What is Penetrating Damp?

Penetrating damp is a common issue in properties and refers to the unwanted infiltration of moisture through the exterior walls and into the internal spaces of a building. Unlike rising damp, which typically originates from the ground up, penetrating damp occurs due to water penetrating the walls from external sources. This moisture can cause a range of problems, including damp patches, stained walls, and even structural damage if left unaddressed.

Common Causes of Penetrating Damp

Several factors can contribute to the occurrence of penetrating damp:

Damaged or poorly maintained roofs are a significant source of penetrating damp. Missing or broken roof tiles, damaged flashing, or blocked gutters can allow rainwater to seep into the building.

Cracks or defects in the exterior walls can provide pathways for rainwater to enter the property. Over time, exposure to harsh weather conditions can worsen these defects.

Blocked or damaged drainage systems, such as downspouts and drains, can lead to water accumulating around the exterior walls, eventually finding its way inside.

Gaps around windows, doors, or other building openings that are not properly sealed can allow rainwater to enter. Poorly sealed joints and inadequate window or door frames are common culprits.

Poorly designed or constructed extensions, porches, or wall features can create areas where water ingress is more likely, leading to penetrating damp.

Severe weather events, such as heavy rain and wind-driven rain, can exacerbate existing vulnerabilities in a building’s external envelope, increasing the risk of moisture infiltration.

Identifying and addressing the specific cause of penetrating damp is crucial to preventing further damage and maintaining the integrity of the property. Effective repairs, proper maintenance, and protective measures can help mitigate the risks associated with penetrating damp and keep your property dry and secure.

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