1. Look around your house – is there a defect, crack or blockage through which water could be getting in?
This could be the cause of a penetrating damp problem. Penetrating damp problems are caused by defects within the building or plumbing system where water has been able to come into the property. A water mark on an internal wall would be a sign of penetrating damp, and can give a good clue as to where the leak is getting through, so check externally in the same area as the watermark for any obvious problems.
DIY solutions –
- check the pipes, drainage and gutters for any blockages including moss, leaves, dead birds etc. Remove the blockage and you might find that the damp problem goes away easily!
- If the guttering is old, it might need to be replaced
- Ensure that any cracks in the walls or window frames are fixed
- Have a good look at the roof. Are there any loose slates? Problems with the roof are a common cause of penetrating damp problems
2. Are there any signs of damp mould on the walls? Are the walls wet to the touch?
This could be a sign of condensation damp problems. Condensation damp means that there is excessive moisture in the house. This moisture forms condensation when it meets the cold walls. When this excessive moisture cannot escape, mould often forms and a dank, musty smell is also often present.
DIY Solutions –
- Use extractor fans in the kitchen and bathrooms – rooms where there is a lot of steam
- When using the kitchen or bathroom keep the doors shut and extractor fan on so that excessive moisture does not go into other parts of the house
- A climate control humidifier might help
- Ensure washing machines and dryers are adequately plumbed in according to the manufacturers instructions. Incorrect installation can lead to steam escaping
3. Look at the interior walls. Is there a water mark on the walls on the ground floor, with a damp patch that rises no more than one metre up the wall?
Try digging away the soil that butts against the exterior walls. You might find that this is enough to remove the problem completely. If your building is old, and you think it might not have a damp proof course, then our recommended solution would be to install Newton Damp Proof Membranes, as they can be 100% effective without the need to install a damp proof course. The installation of damp proofing membranes negates the need for a damp proof course, and is a simpler method of damp proofing.
4. Is the property affected by damp in an exposed area, or is it older than a hundred years old?
Houses by the sea often suffer from penetrating damp problems due to the driving rain hitting the external walls. If the property older than a hundred years old, it might not have a damp proof course, or the damp proof course could be damaged. The recommended solution would be to install Newton Damp Proof Membranes – which negates the need to install a damp proof course.
5. Find a good damp specialist
If the DIY tricks outlined above do not work to remove the damp problem, it is always best to consult a good, trustworthy damp proofing specialist. Ring Newtons on 01732 360 095 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org and we will be happy to give you a list of damp proof specialists who cover your area free of charge. Newtons Registered Installers are trained to offer you the best level of service and expertise, and always offer a reliable solution for your damp problem.