Think you have a damp problem? Which type?
Dampness is now a problem that most homes cannot escape. Often caused by double glazing that makes our homes sealed tight and taking away the natural ventilation we used to have. Dampness is not dangerous but could cause real problems to your property if left untreated! It is important to understand which dampness you have at your property so that you can take necessary steps to resolve the problem.
There are four main types of dampness that could result in your property being affected if left untreated. These are listed below to help you to identify the different types of dampness so you will know which action is best to take.
Rising damp comes from water rising up from the ground and into your home. The type of damp will only affect ground floors of properties. It normally never rises more than 24 inches from above ground level. A way to identify rising damp will be to identify a ‘tide line mark’ low on your wall. Sometimes white salts can also be seen on the effected areas as the dampness will have carried the ground salts. Rising damp will not leave any visible black mould due the salt it carries, this prevents the mould growing.
The water that causes rising damp gets around or through a broken damp proof course or passes through brickwork if the property was built without a damp proofing course, there is currently a lot of old building in the South Tyneside area without a DPC. This type of damp can be seen all year round but most commonly in winter time. To stop rising damp a damp proof course consisting of a horizontal layer of waterproof materials must be put in the walls of the building before ground level.
Penetrating dampness is only found on external walls or if there is a roof leak on ceilings. This type of damp can be seen more visually when there is a period of rainfall and can be seen as a defined ‘damp-patch’ which will look and feel damp to touch. Again there will be no black mould found with this type of dampness as usually the affected areas are too wet which prevent the black mould from being able to grow.
The cause of penetrating dampness comes from a defect outside the home such as missing pointing of the external brickwork or missing roof tiles. Once the culprit defecting the outside of the house is found it must be put right by a qualified builder such as our Pros Builders based in Newcastle, Sunderland, Durham etc to stop the problem continuing and causing further damage!
Defective plumbing will be found most commonly in the bathroom and the kitchen. This type of damp is not subject to external or internal walls but can effect both. It can be identified by an area looking and feeling damp no matter what time of year or the weather condition. The area will look and feel damp however there will be no black mould as the area is usually too wet or chemicals in the waste water will prevent mould.
Once identified a qualified plumber such as our Pro Heating Engineers should be called to find the source of the leak as left untreated this could cause extensive damage. Once the leak is sealed the problem should go away and not return unless another leak from the plumbing system becomes present.
Condensation is the most common cause of dampness! It has resulted in a lot of complaints made to the South Tyneside council for homes suffering from it. Condensation is different from the other forms of damp, it can be recognised by a patch of black mould. As condensation is caused by water vapour or moisture from inside a house coming into contact with a cold surface such as a window or wall. This moisture will soak into wallpaper, paintwork and plasterwork, the effected areas attract the black mould to grow and spread on the surface.
Condensation is commonly found in the colder months of the year, it will effect mostly rooms that are north facing and near windows. Condensation causing dampness is a more modern problem as older windows would have a natural draft that would help ventilate a room, however now UPVC windows stop all drafts. If a home is suffering from condensation there must be care taken to ensure the windows of the house are opened for at least one hour a day. Also a central heating system should be kept continuously on low instead of bursts of high heat which will increase water vapour being created.
Call Fixed Price Trade on 1300 032 178 or email [email protected] if you need a Damp Proofing Survey in the North East Inc. Newcastle, Sunderland, Durham, Middlesbrough, Stockton, Gateshead, Hartlepool, Darlington, We'll do it for you!