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How Long Does a Damp-Proofing Course Last?

Date Posted 27 March 2024

If you are a homeowner or have investment properties, you’ll want to protect your assets from anything that could cause harm or reduce the value of your property. A savvy homeowner knows that damp proofing is necessary when it comes to ensuring the long-term value and integrity of your home. Which begets the question, how long does damp proofing last?

How Long Does Damp Proofing Last?

Damp proofing is a way of future proofing your home or investment property against water damage that can occur from rising damp or other water ingress. That is, where excess groundwater enters the building through capillary action and rises through the walls. How long does damp proofing last? The good news is that damp proofing can last for 20 to 30 years or more when done well.

Modern buildings have a damp-proof course included as part of the building process. This is a physical barrier within the building walls that prevents water ingress. Older buildings may not have a damp-proof course and require damp proofing to be retrofitted if damp is found to be an issue. Likewise, if a building fitted with a damp-proof course has had the course damaged in some way, it will also need to be replaced and remedial work conducted to address the damp.

To answer the question how long does damp proofing last, we need to consider the following factors that can affect the longevity of damp proofing.

  1. Correct assessment of your property needs. A qualified and PCA (Property Care Association) approved surveyor such as the team at CS Damp Proofing, will be able to survey and assess your property to determine firstly if a damp-proof course is in place, and if so whether it has been compromised. Finally, they’ll determine if the issue is rising damp or another form of damp. To treat the problem effectively and have a reliable and long-lasting damp-proofing solution, you first must know what needs treating.
  2. The type and quality of damp proofing used. Once you have an accurate assessment of what the building needs in terms of damp management, you’ll be able to ensure that the best type of damp proofing is used in the building. This may depend on the state of the building, excessive rainfall or humidity, and soil porosity. The damp proofing could be physical such as damp-proof membrane, chemical such as damp-proof paint, injected such as damp-proofing creams, or electro-osmosis, which creates an electrical barrier to stop the capillary action of the water ingress.

Using the correct option for your property and choosing quality products are essential for long-term efficacy of your building’s damp proofing. A qualified and experienced damp-proofing team can guide you through what your property requires.

  1. Correct installation and maintenance of the damp proofing. One of the greatest factors impacting how long does a damp proof course last, is correct installation. You need to be sure that this foundational piece of your home’s damp proofing is done correctly.

While a damp-proof course can be replaced and/or retrofitted, it may involve removing and replacing all the bricks at the level of the damp-proof course to insert the damp-proof course. This is in addition to treating any walls that have been damaged by water ingress.

How much better to know you have a qualified and experienced damp proofing team on the job ensuring the membrane is laid correctly the first time with appropriate overlap and no damage to the membrane.

How Long is Damp Proofing Guaranteed for?

We already know that damp proofing can last decades, but how long is it guaranteed for? Your contractor could give you a guarantee for 30 years, and some do, but what does that offer you if a few years down the track the company for whatever reason no longer exists?

Many homeowners have found themselves seeking to action a guarantee only to discover the company has failed and the guarantee is effectively useless.

In addition to choosing damp proofing professionals who you can trust to do quality work, you will also want to know that work is guaranteed, not just by the company, but insurance backed. Guarantee Protection Insurance (GPI) covers the work for ten or up to 20 years if the contactor disappears for any reason.

How Long Does Damp Proof Membrane Last?

As mentioned earlier, damp proofing can protect your home from water ingress for 30 or more years. The membrane is non-permeable, often a high-density polyethylene (HDPE) that creates a barrier to any ground water entering the walls. If the damp-proof membrane becomes ineffective, it is likely due to low quality materials (such as not meeting the UK requirements of 1,200 gauge damp proofing membrane) or to the membrane not being laid correctly. A Property Care Association (PCA) qualified surveyor and approved team such as CS Damp proofing can help ensure that you get the protection from your damp-proof membrane you deserve.

How Long Does Damp Proof Paint Last?

Damp-proof paint can last around five years, but that doesn’t necessarily answer the question how long does damp proofing last. That is because paint, even damp proofing paint can mask a problem rather than solving it. In which case using the paint may not be the same as damp proofing your home. Damp proofing paint can be a good addition to your home damp prevention, but not as a solution to existing damp from water ingress. Additionally, the wall surfaces will need to be properly prepared to take the paint to get a good outcome.

Looking for Professional Advice for Damp Proofing Your Home?

To ensure your home is protected from damage caused by damp, contact the professional team at CS Damp Proofing today for expert guidance, PCA approved surveyors, and peace of mind for your most valuable asset.