Damp in your home can be a homeowners worst nightmare. Damp not only causes unsightly stains and unpleasant odours. It can also cause severe damage to the structure of the property and have serious health hazards for occupants. 
Recognising the signs of damp early on is crucial for preventing further problems and ensuring a healthy living environment. There are several different ways to spot damp in your home. In this blog post, we’ll explore four common signs of damp, providing practical solutions for fixing them. 

1. Musty damp smell 

Most damp problems often give themselves away initially through a musty smell. So, keep your nose out for a persistent musty or damp odour in your property. This is especially seen in poorly ventilated areas like basements, crawl spaces, or bathrooms. If you detect this smell in a certain room, start checking for damp by examining the walls, floors, and ceilings. 
Try to identify the problem. This may be a leak, water ingress, or high humidity levels. Once the source has been located, it’s time to start eliminating the problem. Improve ventilation levels by opening windows, using exhaust fans, or installing ventilation systems. Consider using odour absorbers or deodorisers to neutralise lingering smells. 
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2. Peeling or discoloured wallpaper 

Damp on walls can cause your wallpaper to start peeling off the wall. Other signs include paint discolouration and plaster becoming crumbly. Check especially along your skirting boards or near windows for paint that is peeling, bubbling, or discoloured. These are all signs of damp occurring. Look out for these signs, especially when plaster is crumbling down on walls, as this can be a sign of rising damp. 
To fix this problem, address any underlying moisture issues, such as leaks. Or call in a rising damp specialist to fix the problem and prevent any further damage to the walls. The affected wallpaper and paint will need to be removed. Then, allow the walls to dry thoroughly, and repair any damaged surfaces. A damp proof membrane or sealant will need to be applied to the affected areas. This will help prevent moisture from penetrating the walls in the future. 
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3. Visible mould or mildew 

Damp can cause spots of black mould to form on walls, ceilings, and around window frames and doors. This is one of the most visible signs of damp and can be harmful to your health if left untreated, especially to those with raspatory problems like asthma. 
Existing mould and mildew can be removed using a solution of water and soap, or a commercial mould remover. You should also consider improving ventilation in the affected areas by opening windows, using extractor fans, or installing a dehumidifier. To prevent mould from reoccurring, you must address any underlying moisture issues, such as leaks or condensation. 

4. Damp patches or stains 

If your walls are damp to touch, or you spot brown or yellow-tinged stains appearing on your walls, ceilings, or floors, you likely have a damp problem. To treat this, you must first investigate the source of the moisture causing the damp patches. This could be due to plumbing leaks, roof leaks, or condensation. Any leaks will need to be repaired quickly. Consider calling in a professional to address any underlying structural issues that may have occurred. This can include things like damaged roof tiles or cracked walls. The affected surfaces will then need to be treated with a mould resistant primer, before being repainted. 
Knowing the signs of damp and the correct way to treat them is very important. Noticing the signs of damp early on allows you to take proactive measures to address the underlying moisture issues. By doing this, homeowners can effectively prevent further damage to their home. Regular maintenance, proper ventilation, and early repairs are essential for keeping damp away. If you’re unsure how to tackle damp problems in your home, don’t hesitate to call us, your trusted local damp experts for help! 
If you’d like to discuss damp proofing for your home, contact us on 01604 380 930. 
Tagged as: Damp, Damp proofing, Mould
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