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Rising Damp(Salt Damp)
   
 

Rising Damp(Salt Damp) is not the most common form of dampness encountered in buildings: this is left to condensation. However a high proprtion of older buildings are affected by rising damp to some degree or another.

Rising Damp in buildings occurs when water from the the ground rises up through the bricks and mortar of a building by a process loosely termed "capilliarity." In simple terms, the water rises up the wall of a building in the same way that oil rises up through the wick of a lamp.

The height to which the water rises depends on several factors including por structure of the brick and mortar and the rate of evaporation.

GROUND WATER AND HYGROSCOPIC SALTS

Ground water contains soluble salts, the most significant of which are chlorides, nitrates and sulphates. When rising damp occurs, these pass with the water up the wall and are left behind when the water evaporates. Over many years of active dampness large quantities of these salts accumulate within the masonry and decorative surface, most becoming concentrated in a general 'slat band' towards the maximum height of rise. Both chlorides and nitrates are usually hygroscopic,(ie they can absorb from the sorrounding environment) and, in general the greater the amount of saltsthe greater the absorption of moisture -especially under humid conditions. Thus, eventhough rising dampness may have been controlled by the insertion of a remedial damp-course the salts alone can cause the wall and any contaminated decorations to remain damp. It is for this reason that specialist replastering is such an important aspect of rising damp treatment.

TREATMENT OF RISING DAMP

Treatment of rising damp(known as "damp-proofing" or "dampcoursing") typically involves the installation of a chemical DPC followed by replastering using a salt retardent render. However, with the introduction of damproof creams, the process has now been simplified. The cream is injected into the holes in the masonry without the need for an injection pump.

Choosing a waterbased cream rather than the older paraffin based system will allow for a cleaner and quicker installation. A good quality cream like Dryzone(30 year warranty) are odourless, non-toxic and contain no hydrocarbon solvents. Waterbased creams are completely safe with no volatile chemicals, allergy free, non-caustic and non flammable.

 

 

 
 
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