient to moisture and water.
Surface Damp Treatment
The damp and moisture can also enter when there are gaps in the finishing, so you must fill these openings and holes to prevent moisture. In this process, water repellent soaps are used, such as calcium, aluminum, and stearates. All these are quite effective and offer reliable protection from various elements.
This method includes the implementation of a layer of rich cement mortar on the surface that makes that surface waterproof. The method is implemented by using a machine called a cement gun. The cement gun forces the mixture to the surface using compressed air. Usually, 1:3 cement mortar is applied to the affected surface to prevent moisture and dampness.
The Guniting is one of the most effective methods of fixing damaged concrete work caused due to inferior construction or any other reasons.
Cavity Wall Construction
In this process, your property’s main wall is shielded by an outer wall with a cavity between both walls. The cavity then prevents the damp and moisture from coming into the main wall from the outer wall.
Damp proofing for residential properties is necessary, and we will advise you to use the services of experts and certified damp proofing professionals to conduct the process. If treated timely and adequately, the damp and condensation can be solved without spending too much money, or else it can be a hefty repair. For a free damp survey contact our team now.
Also Read: How to fix damp in your house