Whether it’s your first property or your fiftieth, maintenance is a key aspect of keeping all buildings healthy and in good shape. For property owners, there are countless different challenges that you can face whilst trying to keep your home or commercial space working effectively, but one of the most common problems to come across is damp.
Damp is caused by water accessing areas of your walls, ceilings, and floors, leaving them wet for a long period of time. Unable to dry, these spaces become breeding grounds for fungi and mold, leading to ugly black mold and potentially expensive repair work.
Understanding the susceptibility of your property is a key step to staying vigilant when it comes to damp issues. Using this quick guide, we will cover three common property traits that can lead to more common damp problems. With this information, you can be more prepared to deal with the issues you might face, as well as consider home improvements that might help prevent problems occurring at all.
Whilst all damp is caused by spaces remaining wet for a long period of time, the reason for why these areas are wet can vary massively. One of the most common causes of damp is actually condensation.
Condensation occurs when warm water vapor in the air comes into contact with a cold surface. This cools the vapor into liquid water, resulting in tiny water droplets being left on the surface. This is commonly seen on windows or mirrors but it can occur almost anywhere.
Insulation is designed to keep your property warm by retaining heat. Without it, not only is your property colder but the walls are too. As a result, when showering or cooking, warm water vapor is released into the air which is much more likely to cool on your walls, leading to tiny water droplets making the surface wet. If this is repeated often enough, it can lead to areas of your wall being permanently wet, resulting in damp and mold growth.
If your home is poorly insulated, consider investing in addressing this to reduce both energy costs and damp risk.
It makes sense that as property ages it becomes less resistant to potential water access; however, it might surprise you that one of the most common risks comes from the ground rather than from the sky.
Rising damp occurs when groundwater begins rising through-wall masonry through capillary action. Usually, this is prevented by something called a damp proof course which serves as a barrier stopping water from rising any further. Unfortunately, this damp proof course can become damaged over time, making rising damp more common in older properties.
This is a particular issue in old cities like London. Fortunately, there are many different London damp specialists, as well as plenty of other experts in the world’s older cities. Businesses are naturally drawn to the areas where their services will be needed most.
Damaged or Blocked Guttering
Guttering is designed to channel rainwater off your roof and onto the ground, keeping it out and away from your property. For the most part, this is very successful but if left unchecked, guttering can actually cause damp problems for you.
When buildings become damaged or blocked during heavy rain, the water they are meant to channel can build up and spill over into your walls. This doesn’t always lead to damp problems but it can definitely result in water entering your property. If unaddressed during repeated heavy rain, this can result in long-term wet areas and in turn, damp and mold. Keep an eye on your gutter’s health to try and avoid this.
Every property can be susceptible to some form of damp threat simply due to how we build our homes and buildings. Always stay vigilant of damp areas and if they don’t disappear after a short while make sure to investigate where the water affecting them might be coming from. You’ll save yourself a lot of money and pain if you can stop damp in its tracks.