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What is Rising Damp?

Often, rising damp causes a lot of damage to your property. The damp will often make the plaster fall off of the wall and cause mould to form on the surface of the wall. The damp will also make your walls sag and cause moisture to penetrate the building.

Moisture from the ground

Identifying the cause of rising damp is important in managing the problem. Often, the problem can be traced to changes in the external drainage, plumbing or the structure of the wall if you landlord does nor repair damp issue in your home you may be able for housing disrepair claims.

There are also some other less obvious causes of rising damp. Typically, moisture is drawn from the ground into capillaries that are present in porous materials such as bricks. These capillaries may vary in size and thickness. The diameter of a capillary determines how quickly water can move through it.

A similar phenomenon is seen with the rise of moisture through capillaries in permeable materials such as plaster. The result is a visible stain. The stain may be caused by deposition of salts.

Fortunately, there are ways to identify and prevent the problem. The most effective solution involves repairing the contributing defects.

Penetrating damp

Typically, penetrating damp is caused by a problem in the fabric of a structure. It may occur in any part of the building, including the basement or the roof. It can be very damaging to the property and will cause the occupants to suffer from respiratory problems.

If you have penetrating damp, it is a good idea to fix the source of the moisture as soon as possible. However, before you start fixing it, you need to identify the problem. There are a number of different causes of penetrating damp, and it is important to know what the problem is.

The most common cause is a damaged guttering system. If the gutters are damaged, water can leak into the house. If the water does not drain away, it can continue to soak into the brickwork. It can also be a symptom of a cracked or broken render. You can fix this by replacing the render with new material or applying a sealant.

Plaster falling off the wall

Despite being an extremely durable material, plaster can be prone to damage when rising damp is present. If this is the case, the wall may start to bubble, delaminate, or even crumble. In some cases, the deteriorated plaster may need to be removed. Fortunately, there are several treatment options available.

One of the quickest ways to treat rising damp on internal walls is to install a damp proof membrane. A damp proof membrane works by injecting chemicals into the masonry substrate. The chemicals form a water-repellant barrier that keeps moisture from the walls.

A more elaborate approach to treating rising damp involves installing a physical damp proof course, or DPC. This requires the removal of each brick along the failed mortar course. In addition, a trench must be dug around the affected wall. The soil is then filled with single sized aggregate.

Mould on wall surfaces

Seeing mould on wall surfaces can be a sign of a bigger home problem. A damp wall can lead to the growth of black mould. Depending on the type of mould, it can be toxic. If you live in a damp environment, you may notice rashes and other skin lesions.

You can clean the mould on your wall with a fungicidal wash. Using a commercial cleaner is also a good option, but be sure to follow the directions on the package.

Generally, you can find mould on walls in kitchens and bathrooms. Keeping furniture away from the walls and promoting cross ventilation can help prevent the growth of mold.

You can remove black mould by cleaning with a commercial cleaner. Commercial cleaners often contain bleach. But be careful with the fumes. The solution should soak into the mould for a few minutes. Then, you can scrub the mould off the surface with a scrub brush.

Signs of rising damp

Whether you are living in a modern building or a century old house, rising damp can cause serious structural damage. As such, you should have an idea of the signs of rising damp so you can protect your home. The sooner you act, the less damage you may have to deal with later.

The first and most obvious sign of rising damp is moisture at the base of your wall. This is because water from the ground rises through the walls in a capillary action. It can also be caused by steam from cooking and damp clothes.

Another indicator of rising damp is the peeling of wallpaper. This can be especially noticeable around the skirting board. It can be a red flag for a potential damp problem, but it can be tricky to determine. If you aren’t sure, it might be worth having a professional inspect the area.

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