Effective damp-proofing in the Forest of Dean

Damp-proofing is often required in older properties in the Forest of Dean as they may have been built without a physical damp-proof course (such as in stone built cottages etc) or the existing damp-proof course has failed.
Forest Dampbusters use a variety of different methods to combat rising damp but the most popular with our clients in the Forest of Dean and Wye Valley is to pressure inject a chemical damp-proofing solution into brickwork or masonry. This damp-proofing fluid is intended to cure across the thickness of the wall and form a barrier and restrict the upward passage of moisture. However stone built properties in the Forest of Dean and Wye Valley are sometimes not suitable for this form of chemical damp-proofing as the damp-proofing fluid can often run away within the rubble infill and often the only thing that is preventing dampness internally is the waterproof render that is applied to all damp walls. Forest Dampbusters therefore offer two different methods which have proven to be very successful in preventing rising damp in stone built properties.
One of these systems is a frozen damp-proof course (Freezteq) which involves inserting frozen pellets of damp-proofing fluid into pre-drilled holes and on thawing the damp-proofing fluid gently diffuses into the masonry ensuring that the whole cross-section of wall is saturated with the damp-proofing fluid which reverses the capillary effect of the masonry and forms an effective damp-proof barrier which will prevent rising dampness from the ground. This system comes with a 20 year guarantee against the occurrence of rising damp.
Another highly effective method is with the use of damp-proofing injection mortar. Holes are drilled at an angle on both sides of thick stone walls and then a waterproof slurry is injected into the walls. The slurry contains sodium bentonite which has excellent waterproofing properties and this expands in the wall to fill any pores and cracks within the wall. The slurry starts to solidify within an hour of injection and on curing will form an impermeable barrier against rising damp and provide a highly effective damp-proof course. This injection mortar damp-proofing system also comes with a 20 year guarantee against the recurrence of rising damp.
Another alternative method is an electro-osmosis damp-proofing systems which provide a small electrical charge repels rising moisture molecules down the walls and back into the ground. Providing this tiny positive charge is maintained, the protected walls will stay dry and damp free.
We can also install physical damp-proof course by removing sections of the wall, fitting a membrane and then re-building the wall. Other environmentally friendly, chemical free methods of damp-proofing are promoting better drainage around the base of external walls and the fitting of French Drains.
A highly advertised form of chemical free damp-proofing is often seen in the press promoting a Dutch damp-proofing system which involves drilling holes and installing specially designed bricks fitted into the outside walls. According to manufacturers of this Dutch damp-proofing system, these bricks allow air to flow into the air chambers and the airflow causes moisture to evaporate which will lead to walls drying out. There is no scientific evidence to confirm that the Dutch damp-proofing system is as effective as the manufacturers claim and some cynics say that they are no better than air bricks and they are heavily reliant on which way the wind blows.
Manufacturers of the Dutch damp-proofing system claim that there is no need for any internal works such as replastering or replacement of skirting boards but one installation of this damp-proofing system that we have seen in Newland Street, Coleford shows the brick inserts which stop rising damp approximately 300mm above ground level. This means that rising damp would still occur up to the height of the inserts which would lead to salt contamination of plaster and dampness and possible decay of skirtings and other timbers in contact with damp walls.
damp-proof course
The effects of rising damp can usually damage internal plaster and any timbers in contact with damp walls. To provide a complete service we can also carry out any necessary replastering and timber replacement works.
Re-plastering usually means that plaster affected by damp has to removed to a height of approximately 1.2m ( 4 feet in English) and then replaced with a waterproof render before applying a skim finish ready for decorating.
Timbers affected by damp such as skirting boards, floorboards and joists etc should be removed and replaced with pre-treated softwood.
Forest Dampbusters can quote for and carry these associated works but we leave the option open for our clients to use their own builders to undertake these works in accordance with our specifications in order to reduce costs. Even if the ancillary works are not carried out by Forest Dampbusters we will still provide 20 year insured guarantees against rising damp which you may require for you Building Society/ Bank for mortgage purposes.
All guarantees are backed by a 20 year insurance policy and these insured guarantees give you peace of mind in the event that Forest Dampbusters cease trading so that your guarantee will still be honoured. Insurance backed guarantees are issued in association with Construction Guarantee Services who provide insured guarantees for approved contractors in the damp-proofing and timber treatment industry which are authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority and are accepted by Banks and Building Societies for mortgage purposes.
If you feel that your property is affected by rising damp then please feel free to call us on 01594 837300 for free impartial advice. At Forest Dampbusters we are happy to discuss any damp related problems that may be having an adverse effect on your house. Usually initial surveys are also free but if we are required to provide a report as part of a mortgage requirement then a charge will be made. This charge depends on the size of the property and scope of the survey but can be offset against the cost of any work that we subsequently carry out.
Most of our work is carried out within the Forest of Dean and Wye Valley area but we are able to travel further afield and welcome enquiries from Gloucester, Ledbury, Hereford, Abergavenny, Newport and all surrounding areas
Please call us on 01594 837300 or email us at enquiries@forest-dampbusters.co.uk for further information. You can also request a survey online.