When it comes to rising damp treatment, membrane systems are considered to be an effective alternative to most conventional damp proofing methods such as chemical damp proof courses (DPCs), cementations and bitumous paint on coatings and external water repellents. This is because membrane systems generally require minimal preparation, are quick to install, and are considered to be most sympathetic to the structure. They are reversible and can be ventilated which make them particularly ideal for use on conservation and historic projects as well as for refurbishment, renovation and new build where damp treatment is required. |
Part of the process almost always includes hacking off existing plaster which is an extremely disruptive and messy process when an injected damp proof course is used in damp walls where damp treatment is needed. Drilling and injecting the chemical DPC is an exact science in that the holes have to be drilled to the right diameter, at the right spacing and to the correct depth if the installation it to be effective. The exact gauge of DPC cream or fluid in relation to the thickness of the wall and what it is built from need to be calculated and used to achieve totally effective diffusion into the substrate which is especially tricky in buildings constructed of varied materials or poorly built structures where there are large fishers and voids. As a rising damp treatment, damp proofing membranes can be applied over most existing wall finishes without the need to remove them. No guess work is required and the membranes are offered up to the walls, drilled and fixed quickly and cleanly the same way to almost any substrate. The damp-proofing membranes provide an impervious barrier to protect the internal finishes which require rising damp treatment, without changing the status quo of the wall.
If a DPC fluid is used then the active ingredient is mixed with water as the carrier and so you are effectively introducing more fluid into an already damp wall thus making it wetter! If there is any organic material like timber (skirting boards, door linings, architraves, fixing blocks etc) in contact with the damp wall then there is a risk that wood rotting fungi like dry or wet rot could germinate and in many cases cause serious decay. Dry rot treatment in particular can be very disruptive and expensive. Damp timber will also promote and harbor wood boring insects more commonly known as woodworm. Resulting in the need to completely remove and replace the item or wood worm treatment by a specialist wood worm treatment company may be necessary infestation by wood boring insects can have a detrimental effect to the timber. Membrane systems completely isolate the decorative joinery and timber items from any dampness in the walls thus prolonging their longevity. Damp surfaces lead to mould growth so mould removal is necessary too.
When it comes to dealing with other damp problems or application of the injected damp proof course and the associated re-plastering when used as a rising damp treatment, damp proofing membranes factor out human error. Produced identically at source, damp proofing membranes are physical products. Once they are applied to the wall, they adequately to protect the internal finishes from salting and dampness.
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