Damp in a building is not a new problem with thousands of properties throughout the UK succumbing. Whilst damp can be caused by a variety of reasons, there is undeniably a correlation between the type, or origin, of damp and the age of the building.
For example, most buildings pre 1824, when Portland Cement came into use, would have been built using traditional building materials such as lime mortar and render. Lime is a breathable material that allows moisture to escape and evaporate. Originally the entire building would have been built and finished with breathable materials ensuring that they could effectively manage moisture.
Problems occur when traditional building materials and systems collide with modern materials and approaches. For example; If an impermeable coating is applied (i.e. a modern masonry paint or paint systems that suggest they will not need to be painted again) to an external wall and emulsion paint to the internal wall, it effectively creates a barrier to the moisture that is drawn up from the ground. This moisture then becomes trapped and that is when the damp problems begin.
In this instance, the most straightforward way to rectify the damp is therefore to remove the impermeable paint and coatings and replace them instead with a breathable paint such as a lime or clay paint. Any moisture that is drawn from the ground will then be able to dissipate and evaporate solving the damp issue.
There are different techniques to removing paint, some of which are more practicable than others depending on factors such as location. A prime consideration should be to preserve the substrate underneath the paint / coating, particularly on older properties where the soundness may be questionable. By applying a paint stripper rather than going in with some kind of blasting system you can ensure you only remove what you want to, without damage to the surface.
Different paints and coatings will require a different paint stripper to ensure effective results. The most suitable product for your project can be found on our Product Finder.