Rising damp is the common term for the slow upward movement of water in the lower sections of walls and other ground-supported structures. There are many signs that would indicate you have rising damp problems within your property. These include tide marks on your interior or exterior walls, salts coming through your plasterwork or brickwork, wallpaper coming away from your interior walls and even a change in the overall air quality (usually noticed by people not living in the property).
Rising damp occurs when your damp proof course (DPC) breaks down and allows water/water vapour from the ground to rise into the brickwork and then into the internal plaster thus contaminating it. The water/water vapour that causes the problem contains hygroscopic salts (nitrates and chlorides). They absorb moisture from the atmosphere which in turn increases the amount of water in the wall and the speed in which the damp will rise up the wall. Although rising damp of up to 5 meters in height has been observed, the height of the damp rise is typically much lower and is rarely above 1.5m.
Rising damp has been proven to have a negative effect on the human body especially those listed below:-
• Babies and young children.
• The elderly.
• Those who suffer from skin conditions such as eczema.
• Those who suffer with breathing problems such as asthma.
• Those with a weak immune system.
Penetrating damp can be caused by many factors, but the most common issue is the ground level of your property being lower than that of neighbouring properties or the outside ground levels Other causes include porous bricks, spalled brickwork and degrading mortar joints.
Another reason penetrating damp exists is building defects including poorly fitted windows, defective guttering and down pipes. It can occur at all levels of a building but is more prevalent higher up. It is possible for damp to move within walls, but this horizontal movement differs from the vertical movement of rising damp.
When penetrating damp has appeared internally due to a difference in ground levels, we would treat the walls with a process called tanking. Tanking is applied internally and is part of rising damp treatment. Tanking is a material that will be applied directly to the internal brickwork and acts as a barrier between the damp wall and the new plaster therefore keeping the dry.
We include a 30-year guarantee on all our damp proofing work, however if we were to seize trading during this period our sovereign guarantee would still pick up any claims.