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What Happens If You Leave Rising Damp?

If you live in a house with rising damp, likely, it has not been maintained properly for several years. Rising damp is a severe problem that requires immediate action to prevent further damages. If it’s left untreated, the building will continue to deteriorate, eventually collapsing.

If left untreated, rising damp causes cracks in plaster walls, which may result in staining, discoloration, property damage, unsightly marks on walls and furniture, or even rot on wooden surfaces inside a building. Given enough time rising damp may cause structural issues and even cause the building to collapse.

This blog post will discuss how to spot rising damp and ways to prevent it occurring so that it doesn’t become a problem for you.

What Is Rising Damp, And How Does It Happen?

Rising damp is a phenomenon where water seeps up the walls of your building, often through cracks in masonry, up into internal structures such as floors or ceilings. It may also result in the rotting and rusting of wooden beams and joists, which will eventually cause the building to collapse.

That happens because concrete is porous; Water will naturally rise towards the surface.  Rising dampness is not just a problem that affects houses; it can also affect other structures such as roads and bridges.

How Do You Know If You Have Rising Damp?

The first thing you need to diagnose is where the dampness starts. If it’s at ground level, then there may be a crack in the foundation. If the problem starts higher up, there may be a crack in your masonry or concrete above ground level.

  • Take note of rings on the wall or furniture that won’t go away.
  • Puddles of water forming in the basement or other areas where they shouldn’t.
  • Also, check out cracks and gaps in the walls, floors, or ceilings.
  • Keep track of any changes to the building structure, such as cracking or shifting walls.
  • Also, watch out for rotting beams and deterioration to the building.
  • Another sign to watch out for is potential mold growth. If you notice any of these signs, this is a clear sign that there may be rising damp in your building, and you need to address the issue immediately.

If you find any of these signs, it is vital to immediately call an inspector. An inspector will be able to tell whether you have rising damp and how serious the problem is. They will also give you a rough estimate of both whether they can fix it or not and the potential cost. You don’t want to ignore rising damp because this can lead to severe problems in the future.

How Can You Fix Rising Damp In Your Home?

Hiring A Professional

This is the best way to prevent and treat this problem, as they can provide you with all the necessary chemicals needed to solve it. With rising damp being such a serious problem hiring professional help gives piece of mind, and confidence that the job is being handled well.

Cleaning Up Any Standing Water

Clean your gutters so that they drain correctly and get rid of any puddles around the building. If the problem is getting worse, you should consult with your local humidity expert to find the best solution for your specific situation.

Courses Of Cementitious Render Applied to Walls

It is a coating that can be applied to porous walls to make them less absorbent. It acts as a barrier between the ground and foundation structure. This helps to keep water out, and decreases the chances of rising damp

Plastic Sheeting

This will cover the walls and floor of a basement or crawlspace. It will keep any moisture from seeping into the walls, which can prevent rising damp.

Waterproof Membrane

You can apply this to the wall to make it less porous. Fill in the gaps along the house’s exterior with a concrete sealant to make sure that moisture cannot seep up through them. It will also prevent any water damage on walls, such as rusting or peeling paint.

It is possible to install a waterproof barrier under a concrete floor to prevent moisture from seeping up through it. It is mainly used for existing buildings that have a problem with rising damp. They also prevent any further damage from occurring in your home or business.

Correct Installation of a Damp Course

It is a layer of impermeable material that prevents any moisture from seeping up through the walls. Types of materials include:

Stainless-steel Mesh

Metal mesh is installed into the walls to prevent any moisture from seeping up through them. It will also ensure that the high-tensile concrete behind the wall stays in place.

Felt Damp Course

It is a layer of impermeable material that is installed between the wall and the brickwork. It will prevent moisture from seeping up through it.

Drill Holes In Each Brick

Fill the newly drilled cavities with a silicon-based waterproofing mixture. Then, cover them with a cementitious membrane such as Drizoro Maxseal Foundation to ensure that no area is left uncovered against outside elements or toxic chemicals seeping through ground-level surfaces.

Drainage Installation

It is one of the best ways to prevent moisture from seeping in and causing any problems. A drainage system helps redirect water away from your walls and foundation so that it doesn’t reach the structure of your home

Removing Excess Moisture From The Ground Below

Use a soil drying machine to remove water from the ground. It will reduce the risk of rising damp that has already occurred in your home or business.

How Long Does It Take For Rising Damp To Dry Out?

It is usually possible to fix the problem of rising damp within a few days or weeks. It depends on the severity of the problem, so check with your inspector to determine how long it will take.

Can Rising Damp Make You Ill?

Many people are at risk of respiratory problems due to damp and mold. The effects of these contaminants on the immune system make you more susceptible to allergies or asthma. Children, the elderly, and individuals with weakened immune systems are more likely to develop respiratory problems.

How Do You Know If It Is Just Damp Or Rising Damp?

Damp in a building is the presence of moisture that causes a cold, clammy feeling. Rising damp occurs when water from the ground rises in buildings. It is an old problem that has been around for many years, but it is treatable.

How Long Do I Need To Wait To Redecorate After Damp Proofing?

In most cases, it is best to wait about 4-6 weeks before redecorating. It is also a good idea to check with your inspector to ensure that it fully gone before doing so. Typically, you don’t want to start any building work until the rising damp has completely dried. This can be problematic because it potentially could take several months for rising damp to dry out.

How Long Does Rising Damp Take To Go Away?

Rising damp takes about 6-12 months to disappear entirely and the building to completely dry out. It can vary depending on the situation and how severe it is, but this is the average time to disappear.

What Are Some Natural Remedies For Rising Damp?

The use of dehumidifiers or open-window ventilation

Open up all of your windows to allow for better airflow. It will help the building dry out faster, increase ventilation, prevent mold growth, and keep people healthy and safe. Make sure to keep your windows open for at least an hour a day until the damp has gone away and dried out.

Herbal remedies

Make a mixture that includes eight teaspoons of salt, one teaspoon of alum, one teaspoon of bicarbonate soda, and a liter or 2 liters of white vinegar. Apply this solution to the walls that have rising damp after mixing all the ingredients. Leave it for about 24 hours to completely dry before using a damp course or another form of protection.

Use Of Bleaching Agents Such as Sodium Hypochlorite

Wash the walls with this solution to get rid of all the bacteria on them. Ensure that you wear gloves, goggles, and a face mask to protect yourself from the chemicals in the bleach.

Conclusion

Leaving rising damp untreated can lead to more expensive and complicated repairs later on. It is because the moisture that has already soaked into your basement will continue to work its way up, causing mold growth and structural damage in your home. It’s vital to treat rising damp as soon as it is discovered both for you and future homeowners who may purchase or rent from you.

References

Jordan Harris

From the earliest age I can remember, I was planning and building things, and there was no question that Architecture was the right career fit for me. With more than 20 years of experience in the industry, I am absolutely thrilled and privileged to share my knowledge and experience with everyone through this blog.

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