Rising damp can affect both internal and external walls. In this case, the source of the dampness comes from groundwater. The bricks and mortar in the normally dry upper parts of the wall can be affected by the capillary action of water from the ground, resulting in damp. Rising damp will often only rise to 1.0-1.5M above ground level; however, it has been known to rise higher. Well-maintained, well-constructed walls will have an efficient physical damp proof course (DPC) and are unlikely to hold damp unless the damp proof course has been compromised in some way.
Rising damp in London buildings and properties is a fairly common problem, especially in older buildings or properties with poor ventilation. Additionally, buildings situated close to rivers, therefore with an increased chance of flooding, are also at greater risk of rising damp rearing its head.
There are several different ways in which a building's DPC can be compromised, all of which can result in serious damage to the wall and, with that, the structure of the building. The most common causes of damage to a DPC include:
Should you suspect that your building’s DPC has been compromised in any way, you should seek the assistance of a damp proofing specialist as soon as possible. Repairing the DPC can be a relatively simple task if an issue is diagnosed early, requiring an injection to replace the broken-down material.
In the event of a compromised DPC, you mustn’t fix the issue yourself. Instead, you should call for the help of a professional. Any work carried out incorrectly could cause further damage to the DPC, as well as result in severe damage to the structure of the building, thus requiring expensive refurbishment.
Once the damp proofing course has been compromised, remedial action is required as soon as possible because a continued presence of dampness will lead to deterioration of the brickwork and internal plaster or decor. Over time, without treatment, this will result in the need for more invasive action to be needed, potentially requiring you to seek out alternative accommodation during expensive refurbishments.
Internal plaster in the home can break down quickly when exposed to dampness. This can look unsightly, and replacement is sometimes required for effective treatment, as well as to restore the aesthetics of the property.
To book your home survey with Garratt’s Damp & Timber today, simply get in contact with us by sending our expert team a message or call us directly at 0208 535 7536.