This cold damp corner is under repeated attack from both external and internal weather. What looked like moisture getting in turned out to be moisture trying to get out. Remediation reinstates the moisture buffering capacity using Hemp Lime.
The external typography, local weather and cutting corners during the original construction has made this a cold corner. This end of terrace doesn’t follow the building line of the street, the prevailing wind is funnelled onto the north-west corner.
Repeated attempts have been made with external render coats to stop moisture getting in. It seems plausible that water must be getting in through the cracks in the render and a costly proposal to remove and re-render has been proscribed. Water penetration has been misdiagnosed
Without quoin stones running up the corner it is colder and less able to evaporate the moisture condensing on the inside. Meanwhile internally the limestone walls have been plastered with hydraulic mortar, breathable but very little capacity. Moisture vapour is passing through and then dropping out behind the vinyl paint, the low capacity lime plaster soon becomes saturated.
Removing the exterior cement render will be costly and complex, a pragmatic approach is to mitigate the problem internally with a Hygroscopic capacity. Inside, cement render, vinyl paint, PVA and ‘damp stopper’ is removed to rectify the damaged decoration. Internal doors will be operated to prevent moisture migrating from the kitchen and drying laundry internal will be reduced.
No specialist tools or equipment is required, just no cost and low-cost knowledge-led renovation.
Pegged out with ‘Dochans’ a true, flat level surface is reinstated more affordable casting with Hemp and lime.
Different thicknesses don’t cause moisture dropout problems unlike Gypsum plaster or Lime render.
The shuttering is quickly filled with the correct density of Hemp and Lime, the shuttering can be stuck off and moved up straight away.
Now we’re of the ground the boxes of Hemp and Lime are hung from the shuttering using ‘S’ shaped kitchen hooks, speeding installation and catching any overspill.
Tea break and time to step up a level.
Shuttering moves up quickly.
Approaching the top and problems are solved instinctively as a team.
Live risk assessment mitigates an improvised scaffold in preference to working on a ladder.
Working as a team momentum builds, problems are solved, knowledge is exchanged and with understanding comes cooperation.
The wall is completed in one sociable Saturday afternoon with friends and neighbours dropping in to have a go.
The following weekend with confidence instilled another cold spot is tacked this time single-handed.
Addressing the problematic areas that are repeatedly attacked by the storms of internal weather and tackling small areas in isolation is more manageable in a domestic household.
Baumit RK38 base coat, KG30 topcoat Lime plaster and finally wallpaper.
Hemp and Lime @£250/m3, 0.5m3, £125. Plaster base coat, top coat and mash @£12.50m2, 6m2, £75. Total £200
Decade of damp
Ben and Fern share their story, ten years of failed remediation put right in a couple of weekends.
The damp Victorian terrace, built on a budget, what went wrong and what made it worse? How a century of bad practice put right in a couple of weekends.
The steamy Hygroscopic bathroom, more than breathable, capacity counts, rapidly responding in layers, the wallpaper’s not for decoration.
The open plan Emancipated kitchen, wreaking havoc in every home, enter the Bi-folding doors and the reveals expose a concentration of moisture.
Every home has Cold spots under repeated attacked from internal weather, reduce storms and tackling a more manageable project in isolation.