Damp problems can be caused by condensation, penetration of rain water, rising damp or leaking pipes. A leak can be spotted by a localised damp patch and can lead to wet rot or penetrating damp. Rising damp is normally found at the bottom of walls and is a particular problem in ground floor apartments. The most common cause of damp inside your home is condensation that can be produced during cooking, washing, bathing and even breathing. To reduce the ingress of damp into your home the most effective procedure is to install damp proofing, a generic term used to describe a number of different treatments that are applied to walls to create a protective barrier.
SOLID DAMP PROOF COURSE
A solid DPC (damp proof course) uses a waterproof material such as polythene, copper or bituminous felt. This material is fitted vertically or horizontally, inside or outside, at least 15 centimetres above ground level. This measurement is laid down in a British Standard Code of Practice. This particular type of DPC is considered to be the most effective for the prevention of the ingress of groundwater and is an excellent rising damp solution. Ideally it should be fitted on new buildings as trying to install it into walls that are already built runs the risk of damaging pipework and wiring.
This involves injecting silicone-based, liquid chemicals into 10-12cm holes that have been drilled into the wall. It’s injected using a high pressure pump and results in a water repelling layer inside the wall. It can take some time for results to be visible but is non the less popular because its installation is much less obvious. If your walls are made using breeze blocks this method is not suitable due to their non-porous nature which doesn’t allow the chemicals to permeate effectively. Any London damp specialists will be able to advise you on the most appropriate DPC to use for your situation.
POROUS TUBE DPC
Clay tubes are fitted into rows spaced closely along a wall. Any moisture is able to find a suitable outlet in order to evaporate, which in turn limits the amount of water that can rise above them. Relatively cheap and simple makes it no less effective.
ELECTRO OSMOTIC DAMP PROOF COURSE
Cathodes and anodes made from titanium are inserted into the internal walls. An electrical current powers it which is supplied by the mains. This system creates an electrical current that draws the water molecules downwards to the negative electrodes and away from the walls.
Improving your drainage will also help reduce the risk of damp appearing in your home. The more effort you put into reducing damp conditions the less likely you’re going to need to call on the services of a London damp proofing company. But if the situation does arise there are plenty of experts to choose from. Make sure you do your research carefully and ask for recommendations from family or friends and you’re sure to find the right company to work with.