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Are you encountering musty, mouldy smells in your home? Or perhaps you’ve spotted peeling plaster or found water damage on the walls? Then you could have a damp problem. 

When spotted early, dampness can be fixed and treated, while your home can be damp proofed for the future. But if left to fester, then damp can cause costly damage to your property. But what is damp exactly? And how can you spot it in your home? In this article, we explain what damp is, how to spot it and how your home can be protected against it. Keep reading to find out everything you need to know about damp in your home. 

What Is Damp?

So what is damp? Damp is caused by the presence of moisture within a property. It can be caused by flooding, condensation, poor ventilation, or by water moving through the walls of a home. 

When left unchecked, damp can damage walls and decoration, lead to fungal growths and musty smells and, in extreme cases, it can even cause structural damage to property. 

The most common signs of damp include:

  • Damp, musty smells wafting through the house
  • Fungal growths or mould
  • Damaged wallpaper or plasterboard
  • Visible water damage or wet walls
  • Crumbling masonry or damaged brickwork 
  • Salty tide marks on walls

Signs of damp can be seen either inside or outside the home, but you’re more likely to notice them inside before you notice any problems outside. There can be many reasons for the presence of damp, so if you are worried that there is damp in your home, it’s a good idea to call in a professional to investigate further. 

What’s the Difference Between Rising Damp and Penetrating Damp?

Damp is caused by the presence of some form of moisture in the home, but there are several types of damp. 

The most common damp problem is condensation. This is the least damaging and easiest to prevent type of damp, as it’s almost always caused by lack of ventilation. Opening windows in the kitchen or bathroom when hot water is running is one of the easiest ways to stop condensation from causing damage. 

The two other more serious types of damp are:
  • Rising damp
  • Penetrating damp

Both have similar signs, but there are subtle differences that mean different treatments need to be applied. Let’s take a look at those differences in more detail.

Rising Damp

Rising damp occurs when water is allowed to move upwards through the walls of a property. This occurs through capillary action and usually happens when a flood or leak inside allows water to seep into the walls, from ground level upwards. Installing a damp-proof course at ground level that acts as a waterproof membrane is a great way to stop rising damp. 

Penetrating Damp

Penetrating damp can cause serious damage anywhere in the home, and it commonly occurs as a result of broken pipes, floods or spills within a property. Unlike rising damp, which only results from ground level floods, penetrating damp can appear in the ceilings, roof, or anywhere else affected by leaks. 

What Is Damp Proofing?

Damp proofing is the only way to ensure that your home is fully protected against moisture and is fully waterproofed. Without adequate damp-proofing methods, different types of damp can take hold and cause damage throughout your property. 

There are several different methods of damp proofing, and a combination of techniques can be employed to combat damp problems. The most common damp-proofing methods include:

  • Removing potential sources of water or moisture (such as broken pipes)
  • Ensuring a home is sufficiently well ventilated to stop condensation
  • Injecting a chemical damp-proof course into walls to create a waterproof barrier
  • Digging around the base of the home or lowering the ground level to make sure water can’t seep inside

Contact Atlantis Damp to Find Out More about Damp in Your Home

Identifying rising or penetrating damp early can help you to resolve the problem before it causes serious damage to your property. If you believe there might be damp in your home, our expert team is here to help. 

Our family-run business can assist with problems arising from all forms of damp in the home, and we can provide damp-proofing solutions that ensure your house is well protected in the future. Contact Atlantis Damp today for more information.