In the past a certain amount (sometimes a lot) of dampness in buildings was accepted as part of life. However, times have changed, today's living standards are much higher than a few hundred years ago and a damp free home became an essential requirement of modern life.
Buildings of the past also keep getting older with every passing year, prone to decay and damp, so various damp proofing technologies and solutions have emerged over the years in response to the increasing building standards, attempting to solve the various damp problems.
Buildings can get wet from several sources. The most common source of moisture is the environment - mostly rain.
The most common moisture sources affecting buildings are:
- Water ingress (e.g. roof, chimneys)
- Penetrating damp (e.g. rainwater)
- Penetrating damp, underground (e.g. cellars)
- Splash water
- Leaks (building defects)
- Hygroscopic moisture (from salts)
- Rising damp
- Condensation, both surface and in-depth (interstitial)
Some of these dampness problems have obvious physical causes and must be sorted by physical means. Fixing a broken gutter, digging a drain to channel the water away, repointing the cracks in a stone wall etc. - all require some sort of physical intervention.
Other dampness problems, however, are much more subtle, they happen slowly and often invisibly. These are caused by various electro-chemical molecular phenomena, which can not always be solved effectively with "brute force" approach or by physical means only.
The chemical effect of salts and their hygroscopic nature, various surface- and capillary phenomena, interstitial (in-depth) condensation, evaporation etc. are just some examples which mainly occur at molecular level, driven by various molecular electro-chemical phenomena. These manifestations, due to their invisible nature, are the most difficult to spot, understand and handle.
We specialize in professional dampness surveys and the permanent, non-invasive handling of rising damp and its related phenomena including the hygroscopic effect of ground salts, as well as long-term building monitoring.