Damp proof by solving the root cause of damp during damp survey. Once stopped at source, damp will not return.
Note: We are taking time out until October to renovate a property damaged by the previous owner’s inappropriate damp proofing treatment.
Why damp survey? book
Almost all damp London houses have been chemically damp proofed. If damp proofing chemicals worked there would be no need for damp surveys (and insufficient business for chemical damp proofers), see example: https://dampsurveys.com/example_detailed_report/ .
Look at the base of external walls to see if there’s disruption to bricks or render, such as a line of penny sized dots on or between successive bricks, often more visible at the rear of house. This is a sign of past chemical damp proofing AKA misdiagnosed Rising Damp Treatment.
- You can’t blame rising damp contractors recommending rising damp treatment, if that is how they make a living.
- You can’t blame the PCA (Property Care Association – the damp proofing Trade Body) their members are mainly Rising Damp proofers
- Even “Independent/Freelance Surveyor/Consultant with PCA membership” can make most of their profit from Rising Damp and
- Some damp surveyors find it hard to trace moisture back to its source. It is often easier to say the problem looks like rising damp, so let’s hide a damp patch with chemicals.
Problem – PCA is the only widely recognised qualification
The PCA “Certificated Surveyor of Dampness in Buildings” is the only recognised damp survey qualification, by RICS, insurers and mortgage lenders. But
- But qualifying as a Certificated Surveyor of Dampness in Buildings only takes 1 week,
- without evidence or
- hand-on experience and
- misses a key component, differentiating sources of damp with rising damp like symptoms, such:
- excess vapour,
- hygroscopic salts and
Solution – qualification through experience
Over 2,000 damp issues solved, using a root cause approach to fixing damp without injecting chemicals. £2.5Million saved last year chemical free, £10,000 on average per damp survey in London – see reviews and guarantees.
- Surveys take 1 to 1.5hours. Occasionally we will need to monitor dampness or atmospheric humidity.
- It is often useful to see the other side of a damp wall, such as in a neighbour’s property.
- Most causes of damp are easy and quick to fix, once the root cause is correctly identified.
- This is why most damp issues are misdiagnosed or over engineered by contractors.
See example report
- Repairs depend on time, experience and accessibility and should be seen as a bonus not a given.
- We never charge for repairs. We don’t provide, install or replace equipment.
- Independence and eliminating conflicts of interest, is a key aspect of the service.
- The fee is a fixed rate of £400 for the survey and standard PDF report (sent by email).
- We send an invoice a few days in advance confirming the appointment time, with payment details.
- The fee is paid in advance in the form of a refundable deposit.
Rising damp guarantee
- We will repay the full fee, no questions asked, if we find rising damp is the root cause. It is that rare in London.
- We would also like to be involved in ongoing monitoring, as data is important for the scientific study of this rare and illusive phenomena.
- We have two fee refunded cases we are currently studying, both appear to be linked to effects in street-side surface water drains (penetrating damp not rising damp).
- We want you to be satisfied so that you would like to write an informative review for future clients.
- The survey and report comes with a satisfaction guarantee.
- If you are unhappy with the service, just tell us within two weeks of receiving the survey report and we will repay the fee in full, within two weeks of being informed.
What is a damp survey cost?
Some rising damp proofing contractors make their surveys FREE, or charge and offer a refund from the profit they make from treatment.
So how do contractors profit?
Some say it is by overstating the problem and therefore recommending a more disruptive and more expensive remedy than required.
What would you do if you were a contractor offering a low cost survey?
Damp from hygroscopic salts is good example
Damp caused by hygroscopic damp is a good case in point. This is where water is bounded by salts, mainly calcium nitrate from chimney breasts. These salts are benign but an aesthetic concern, acting more like grease stains rather than damp.
But contractors and surveyors constantly misdiagnosed them as being caused by rising damp. The end result is damage to a wall, that does not necessarily fix the problem. The solution is simply to block these salts with an oil based primer.
Dry rot is another example
The only effective solution for Dry rot is to identify and eliminate the root cause of damp, yet many recommend a toxic box, a useless, expensive and destructive procedure.
What differentiates Damp Surveys Ltd?
We tend to solve the more complex London type damp problems;
- Independent from contractors. Our only income is from Damp and Timber Surveys.
- Extensive survey. Most surveys take 1 to 2 hours. We look at damp walls from every angle and if there are any doubts, will ask to see the neighbour’s side of the wall. After all rising damp rises evenly on both side of the walls.
- We take a holistic approach, tracing damp back to it’s root cause.
- Suitable qualifications with the RICS and PCA (Property Care Association).
- Satisfied customers, see Which! reviews: https://trustedtraders.which.co.uk/businesses/damp-surveys-ltd/#reviews and
CheckaTrade reviews: https://www.checkatrade.com/trades/DampSurveysLtd
- Simon is a qualified RICS expert witness.
- We charge a fixed survey fee of £400 (no VAT payable).
Damp proofing against rising damp, condensation, penetrating damp and leaking pipes is almost always free to solve.
Damp Surveyor Qualifications
There are really only two forms of qualification for damp survey;
- A Certificated Surveyor of Dampness in Building; after passing written and orals exams by the Property Care Association (a trade body for the damp Proofing industry).
- By relevant experience evidenced by membership of the Institute of Specialist Surveyors and Engineers.
Robert Simon Hichens has both qualifications.
Your peace of mind is our goal. For you to be satisfied that the property will be properly protected against damp now and into the future, not just a short term fix.