A damp problem that has been ignored can result in deterioration of a building’s structural integrity. Whether in new or old buildings, it can cause issues such as timber structures and skirting boards to rot. It can also encourage the growth of mould, which is a health hazard.
How do you treat rising damp internal walls?
The first symptom of Rising Damp is that the paint or plasterwork in your home starts to peel away. This is because water ingress into the wall is not being stopped as it should be with a damp proof course (DPC).
When surface water penetrates the masonry, it forms a stain on the wall, in the shape of a so-called tide mark where it has penetrated. It can also cause the mortar in the external walls to crumble, leaving a white salt stain on the wall.
Other signs of rising damp are the appearance of efflorescence – a white salt deposit which looks unsightly on painted surfaces and in woodwork. It’s also common for the paint and plaster on walls to start debonding as it absorbs groundwater, which causes a visible peeling effect.
Unlike penetrating damp and condensation, rising damp cannot be diagnosed without expert advice from a damp specialist or chartered building surveyor. An incorrect diagnosis can lead to further damage and unnecessary costs, so it’s always best to seek professional help before you attempt to fix the issue yourself. If you’re unsure of the source of the problem, an electrical moisture meter can be used to establish a “moisture profile” which can give a rough indication of what’s happening.