Rising Damp is a common problem in older buildings. Moisture rises up the wall by capillary action depositing salts and damaging the wall finishes. However Rising Damp is less common than commonly thought and dampness at the base of a wall may be due to other damp problems such as Penetrating Damp and Condensation. More often than not the cause is due to bridging of an existing Damp Proof Course by high ground levels.
What are the signs of Rising Damp?
Decayed skirting boards, crumbling or salt stained plaster, discolouration and staining, decayed timber floors, peeling paint and wallpaper are all common when walls are affected by rising damp. These defects are not always evident but when they are, a specialist inspection is always recommended.
Electronic moisture meters are commonly used to diagnose Rising Dampness but these commonly give false high readings with certain paint and wall finishes, fail to diagnose Condensation and Hygroscopic Salts (from an historic problem).
If high readings are given with a moisture meter then further investigation should be carried out. Mortar Sampling of the masonry is the only accurate way of quantifying the Absolute Moisture Contents and Hygroscopic Salt levels in the masonry
NEPR using over 25 years experience, will carry out a visual inspection of the problem areas backed up by electronic moisture meters. Mortar Sampling of the masonry will be carried out where necessary to accurately determine the moisture levels and Hygroscopic Salt levels in the masonry. The solutions to this problem are varied and depend on the individual circumstances, for instance ground levels may need to be reduced, new lime plaster may be required on the internal walls, dry lining systems may be necessary or physical Damp Proof Courses may be recommended. Chemically Injected Damp Proof Courses are usually recommended.