Rising Damp

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Before the mid nineteenth century, physical damp proof courses (DPCʼs) were very rare. Many solid walled structures continued to be built without them well into the twentieth century.

Early DPCʼs consisted of a course of slate built into the base of the wall. Later, a double course of engineering bricks or a layer of bitumen was used to resist rising moisture. DPCʼs became mandatory under the Public Health Act of 1875. But millions of old houses continue to exist without DPCʼs and have no problem.

Only when damp becomes excessive and permanent enough to cause decay do problems start in old houses.

Nowadays house builders call on a multitude of products that provide a totally waterproof materials to keep damp at bay. The original builders of old houses was not so lucky as this type of material was both unaffordable and not universally available. The challenge was to provide a good structure built out of materials readily available in such a way that the property spent more time dry than they did wet.

They did this very successfully by incorporating materials and systems that allowed the building to “moisture manage”. When this balance is interrupted by alterations; modernisation; repair using incorrect building materials, problems can arise in the future.

The damp problem may be rising damp; penetrating damp; surface condensation; interstitial condensation or a myriad of combinations of each. Once you identify the true cause, the solution may not be what you expect.

Our Services

JW Surveys carry out the following surveys and reports within the South East of England:

  • Independent Damp & Timber Surveys and Reports
  • Damp & Timber Pre-Purchase Surveys
  • Structural Waterproofing Reports
  • Structural Waterproofing Design to BS8102:2009
  • 7 Days A Week subject to availability

These are all carried out by our Independent Damp and Timber Surveyor who is approved by The Property Care Association.

PCA Membership

JW Surveys are members of Property Care Association




  • Timber & Damp Surveys from £195
  • Condensation & Mould Surveys from £195 (lab analyses to identify mould types can be undertaken at additional cost)
  • CPR part 35 Compliant Report £POA
  • Rates for commercial properties are available upon request

Click here to find out more about what to expect.