Tag: damp proofing hawick

Damp Proofing Scottish Borders

First Time Buyers Guide To Damp

Buying a new home is an exciting time, especially if it’s your first property. However, it’s important to take the process seriously to ensure that the property you intend to purchase is in a safe state. When buying a property, you will always have a survey produced by either your mortgage provider or external body. These reports determine the value and quality of the property, which includes pointing out any causes for concern – including damp.

Most old properties show signs of damp simply due to their age, and a lot of properties have damp that are caused simply by not opening windows or adequately heating the property, whereas others have detrimental causes that are deep down and unseen. I often come across people who have moved into a new house and not realised the severity of the damp in the property.

Some people simply assume that damp is a minor issue, whereas others decide to investigate the problem post-purchase. However, in doing so, repairing the damage caused by the damp and prevent it from reoccurring can be extremely costly, so it’s always best to have a damp proof assessment prior to completing your purchase so you know exactly what’s causing the damp and more importantly, how it can be treated, repaired and prevented.

If you’re in the processing of buying your first home, I’d always recommend a damp proof survey, just so that you’re aware of the potential risks and damage, and of course, how to prevent this moving forward. If the quote for repair is more than pocket change, you always have the option to renegotiate the buying price of the property to account for the cost of repair.

As a first time buyer, it’s important that you do your homework so that you’re able to spot the tell-tale signs of damp in a property so that you can rest assured that the damp – if any – is able to be repaired and of course, affordable. I’ve put together a few pointers on how to spot signs of damp, but don’t forget, just because you can’t see damp, doesn’t mean it’s not there! If you’re unsure, seek the help of a professional damp treatment expert to advise you.

RISING DAMP

Rising damp is particularly common in older buildings, and on the whole, the MOST common problem I am requested to investigate when people are buying their first home. Rising damp is caused by moisture rising through the stone and brickwork and in most circumstances, it can be dealt with a chemical damp proof course and renewing any affected plaster to the walls. Rising damp can be spotted if wallpaper is peeling from the walls, tide marks on the walls, areas that are damp to the touch, crumbly or paste-link plaster, and even rusty nails in skirting boards. There are, of course, other solutions available, especially if the rising damp has managed to cause secondary issues, such as dry/wet rot or salt contamination to the plaster.

PENETRATING DAMP

Penetrating damp is generally the result of leaking down pipes, leaking gutters or roof related issues. These problems allow water to get into your property, causing the walls the become wet. This type of damp is usually seen on the outside of the house, with the damp patches increasing in size after a bout of heavy rain. There are a number of solutions available to repair penetrating damp, including using membrane systems. If left untreated, the structure of your home could become seriously unsafe as wet and dry rot become present in large joists and lintels in the area.

CONDENSATION

Condensation is potentially the most ‘ignored’ sign of damp in your home, simply because people think it’s ‘common’ and it ‘happens’. However, condensation can definitely be a sign of a more serious issue at play. Condensation itself is caused by a lack of heating, ventilation and/or insulation, and can often be misdiagnosed as rising damp. Signs of condensation in your home include but are not limited to: mould growth on carpets and wallpaper and water on cool surfaces such as worktops and windows. The main way of dealing with condensation is to seek out the cause and source ways of reducing the amount of moisture being created in the property, for instance, by increasing ventilation.

Do you think your new property may have damp? Does your home report or survey suggest that damp is a serious issue but you’re unable to figure out how to fix it? Get Keith Rennie to assess your property, he will thoroughly survey your home and make a full assessment on works required to repair any damage caused by, and further prevent, damp in your home. Contact Keith Rennie today!



Condensation Control

How NOT To Prevent Condensation In Your Home

What IS Condensation?

Condensation is possibly the most common form of dampness you can find in your home, and occurs when warm, moist air meets a cold surface. This is why people often see condensation on their windows and it is often found in both kitchens and bathrooms, where ventilation can be restricted.

Condensation, although it may seem like a small issue, can cause big problems within your property. It can cause damp patches to appear on your walls, in addition to causing wallpaper to peel, and creating a build-up of water and moisture on windows.

There is a long list of the effects of condensation and it’s important to be able to spot the problem quickly and seek a professional to fix and prevent the problem from reoccurring. A lot of people try their hand at managing condensation in their home, and without knowledge of the root problem or how their efforts might work out, they actually end up making the issue worse.

If you’re hoping to manage a condensation issue before seeking the help of a professional, be sure to avoid doing the following:

Heating Your Home on a High Setting Once Daily

It’s no surprise that many people put their heating on when they come in from work on a very high setting so that the house warms up quickly, then they proceed to turn it off. However, this can cause big condensation problems in your home. To avoid this, rather than letting temperatures go from one extreme to another, try and keep your home at a constant temperature, not to mention that heating a cold house (rather than a warm house) uses more energy.

Using Extractor Fans Incorrectly

When you’ve finished cooking in the kitchen, or showering in the bathroom, it’s important that you leave your extractor fan running for around fifteen minutes afterwards. There will still be moisture in the air that you can’t see. By turning the extractor fan off too soon, you’re leaving the room at risk of developing serious condensation problems. If you don’t have an extractor fan in your kitchen or bathroom, be sure to keep a window open as this will have a similar effect.

Placing Furniture Flush Against Walls

Whether it’s a cupboard, a bookcase, a bed, a settee, or any other type of furniture, do not push it right up against the wall. If air becomes trapped between said furniture and the wall, it could quickly condense and would eventually form mould. To prevent this from occurring, you should always try and leave a small gap between the walls and the furniture to stop black mould from appearing and causing issues.

Putting Wet Items on Hot Radiators

Normally, your clothes come out of the washing machine damp, but certainly not soaked. If you find yourself often hanging wet items on radiators throughout your home, all that moisture will evaporate back into your home. Where possible, hang washing outside, tumble dry or ensure that items aren’t sodden if they are placed on radiators around your home. This will work to prevent any issues with condensation in the future.

Thinking about condensation control for your home? Get Keith Rennie to assess your property, he will thoroughly survey the condensation issue and make a full assessment on works required to repair any damage. Contact Keith Rennie today!