Damp Proofing

Damp proofing

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What is damp proofing?

Our damp proofing guide will provide all you need to know about damp problems and how to solve them.  The four main causes of damp are Rising damp, penetrating dampcondensation, and underground water ingress, and we will outline how to fix them all.

If you require professional treatment, then our damp proofing specialists have been solving damp problems since 1951. Our experienced surveyors are fully trained and qualified to diagnose the exact cause of the problem and, if necessary, provide a treatment plan to remedy it.

Following current Government guidance Peter Cox can still perform damp proofing services in homes and commercial premises while taking all necessary precautions with regards to social distancing and use of protective equipment. To find out how we can help you today while remaining safe, please get in touch with us by calling 0800 633 5712 or complete the contact form below to book a survey. Alternatively continue reading to find out more about the various damp proofing services we can provide.

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Signs of damp

If you spot peeling wallpaper, tide marks on your wall, bubbling plaster or paint, black mould or discoloured patches on your walls or ceiling then the chances are your property needs some kind of damp proofing.

A wide-array of structural and plumbing problems can cause the symptoms listed above and a professional damp surveyor will be able to identify the source of the damp and recommend the appropriate solution. The links below will take you to pages where you can get more information on the signs of damp and the variety of damp problems.

Damp proofing walls

Most people start to think about damp proofing when symptoms of damp start to appear on their internal walls. Damp on walls causes aesthetic damage to paint, plaster, wallpaper, skirting boards and other fixtures and fittings but it can also lead to more serious problems such as rot which can affect structural timbers.
 
Other problems associated with damp walls include exacerbated symptoms of asthma and other respiratory conditions and poor energy efficiency with higher bills as a result. If you notice damp walls in your property then we recommend acting fast to resolve the issue. Generally speaking, the sooner a damp wall is repaired the less deteriation it will suffer.

The excess moisture that causes damp walls can come from various, such as:

  • Humidity caused by poor ventilation
  • Faulty roofing, gutters and down pipes
  • Bridged or damaged damp proof courses
  • Damage to foundations from tree roots or invasive weeds
  • Damp cavity wall insulation

Types of damp and damp treatments

Identifying the exact type of damp proofing you require can sometimes be difficult for those who are not professionally trained. Symptoms of conditions like penetrating damp, rising damp and condensation can look remarkably similar but all require different damp proofing techniques to solve.

That said, when most people talk about “damp proofing” they are usually referring to a remedial damp proof course.  This is a type of waterproofing where a barrier is placed in a wall to prevent rising damp. There are many other types of damp proofing treatments available though, and each is suitable for different types of damp. 

Many homeowners will have heard of a damp-proof course, waterproof membranes or positive input ventilation unit but far fewer would know when to apply them.

What is a damp proof course?

A damp-proof course (DPC) is a damp proofing treatment used to treat rising damp. Damp-proof courses can be repaired or installed with a few different methods but the most popular and well known is the damp proof injection.
 
A damp-proof course is only effective against rising damp and will not help other damp problems such as condensation or penetrating damp, so we would always recommend contacting an accredited surveyor to develop a treatment plan before getting a damp-proof course installed. It should be noted that rising damp is regularly misdiagnosed by untrained tradespeople, so by discussing the problem with a qualified and trade body recognised company like Peter Cox you could potentially save yourself from any needless and ineffective treatment.

What is a damp proof membrane?

A damp proof membrane is a high density polyethylene which is impermeable to water ingress and the any contaminants associated with this problem. This makes damp proof membrane an ideal material in the treatment of damp problems such as penetrating damp and rising damp.

The membrane is secured to internal walls after the source of the water ingress has been repaired and its bumpy surface creates a cavity that allows moisture to evaporate from the wall behind. These membranes are also used in structural waterproofing projects in basements and cellars as part of a cavity drainage system.

