Damp proofing is an essential issue for custodians and property owners to significantly maintain their structures from moisture-caused damage. The rising damp condition means that the rising water saturation from the surface of the ground can be conducted through porous building materials like bricks, mortars, and concrete. It might have a very wide spectrum of problems, including the appearance of fungi, weakening of the structural integrity, or damage to interior finishing. Damp proofing is simply the process of preventing or mitigating the effects of rising dampness through several techniques and treatments. This handbook seeks to highlight the factors that lead to rising damp/ damp proofing procedures.

Causes of Rising Damp:

Usually, dampness in buildings increases when a proper damp proofing method is not provided. It can also happen when the method which was given earlier becomes less effective with the passage of time. Common causes of rising dampness include:

  • If the DPC protection is not provided, no waterproof coating will stop moisture from being rising.
  • The damaged DPC is due to the placement of blocking materials such as debris, mortar droppings or planting against the walls of the house.
  • Distance, because water can climb over slightly raised materials with spaces or capillary networks – this phenomenon is called capillary action.
  • Choked groundwater level or non-permeable surface around structure.

Signs of Rising Damp:

Recognizing high dampness quickly and then dealing with it in time is a vital part of this destructive phenomenon. Common signs of rising dampness include:

  • Mould marks or staining, which often look like brownish/black patches, are isolated close to the base wall.
  • Paint chips or blisters and peeling wallpaper.
  • The smell of damps/ musty in affected areas.
  • Distortion of skirting boards, plaster, and other interior designs is being shot in the dark.
  • Formation of the mould and fungus growth on the surface of walls and ceiling.

Damp Proofing Methods:

These measures include mechanisms to keep the rising damp/ damp proofing at bay or ways to alleviate its effects. These include:

Damp Proof Course (DPC) Installation:

Installations of a physical shield like a DPC made of bitumen felt, plastic membrane, or chemical injection can have as a positive effect that moisture cannot pass through the walls.

Retrofitting Damp Proofing:

For the older structures not equipped with DPC or where existing barriers had lost their performance, retrofitting DPC measures might need to be considered. It employs a plastering method that releases chemical agents into the walls as well as fitting a physical DPC (Damp Proof Course).

Improving Drainage:

Infrastructure problems like French drains, guttering, landscaping and more can help with diverting the groundwater from the structure. Therefore, it eliminates the risks of the building rising damp.

Professional Assistance:

Elimination of rising damp/ damp proofing often becomes a construction professionals’ responsibility, including building surveyors, damp specialists, and contractors. These specialists can undertake a thorough survey of the building. They can determine the main reason for the dampness rise. Accordingly, they suggest specific anti-damp proofing solutions deliberately designed for the situation of the property.

Last but not least:

It is necessary to know what damp proofing is and how it will help to maintain the structure and pleasantness of the buildings. Through the identification of the causes and by employing proper damp proofing executions, homeowners and property managers will be in a position to secure their buildings. United Trade can stop every moisture problem before it occurs.