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Always research the subject thoroughly.

Check out local companies that claim to be experts in damp issues.  Check their 'qualifications'.  Find out where they live, where they operate from. Would YOU trust these people?  Ask them to explain the various sources of dampness in an old house - ask them how they can tell the difference between rising damp and other sources of water.  Can they actually tell you how 'rising damp' is supposed to work - I can't !

Damp & Condensation

You will find ads all over these pages - we dont choose them, they appear. They happen to be VERY useful - research the companies that appear in them - research their claims, and then come back to this site and you'll understand what I'm talking about. Put the postcode into google earth and have a look at some of the shambolic places they are registered to - would YOU use anyone who lived there?

Do they offer a Free Survey?  Would you offer your professional services for free? Of course not. But these people aren't professionals - they are gormless con artists following a set routine to flog you 'treatments' that are not needed - it is fraud. 

Be careful - most damp companies are now charging £75 for a survey - that's right - you PAY THEM to come and try to sell you damp proofing.  Remember - if they charge you, you can sue them for fraudulent misrepresentation as soon as they produce a report that tries to sell you chemicals.  Rest assured that you will never need any chemicals, injected or smeared on the wall.  

All their adverts talk about "Eradicating rising damp"  we are a "Family Run Business", "Established for over 30 years", and every one has a statement that "rising damp is due to a lack of an effective damp proof course" - which is complete garbage.  Peter Cox will give you a 'report' that's got about 30 pages of rubbish and a 1 page 'report' which is a sales pitch.  Nothing technical and no diagnosis.

Penetrating Damp examples...

Have a look at these - all common causes of penetrating damp which are nearly always interpreted as rising damp so some fraudulent chemical salesman can flog you injection damp proofing or tanking.. All you need to do is fix the relevant problem!

Click the Photo to see a gallery of examples..

Defective rainwater downpipe causing penetrating damp

Penetrating Damp

We've put a few photos here of different types of penetrating damp.  Dont forget it can come from all sorts of places - but common causes include:

Ground levels outside are too high - above the top of the floors internally

Rainwater goods discharging against the wall

Water being drawn through soft and porous stone that appears internally

Cracks or holes in mortar joints

Penetrating damp
Water being pulled through a very porous stone window sill which bridges from the outside of the wall to the inside. This is a common problem with old stone window sills.

Penetrating damp in Edinburgh

This is a classic example of how penetrating damp can be caused.  A stone arched gateway butted up to the house wall, and was not properly flashed to keep water off the join.  It ran down the wall, and was trapped in the structure of the gateway - with nowhere else to go, it emerged inside the house, soaking the hallway wall.

Penetrating damp caused by gateway
Detail of penetrating damp
Penetrating damp internally