How to stop condensation

If your property is damp because of condensation you are likely to see excess water on your windows and black mould on your walls and window frames. This condition is common in humid rooms such as the bathroom and kitchen where water vapour (steam) particularly prevalent.

Stopping condensation can be as simple as opening windows, keeping lids on boiling pots or shutting the door when having a bath or shower. That said, persistent condensation problems that cannot be shifted through lifestyle changes can be solved professionally with the installation of mechanical ventilation units - these can range from basic extractor fans through to positive input ventilation systems.

How to treat a damp basement or cellar

When it comes to damp proofing an underground space it is common to see the process referred to as waterproofing as opposed to damp proofing. This is because basement waterproofing systems are often very different from the systems used to treat damp problems above the ground.

Concrete tanking systems and waterproof membrane and drainage systems are common solutions for keeping a basement or cellar dry and these work by holding back or managing water ingress from earth retaining walls.

Do I need professional damp proofing?

Put simply, if damp problems are left to develop and worsen they can cause serious damage to your property. For this reason, we would always recommend that any damp proofing contractor you use is experienced and qualified for the job.

As the market leaders in property preservation, our damp proofing specialists provide all the assurances and security you require to know that your property is in safe hands with us. When you choose Peter Cox to work on your property you will benefit from:

  • Our 68 years of experience providing damp proofing solutions in all types of properties
  • Treatments backed by meaningful long term guarantees that others cannot match
  • The peace of mind that comes from knowing our services have been approved by an extensive list of trade bodies such as the PCA and Which? amongst others.
  • Fully qualified surveyors and technicians that have comprehensive local knowledge and understanding of different building types in the area.

Damp treatment process

From the initial damp survey to completion of any damp treatment, our qualified surveyors and highly trained technicians will offer the following:

  • Identification of the damp issue
  • Determining and treating the source of the damp
  • Full consultancy resulting in a bespoke treatment plan that takes into account your property's needs and your budget
  • Carry out any necessary internal and external repairs
  • Removal and replacement of any damaged plaster and timber
  • Help and advice for safeguarding and maintaining your property in future
  • Leave you property in a clean, safe and habitable state at the end of our treatment

Our team will also keep you up to date throughout the damp treatment process, ensuring that you know how the job is progressing and what is being done to help your property. To find out more about different damp treatment methods to solve damp patches on walls caused by  rising damp, penetrating damp and condensation take a look at the links below:

Are our damp treatments guaranteed?

Every damp proofing treatment we undertake carries a Peter Cox 20 year property repair guarantee as standard. This means that you can rest assured that in the unlikely event of there being a problem with our treatment and you begin to see a recurrence of damp patches on your walls, then our damp proofing experts will be there to put it right at no additional cost.

Moreover, we also offer unique rising damp insurance for the whole house giving you complete confidence in the health of your property going forward.

What our customers say about damp proofing

It is clear to see that our customers are extremely happy with our damp proofing services. Take a look below to see what they have been saying about us on Trustpilot - one of the most trusted and respected review platforms in Britain.

Professional damp proofing

Damp problems vary in severity and it is often the case that our qualified damp proofing surveyors can simply offer some advice and guidance that will allow you to combat the problem yourself without any additional treatment necessary. On the other hand, damp can also create a variety of problems like staining and plaster damage and potentially develop into serious property problems like wood rot.

Contacting our damp proofing specialists means that you will understand the nature and severity of the problem, and if treatment is required then we can get started restoring your home back to its best. Give us a call on 0800 633 5712 to find out how we can help, or book a damp proofing survey today by clicking the button below.

Author: Richard Walker AIWSc CSRT CSSW

Richard is our National Technical and Development Manager and widely recongised as one of the nation's foremost experts in the field of damp proofing and diagnosis of damp and decay within properties. Richard frequently provides his damp proofing and property preservation insight for industry and trade journals and his CPD seminars are in high demand from property professionals across the country.

For more on Richard's qualifications in the damp industry you can see his profile page or connect with him on LinkedIn.

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