If you are running a server room or data centre, you have to keep the environment perfect at all times to avoid premature failure of your computing systems. You have to think about cooling, air quality and keeping humidity levels down. In places like here in the UK, this can be tricky to do, especially the moisture levels in the air. Without effective damp proofing, you could be looking at expensive repairs at best, and a complete failure of your systems at worst.
What Is Damp Proofing?
Damp proofing in building construction or damp proofing in residential construction refers to a type of insulation applied to concrete floors and building walls to keep excess moisture out of the interior areas. Dampness issues are among the common problems encountered in modern residences. They can occur due to various reasons such as leakage pipes in the roof, seepage through cracks in the foundation or any number of other reasons. It is important to know which situations present the greatest damp issues in a building. Once this has been determined, the damp proofing process can be recommended.
How Is It Done?
The first step to damp proofing in residential construction is to eliminate the standing water on the outside of the foundation walls by installing water resistant materials on the exterior wall and the skirting boards. One of the best solutions for this is a system of pre-finishing where the plaster is injected into a skirting board before it is added to the concrete walls. In many cases, the concrete skirting boards will be connected to a membrane attached to the exterior walls. The thickness of the membrane will depend on the amount of moisture that needs to be prevented from entering the concrete structure. The system of pre-finishing will help prevent moisture penetration through the walls and skirting boards while allowing the building occupants to remain dry during periods of high humidity.
The next stage of damp proofing in building construction is to paint the walls. The paint used will help to create an even and moisture-resistant surface that will prevent the growth of mold and mildew. Before the paint is applied, it is thoroughly washed with water to remove any soap scum that may be present. The paint will be applied to the exterior walls and skirting boards after this has been done. This will ensure that the surface is perfectly even from top to bottom. After the application of the paint, it will be thoroughly allowed to dry.
As soon as the walls have dried, they can be resealed to protect them from further water damage. It will also be important to remove any damaged sections of wall. Once the walls are sealed, the damp proofing material can be applied to the surface once again. The time it takes to do this will depend on the extent of the damage and the size of the area.
If it is found necessary to change the design of the existing home, it would be necessary to build another room around it in order to allow for the removal of the existing room and construction of the new one. However, building a room to accommodate an extra inhabitant could take around 100 man hours or longer. It is therefore important to weigh up the pros and cons of constructing a new room versus keeping the existing property intact. If construction takes longer than expected, it could be more costly in the long run due to increased labour costs.
Damp proofing is also beneficial for older homes. Newer homes are built with a concrete base which is made out of a mixture of gravel, sand and cement. These foundations are very well sealed against the elements but there is always a chance that the concrete slab could experience some form of water damage. Over time, the concrete will slowly warp due to moisture absorption and structural changes. Over time, this could result in buckling, cracking and other signs of possible moisture damage. By sealing the concrete slab at the time of its construction, the damp proofing will then prevent the negative effects associated with the aging of the foundation walls.