Cheap Ways of Damp Proofing Your Home
31 May 2022
Right now the whole of the UK is facing a pretty severe cost of living crisis. This is going to have a direct effect on many properties, and in many cases the addition of damp is only going to make things worse as that damp ruins a properties ability to retain heat.
Here we are going to talk about what kind of problems a home might face in the light of rising energy costs, and some of the cheapest and most cost effective methods of combating them in light of everything getting more expensive.
Low Cost Protection Against Rising Damp
Rising damp is a common form of damp, and one that isn’t brought about by a general failing in your property but by a very specific failure within the installed damp proof course on your home.
Once the Damp Proof Course (otherwise known as a DPC) has been compromised you will find that moisture that occurs naturally within the ground as well as after rainfall will be absorbed into your properties walls through a process known as capillary action.
Realistically there is no way to restore a DPC without involving a specialist CSRT certified damp proofing expert who can install a new damp proof course for you. The best advice we can give here is to keep an eye on your properties walls, up to around a meter off of the floor.
Rising damp is usually incapable of rising further than that height, so keep an eye out for damp patches that rise from the floor to around that height. You might want to check during periods of heavy rainfall, as the wetter it is outside the easier it will be to spot that you have damp in your home.
Vigilance against rising damp really is the best defence, as if it’s caught early you won’t have to go through the annoying and costly process of replacing wallpaper, plasterboard, skirting, wooden joists – you get the idea.
If you need quick and effective protection against rising damp, or would like to learn how effective your damp proof course is, then you can always arrange a survey here.
Cheap Methods of Protecting Against Penetrating Damp
Unlike rising damp, penetrating damp is brought about by a general failing within a properties construction. This could be anything; bad pointing, leaky gutters, blocked drains – basically anything that allows liquid to travel where it shouldn’t in a home.
The best bit of advice we can give to help you put a stop to penetrating damp on a budget is to act fast when it comes to repairs. This applies to any kind of defect on the inside or outside of your home that might allow moisture into the walls, timber, or any other aspect of your building.
This could be as simple as having your gutters cleaned out regularly, or staying on top of your pointing, or even making sure that any waterproofing you have had installed remains fully operational, and is still protecting your property.
Whilst it might seem controversial of us to recommend regular maintenance, or carrying out repair work when needed on your property, we can promise you that the cost of keeping your property in a healthy and complete condition is going to be much smaller than the cost of repairs, replacement, and any damp proofing and mitigation that might have to be undertaken as a result of penetrating damp.
Don’t forget, damp can lead to things like dry rot, black mould, ruined plasterwork, timber, carpet, and other decorative aspects in your home. Keeping it protected is much less expensive then ignoring a damp problem and having to tackle it, and the associated fallout, later.
This is the best advice that can be applied to cases of penetrating damp, but what else can you do outside of keeping an eye on your properties health to prevent penetrating damp from setting in?
One job you could take on is adding a layer of protection to the exterior of your home. Something like masonry waterproofing is ideal when it comes to stopping penetrating damp.
As we mentioned, penetrating damp comes from a failure within your properties building materials. Combine this with the knowledge that brickwork isn’t waterproof, and you might start to see the value in an extra layer of protection on the exterior of your home.
A waterproofing cream for masonry, like our own WeatherTek, can be a key instrument in protection against not only damp, but thermal inefficiency.
As a masonry waterproofing cream, WeatherTek works to protect your walls from damp setting in. It will protect your masonry from water penetration in cracks and holes smaller than 0.3mm wide, which over time (and through the cycle of frost driven degradation) can be a key factor in penetrating damp setting in.
If you are on the fence about applying a waterproofing cream to the outside of your home, think about the added benefit of having increased energy saving capabilities in your home. WeatherTek is able to help you save up to 29% on energy, making it not only a cost effective barrier against damp, but also an inexpensive extra layer of insulation on your property.
Inexpensive Ways to Deal with Condensation
Condensation, as we have talked about before, is one of the main ways that people all across England, Scotland, and Wales come to experience damp in their home.
Condensation is a source of damp that is primarily based on the behaviour of people in the property. That means that if you are finding moisture on your walls or windows, and it’s the product of condensation, then you could well be able to alleviate that problem for a very small cost.
So, lets assume that your property is generating a lot of condensation, what steps can you take to reduce it – and which condensation stopping steps are the best?
First, you can increase the amount of ventilation in your property. Ventilation is key if you want to reduce condensation in your property, as it helps keep the moist air from condensing on your walls, which given time could turn into a much more serious problem.
Then you need to consider your everyday behaviour. For example, whilst it might be cheaper to dry clothes on a clothes horse or a radiator than running a tumble dryer, you have to remember that the moisture from those clothes is only going to form as condensation in your property if the room they are in is improperly ventilated.
You can read more about the different actions you might take to reduce condensation in your property on our site, but we appreciate that cost cutting actions like the one described above might be the easiest course of action for many.
Please keep ventilation in mind when attempting to preserve and get the most out of heat in your property.
You can also look into damp proof paints, and damp proof wall coatings. These different internally applicable coatings are a great way of not only protecting your property from condensation, but also for increasing your heat preservation and the general improvement of your internal insulation at home.
A coating like our own ThermalTek is a good example of a cost effective insulating paint for your walls. The way it works is similar to a thermos: once the ThermalTek has been painted onto your interior walls the micro glass beads inside the ThermalTek reflect thermal energy away from your walls.
All of this means that when moist air comes into contact with your walls it will be prevented from condensing, because the walls will now have a higher temperature, and that moist air will be unable to condense.
You can also consider your property better protected from black mould and damp, as the lowered likelihood of condensation on your walls means that the conditions for both mould and damp wont be as prominent.
Basically, ThermalTek increases the thermal efficiency of your property in whatever room its applied within, whilst at the same time helping reducing the likelihood of condensation and condensation based damp. It can be papered or painted over as well, helping you increase the longevity of whatever decoration you want put on your walls.
If you are worried about damp in your home and want to put a stop to it before it runs out of control, you can always talk to our team. We can conduct a proper survey of your property, and we are always upfront about our costs and fees.