How to treat a damp prob­lem

Lesotho Times - - Property -

DAMP typ­i­cally oc­curs on walls, floors, doors and win­dows, and also within pipes, plumb­ing, ceil­ings and roofs.

It is caused by mois­ture com­ing in to the prop­erty from out­side, from con­den­sa­tion within the house or from wa­ter be­ing ex­ten­sively used within spe­cific ar­eas such as bath­rooms.

If an area is not well-ven­ti­lated, this will ex­ac­er­bate the damp prob­lem in the home as well.

Damp can cause se­condary dam­age to prop­erty, which can lead to paint and wall­pa­per peel­ing, as well as loose plas­ter.

Mor­tar is li­able to crum­ble as a re­sult of damp, while steel and iron fas­ten­ers can rust.

How can i tell if i have ad amp prob­lem? Once damp has be­come a prob­lem in your home, you may be­gin to no­tice the fol­low­ing phys­i­cal de­fects.

1. Mould and wet stains on skirt­ing boards 2. De­cayed or rot­ting tim­ber 3. Crum­bling plas­ter 4. Peel­ing, bub­bling or flak­ing paint

5. Dis­coloura­tion, mould growth and stain­ing on walls

6. Salt stains and salt de­posit build-up

Is damp a risk to my health? Damp is of­ten the per­fect breed- ing ground for a va­ri­ety of moulds and fungi. Spores, air­borne mould con­cen­tra­tions and bacteria can be in­haled by hu­mans, which can cause se­ri­ous res­pi­ra­tory ill­nesses and other health prob­lems.

What is ris­ing damp? Ris­ing damp is the slow, up­ward spread of mois­ture within the lower sec­tions of walls and other ground sup­ported struc­tures, and can be iden­ti­fied by a char­ac­ter­is­tic ‘tide mark’ along the lower por­tions of the wall, as well as crum­bling plas­ter and peel­ing or blis­ter­ing paint.

What is lat­eral or pen­e­trat­ing damp? Lat­eral or pen­e­trat­ing damp is caused by wa­ter leak­ing through your walls, and is of­ten the re­sult of struc­tural prob­lems such as faulty guttering, roof­ing, flash­ing and cracks in the walls.

Ris­ing damp may cause damp proof­ing prob­lems on in­side walls, which will likely in­clude… 1. Paint not ad­her­ing to the wall 2. Wall pa­per lifts and stains ap­pear on the walls

3. Plas­ter flakes away, feels soft, spongy and bub­bles, and white pow­der or crys­tals ap­pear

4. Skirt­ing boards and floor boards rot.

Damp proof­ing prob­lems on out­side walls in­clude…

1. Mor­tar fret­ting and fall­ing out be­tween bricks and stonework

2. Stains or white pow­der ap­pears on the walls How can damp be pre­vented?

Reg­u­lar main­te­nance and good ven­ti­la­tion are both key to pre­vent­ing damp in your home.

Be sure to check your roof reg­u­larly for holes in roof sheet­ing or miss­ing tiles.

Also clean gut­ters and check for struc­tural dam­age such as cracks reg­u­larly. Keep win­dows open as much as pos­si­ble or check that ven­ti­la­tion and air-con­di­tion­ing sys­tems are work­ing as they should.

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