How to Correctly Identify Damp in Your Property
The purchase of your first property is a huge milestone that undoubtedly warrants a celebration. Not only are you officially on the property ladder, but you now live in a house that you can truly make a home. You finally have the freedom to decorate and furnish as you please and when it comes to big decisions, it’s now your turn to call the shots. Decking out your new home is an extremely exciting venture- but what if all of this is suddenly stopped cold?
The discovery of damp can be distressing to say the least. Not only can it create unsightly stains, but damp also has the potential to affect the structural integrity of a property. If left to exacerbate, damp can have devastating effects on a building and with this in mind, it’s crucial to act fast. Once damp is stopped in its tracks, it can be fairly simple to get under control. However, the onus is on you to contact a specialist contractor once you spot some of the telltale signs.
Keeping an eye out for the visual signs of damp may seem like an easy task, but if you’ve never faced a damp problem before, it can be difficult to know what you’re looking for. Further to this, there are different types of damp that can infiltrate a property that all require different treatment. A contractor will undoubtedly be able to advise on the best course of action to fix your damp problem. However, as a homeowner, being clued up on such issues is not without its benefits. Being able to spot the telltale signs of damp will ensure that professional help can be hired as soon as possible, thereby making exacerbation less likely. With this in mind, we’ve listed the three most common types of damp that infiltrate properties as well as how to identify them.
It’s extremely important to get rising damp under control as quickly as possible as if left untreated, it can cause structural issues for a property. Rising damp occurs when water from the ground rises up through the bricks of a building. Many buildings are damp proofed to protect against rising damp, however, any properties that do not have an effective course in place could be at risk. The porous walls of a building absorb water which then rises up through the brickwork. Once the moisture reaches a certain height, gravity will cause it to travel back down through the wall again. Due to the way in which rising damp enters a property, it will only be found at ground level and will usually be visible about one metre above a skirting board.
Rising damp is relatively distinctive in how it manifests itself and with this in mind, it can be quite easy to identify. Some of the telltale signs include:
These can be found on both internal and external walls. Tide marks occur when the water from the wall evaporates, creating brown or yellow stains. The wall is also likely to look wet and could be crumbly due to the salts rising from the ground.
If an area of wallpaper is coming loose, this could be a sign of rising damp. This will usually occur above the skirting board and even the slightest curl could be cause for concern.
Damaged skirting board
If left untreated, rising damp has the potential to make wood rot, so be sure to assess the state of your skirting boards diligently. Cracks, crumbling and flaking paint are all common signs of rising damp and may require urgent attention.
This will usually grow in corners or above skirting boards and is likely to be black in colour. Although mould can be wiped down with a sponge, this will not prevent it from returning, so it’s imperative to contact a contractor to find the appropriate solution.
Here at North Yorkshire Remedials, we are constantly updating our damp proofing methods and techniques to ensure you’re getting the best service around. To find out more about our damp proofing capabilities, click here to visit our website.
This strain of damp is commonly seen in older buildings, however, it could affect any property. Penetrating damp occurs when water infiltrates a home through external walls. This will either occur due to a flaw in the structure of the building (such as a leaking pipe or missing roof tiles) or alternatively, a building’s bricks may have decayed to the point where they can no longer act as a suitable barrier. It’s extremely important to get penetrating damp under control quickly as not only does it signify an issue with structural integrity, it can also be exacerbated by extreme weather conditions. Similarly to rising damp, signs of penetrating damp can be seen on both interior and exterior walls. However, in contrast, it can occur at all levels depending on the nature of the issue. Some visible signs of penetrating damp include:
These can be seen on internal and external walls as well as ceilings. If any one these surfaces appear to be discoloured or are wet to touch, this is a telltale sign of penetrating damp.
If a particular area of a property has been significantly damaged, this is likely to cause an infiltration of moisture, creating small clusters of black mould. With this in mind, any mould that seems to be confined to a certain area could indicate a penetrating damp problem and should be assessed by a professional.
Puddles of water
As well as being extremely dangerous, this is a telltale sign that your home is not fully protected against the elements. A home with a leak requires urgent attention and a contractor should be contacted as a matter of priority.
This is probably the most common type of damp and is something that many homeowners struggle with. Condensation occurs when particularly moist air reacts with cool surfaces. This is commonly seen in small rooms that tend to heat up such as bathrooms and laundry rooms. A room that is exposed to excess moisture needs to be properly ventilated to ensure the moisture doesn’t condense. However, without sufficient airflow, the humidity can cause certain surfaces to sweat, thereby producing condensation. Although surfaces such as glass can be wiped clean to get rid of excess moisture, condensation can have a lasting effect on walls as well as window and door frames.
One of the good things about condensation is that it’s relatively easy to diagnose. Small rooms that are poorly ventilated and exposed to a lot of moisture will more than likely have streaming windows and damp walls. However, if the problem is not rectified, condensation can also result in clusters of black mould, mildew and peeling wallpaper.
North Yorkshire Remedials: a team of damp repair specialists operating in Ripon and throughout Yorkshire
Awareness of the signs and symptoms of different mould strains will ensure that you’re able to pick up on an issue before it turns into a much bigger problem. However, the importance of seeking professional help should not be underestimated. As previously mentioned, different types of mould require different treatments and with this in mind, a misdiagnosis could be problematic. A specialist contractor will be well versed on the ins and outs of mould treatment and proofing, so enlisting the help of a reputable firm is of the utmost importance.
Here at North Yorkshire Remedials, we have the expertise and experience to diagnose your damp problem before providing a suitable remedy. As well as treating the symptoms of damp, we will also implement the appropriate damp proofing measures to prevent any problems from returning in the future.
To find out more about what we do, contact us today and get your home into shipshape with North Yorkshire Remedials.