Structural Damp

What is Structural Damp?

Structural damp is the result of excessive moisture being present in a building. The ingress of excessive moisture can be caused by various factors.

The problem of ‘Rising damp’ has been known about as far back as Roman times. In the Victorian times this issue was addressed through the Public Health Act of 1875. This required the introduction of a non-permeable layer otherwise known as a damp proof course (DPC) approx. 150mm above ground level. The purpose of a DPC is to prevent the upward migration of ground water and moisture into the superstructure of a building through the foundations by capillary action.

The problem of ‘Penetrating damp’ occurs when the outer protective envelope of a building is breached. This damp can penetrate through defective masonry, roofs or around window and door openings.

Evidence of Structural Damp

Rising damp can be seen at ground floor level in a building. This is due to the DPC either failing or being bridged in some way. Often signs of decay are visible on the timber skirting board along with peeling paint or the wallpaper above. These signs can be accompanied by a salt deposit on the surface of the wall. This is caused by the natural ground salts which have travelled upwards and are finally left behind when the damp evaporates off the wall surface.

Penetrating damp can be seen at higher levels within a property for example on ceilings and walls. Staining, cracked plaster and peeling paint can be visible signs of this. This type of damp can be due to cracks or gaps in the external masonry, faulty or blocked rainwater goods which then allows the ingress of water. This type of damp is not to be confused with damp and black mould caused by excessive condensation in moisture laden rooms like bathrooms and kitchens.

Damage to internal wall caused by rising damp.

Damage to internal wall caused by rising damp.

Visible evidence of penetrating damp on internal ceiling and wall.

Visible evidence of penetrating damp on internal ceiling and wall.

How Structural Damp should be treated

Structural damp can only be stopped when the source of the water ingress or damp is identified and resolved. This could involve for example the reinstatement of a DPC through injection methods. Repairing defective masonry, rainwater goods or roof repairs.

To ensure the correct solution is found for your property Premier Preservation Scotland Ltd will carry out an extensive survey to identify all affected areas, then advise on the best course along with all remedial works.

As an approved Sovereign contractor, we can advise on the correct solution along with any necessary remedial works. These will be carefully carried out by our experienced technicians and reinstatement team.

All works undertaken by Premier Preservation Scotland Ltd are covered by an insurance backed 10-year guarantee, giving you additional peace of mind.

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