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Damp Diagnosis and Testing

Getting the right damp diagnosis

Brick-Tie Preservation don’t just install damp courses and treat problems caused by damp – first and foremost we’re specialists in damp diagnosis, because without finding the true cause, we can’t recommend the best solution!

We cover the entire Yorkshire area, including Leeds, Bradford, York, Sheffield and Harrogate, our priority is to ensure that the root of the issue is properly diagnosed – and our experience in the local area, plus our own in-house testing laboratory means that we have the knowledge and tools at our disposal to get it right!

Diagnosis cannot be made by merely inspecting the visual signs of damp – which is why we use high quality testing and analysis equipment. If you have a problem with damp and would like one of our specialists to visit you to conduct a diagnostic survey, please call us on Leeds 265 2752 York 566577 or Sheffield 224 5121 or email us via our contact page

 Damp survey – Leeds, Sheffield, York and surrounding areas

damp surveys may require thermal imaging

Thermal image showing a working anti condensation unit

Whilst many specialist damp companies offer free timber and damp surveys, you’ll find the small fee we charge is well worth it; you’ll see where that survey fee went by the care and trouble we take in getting to the truth. Free damp and timber surveys may lead to work which is not necessary or appropriate – as the saying goes, ‘you get what you pay for.’ Our surveyors are salaried staff and are not paid commission based on damp proofing sales. Good pay and conditions, along with great training are an incentive to produce accurate and honest damp diagnosis; there’s no bonus to be made by doing otherwise.

Our thorough and in-depth damp surveys can utilise a range of different diagnostic techniques including:

  • None destructive visual inspection with the aid of advanced damp meters by Protimeter and Flir.
  • Moisture profiling to compare with any visual evidence of damp
  • Humidity/temperature logging and analysis for mould and damp-proofing investigations
  • Salts analysis to establish salt contamination of plaster
  • Thermal imaging to find hidden damp problems
  • Gravimetric testing for hygroscopic moisture separation – accurate damp testing in our own lab in accordance with BRE 245 “Rising damp diagnosis and treatment”
  • Calibrated anemometers to check the effectivness of existing extraction fans
  • A range of sensors, computer models and protocols we’ve perfected over 3 decades in the business.
  • A deep knowledge of the current standards relating to ventilation, damp, insulation and air quality.

Our written reports meet or exceed the Property Care Association standards and a PCA survey certificate is available for home buyers too.

damp surveys in Yorkshire

Damp surveys may require electronic moisture meters

While we work on many homeowners houses, our specialists also provide independent damp surveys and services to commercial and heritage clients too. Our local, qualified surveyors cover Leeds, Bradford, Wakefield, York, Harrogate, Barnsley, Sheffield, Selby, Doncaster and any area within Yorkshire.

For further information on damp diagnosis and testing, or to book a damp survey, please contact us on Leeds 265 2752 York 566577 or Sheffield 224 5121 or email us via our contact page

 

 

Our own in-house damp diagnosis laboratory.

Damp surveys in Yorkshire to BRE 245 using BT Preservations lab oven

Damp surveys to BRE 245 require use of our lab oven for gravimetric testing of samples

The damp diagnosis laboratory is our single highest investment after training of staff, enabling a scientific approach to finding out the type and quantities of salts present in plaster and masonry. This is combined with our ability to accurately measure the exact distribution of water in walls and separate out that which is due to the effects of ground salts (if any). The technique is also valuable in checking roof repairs around chimneys – highlighting ‘free water’ due to continuing leaks and avoiding disputes arising due to residual moisture or moisture due to salt contamination.

This is so important because dampness problems cannot be solved without accurate specialist damp diagnosis – get the cause of the damp wrong and the solution will never work.

The laboratory includes equipment to measure samples to very high accuracy and two reactors to maintain samples at pre-defined relative humidities. These are used to replicate site conditions, so the samples stabilise at their ‘air dry’ condition. Where high hygroscopic moisture contents are found; salt damp, we can then identify the type of salts causing the problem. This is a useful aid to correct diagnosis of damp.

The laboratory is used for training purposes too. We are able to ‘proof’ test and ‘benchmark’ equipment, demonstrate fundamental concepts and  explore the science of damp in buildings together as a team. This reinforces our surveyors’ skills and challenges any incorrect pre-conceived ideas surveyors may have picked up over the years.

The laboratory is the only one of its type in Yorkshire, placing Brick-Tie Preservation amongst the elite of damp diagnotic services in the UK.

The video below was taken on a survey in Wakefield. It is an example of a reported Rising damp problem being investigated and proven to be a condensation issue using our damp diagnosis skills and equipment.

 

Is all this equipment really needed? Well, that depends on the situation. Often even the most advanced diagnostic methods will merely confirm findings, which were obtained using basic moisture meters and a good visual inspection; a surveyors skill and experience should not be underestimated; and cannot be made any better with ‘tools or toys’.  However, having these available helps us when things are not what they seem.

For further information on what is included in our standard and consultancy level damp surveys please contact us on Leeds 265 2752 York 566577 or Sheffield 224 5121 or email us via our contact page  You can obtain our damp diagnostic expertise from as little as £115.00. More advanced diagnostic testing is available as above, starting at £255.00 (cost excludes laboritory charges where gravimetrics and salts testing etc are required)

 

Our managing direvtor and senior surveyor, Bryan Hindle also provides lots of great technical articles for web visitors who want to learn about damp in more detail, such as:

 

Why is my house damp?

Rising Damp for beginners – how serious is a rising damp diagnosis

What is a Damp Survey and What is a Damp Report ?

Which type of ‘moisture meter’ is best for damp diagnosis – a quick and simple appraisal.

 

Leeds 265 2752 York 566577 or Sheffield 224 5121 or email us via our contact page

 

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