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Damp Proofing

How to tell if it's condensation or penetrating damp

So me and my fiancé moved into a flat 6 months ago and 2 months ago we start to get mould growth in the property.

It's under investigation by the letting agency (and has been for two months). We want to know if there's definite signs which will point to this being a penetrating damp issue?

Here's a few more details:
- we don't have sufficient heating because we only have a heater in one room which blows out hot air, this makes us feel sick so I we tend to keep it off.
- I air out the flat for atleast an hour a day to keep moisture levels down.
- we don't have a window in the bathroom but we always use the extractor fan (we also use the fan above the hob when cooking and the kitchen window is open a lot).
- the mould is only occurring on outward facing walls, has black mould spores and dark patches of damp which is causing the paint to chip (there also looks like effervescence on the lower wall just above the skirting boards).
- The mould and damp started on a wall in the corner and spread to the nearest window.
- we have rotten wooden window fixtures on the outside of the property (we had a window repairman look at it when he fixed a broken window next to the mould problem and he said all of the fixtures on the property needed to be replaced).
- There's obvious weaknesses in the interior wall where we're having the most issue with mould.

I try my best to battle condensation daily. I wipe down the built up condensation overnight and air out the flat for an hour or two. We always use the extractor fans in the kitchen and bathroom (and have the window open in the kitchen when cooking). We keep a really clean house, and when we dry the clothes I always have a window open next to the clothes to let the moisture escape (our bathroom is too small to dry clothes in).

We've only lived in the property for 6 months and for a third of that time we've been living with mould. The paint is bubbling and peeling/flaking off the walls, there's cracks in the interior wall (like right in the corner) and it's a darker shade than the rest of the wall paint.

Is there's an obvious sign to say it's penetrating damp or condensation?

Thanks in advance!

2 Answers from MyBuilder Damp Proofing Specialists

You should have it checked really. It would be simple to assume cause but visual inspection is needed.
P I v systems are available at a fairly low cost to eradicate condensation issues and attack by aspergillus mound but again full inspection will give you a clear picture.

2017-02-05T17:20:02+00:00

Answered 5th Feb 2017

Anything with black mould this is condensation, it's sounds outright that you have bad ventilation through out the property and no Insolation, I would recommend a condensation condenser, this it a ventilation system fitted in the loft and recycles the air through the house, condensation in normally high in a highly occupied house i.e. Students so these are normally fitted there, but also a great benefit to cold houses or houses without Insolation can be fitted with them, or an other system is Called a heat recovery system, the both base on the same bases,
Cost wish they're from £400 fitted,
Penetrating damp, this is high spots of water damp patches high and in various places on wall (this is not condensation) this is normal cause by blown external render, or if at low skirting area that can be raising damp and that is a failing dpc.
I hope this helps.

2017-02-05T17:20:02+00:00

Answered 5th Feb 2017

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