Damp Treatment: How to Get Rid of Damp
Damp not only looks and smells horrible, it can also cause real damage to your property; living in a damp or mouldy home can also harm your health and cause respiratory problems, says the World Health Organisation. So if you spot damp in your home, it’s important to get rid of it as soon as possible – find out how below.
What are the Causes of Damp?
Damp is caused by a few things that can all be prevented by taking the appropriate action.
Rising damp is caused by moisture coming up walls through porous material such as bricks. Over time damp will cause mould as well as causing structural damage to walls and property. Rising damp often occurs when the impervious membrane or Damp proofing Course is defective. This layer is placed 150mm above ground level to stop moisture rising.
Condensation damp is by far the most common form of damp in your home. It is caused by hot air settling on cool surfaces such as windows in cool weather. It is most common in kitchens and bathrooms and cause wet rot to start on timber fittings such as window sills and frames.
Penetrating damp is caused by water entering your home through a cracked roof tile, broken guttering or blocked pipes. It can come through deteriorating mortar between bricks. It will cause mould and structural damage as well as damage wall finishes, carpet and furniture.
How to Get Rid of Damp
Treating damp properly is an important job and first you need to make sure what sort of damp you have by having a damp survey conducted of your property.
How do I know if I have rising damp? If you think you have rising damp you need to have the entire damp proofing course checked around your property. If you find breaks in the right places then you will have found the rising damp problem areas.
How to treat rising damp? You will need to call a professional local contractor who can use a chemical damp proofing material and insert it between the walls where the damp course has failed.
Condensation damp treatment means making some modifications to your home.
How to cure damp walls in the bathroom and kitchen:
Have extraction fans installed in the rooms where you see damp collecting on walls such as the bathroom after showers and baths
Treating condensation damp around the home:
Open the windows as often as you can to air out your home and take the damp air away
Insulate walls and lofts to improve the thermal performance of your home and this will keep the air dryer
Don’t dry clothes over radiators or indoors
Install double glazing on windows as this will prevent moisture collecting on cold glass
If you use a tumble dryer in your home, have it vented outside so no moist air enters your home
Penetrating damp occurs when an exterior problem arises and it lets rain water enter your house. Get in touch with a builder or damp proofing specialist who is trained to look for this type of leak. You may find that the leak is not directly at the point of entry as the water can run along roof beams before entering the home. A qualified local roofing contractor will be able to check roof, gutters and downpipes and replace and repair if necessary.
How to Treat Damp Walls
Now that you have repaired the leak or fixed the problem you will need to treat any damaged walls and interior surfaces. Damage will be to paint finishes, plaster and will leave water marks, peeling paint and wallpaper and if bad enough rotten flooring. Clean up any mould and water marks with household products but use a mask when treating mould.
You will need to make sure that the walls and plaster ceilings and finishes are totally dry before you attempt to repaint and repair. If the areas are not dry you will have to repair again as the paint won’t adhere properly to the damp walls. If the damp was severe you might want to get a professional building survey done.