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How much for new Damp Proof Course.
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# 1
Bluefusion
Old 08-09-2006, 8:12 AM
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Default How much for new Damp Proof Course.

We have a three bed 1930's semi house we are looking at buying and have been advised that the house needs new Damp Proof Course.

Can anyone give me a rough idea what kind of figure we may be talking about here?
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# 2
TJ27
Old 08-09-2006, 11:04 AM
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The injection of the DPC itself isn't the difficult or expensive bit. It's the hacking off of plaster/render and all the decoration and mess. I have exactly the same sort of house as this one probably.

You have to hack off plaster to a height of about one metre. It will probably have walls plastered with black mortar. It's easy to get off but will make a huge mess of the whole house. It gets everywhere. You need to make sure that you completely seal up any areas you want to keep clean.

Then the DPC is injected, then you have to replaster, then you have to redecorate. Of course you might be doing this anyway before you move in.

As I was able to do most of this work myself on my house, I was able to install a DPC for about 500 quid. However if you get a builder in it will probably cost you a few grand. To be honest I'm a little out of touch with prices though and much will depend upon where you live and how big the house is. I'm not sure, but 3k perhaps?

Oh, and it pays to be slightly cautions when people tell you a new DPC is needed for the whole house. I did a building degree a few years ago and have been surveying for about ten years. Rising damp is not as prevalent as some people might like you to think it is. There are plenty of other reasons why walls might be a bit damp. If it's been unoccupied for a while, with no heating on and no windows open then of course the walls will be damp, but it might not be rising.
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# 3
Bluefusion
Old 08-09-2006, 4:25 PM
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Having looked in to this a little more, The whole house has the original slate DPC which is at the end of its life and needs replace as damp is coming through. Also we have been told the kitchen floor which is solid concrete is very damp and needs digging out and a DPC membrance laid and then recornceted over.

I have rang a local firm and they have said at the worst we are looking at £10k :-( but it should be less. They will be able to give us a more detailed cost on inspection. Other firms I rang will not quote or even give me a rough guide on the phone so at the moment I only have the 10k figure to go by!
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# 4
TJ27
Old 08-09-2006, 5:11 PM
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Digging up an relaying a concrete floor is a fairly easy job and the material cost is quite low. However there's a fair bit of donkey work involved. Sounds like a lot of money but like I say, I'm a little bit out of touch regarding prices.

I do wonder what it is that causes slate to come to the end of it's life. I've got some slate that has a sticker on the bottom saying, "this slate is five hundred million years old." So it survives underground for 500 million years and suddenly by being bedded into a brick wall for 75 it comes to the end of it's life! Still, I probably don't know enough about it. I believe that the efficiency of slate does reduce with time. It's a little bit unusual to have a slate DPC in a 30's house. I think in most areas they were using butuminous DPC's by then.

There are various pricing books for building works which will give you a rough idea of costs. One is called "SPONS" but it might be a bit difficult for the layman to understand I'm afraid. There are others though and some may be simpler to read. They will give a price per unit measure for various jobs. So you should be able to find a typical cost per square metre for a concrete floor. There are lots of variables even for such a simple job, but it'll give you an idea. You should get a price per linear metre for a new DPC too.

On the other hand jobbing builders will charge whatever they can get away with and some might have difficulty reading page three, let alone a price book.

(Only joking, if any builders are reading this!!)
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# 5
clutton
Old 10-09-2006, 1:09 AM
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£10k !!!!! is he having a laugh !! First thing i would do, is check the cheaper options first, check all the rainwater goods, are they effectively draining all rain water away from all brick walls ? are your airbricks fully exposed and working ? check the pointing, check window sills, for cracks, check if the windows open and that the damp is not been caused by condensation, check for internal water pipe leaks. etc etc. Having said all that - Lenders seem to have become obsessed with certificates. Like TJ, I personally think there is very little rising damp, but you may well be forced into having a DPC installed. Damp Firms will ALWAYS tell you that you need more work than is usually necessary, so get 2-3 companies in to quote, and play them off against each other.

IF you have to have the floor dug up, and plaster hacked off the walls, you can remove the plaster ourselves and hire a skip, but, it is VERY hard work. Having done this several times, please dont live there while you are doing it, its really vicious dust-wise, and most unhealthy, not to mention the toxic chemicals which are then pumped into your walls and which need airing for several days afterwards. They say these are not harmful, but, ....... i don't believe 'em !

I would have guessed £2-3k myself, but if you are in the south east, this may be more. i had a 2 bed terrace done this year for £1800.

Last edited by clutton; 10-09-2006 at 1:12 AM.
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# 6
Debt_Free_Chick
Old 10-09-2006, 9:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bluefusion
We have a three bed 1930's semi house we are looking at buying and have been advised that the house needs new Damp Proof Course.

Can anyone give me a rough idea what kind of figure we may be talking about here?
If you contact any firm that sells DPC, they will say that you need a new DPC ... hhhhmmmmmm I wonder why? :confused:

I think you are far better off spending a couple of hundred quid with a buildings surveyor who knows his stuff and let him tell you what needs to be done. He will probably also put you in touch with the right people to do the job.

Simply injecting modern DPC treatment into an older property is not the only remedy - and might not be the right one. This article (about damp proofing in period properties) could be useful. You can search for a local surveyor, including those who specialise in particular areas, here

HTH
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# 7
Jakilu
Old 25-08-2010, 11:39 AM
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These posts are a bit old. Can anybody give me some more up to date cost advice. I am buying a 1946 semi and the home buyers report has found the exterior and interior walls are damp and recommends getting a new chemical injected damp proof course. The floor is also suffering from damp - this can be rectified by more air bricks etc. but if the floors have been damp they may have rotted and so it may involve new floors and additional insulation. Any ideas of how much this will cost?

How much does rewiring cost these days? It hasn't been tested but the house was built in 1946 and if it hasn't been tested recently it suggests it hasn't been rewired.

Any advice, help much appreciated..
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# 8
anselld
Old 25-08-2010, 12:40 PM
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Just had about 10 metres length of walls done for £1500 (don't know how good this is though).

Check other possible causes first - rainwater, DPC bridging, cavity bridging, etc.

Check each section of wall sepaerately with a meter - you might not need everything done, just the areas where it has deteriorated. High readings up to a height of approx 1m then decreasing would indicate rising damp.

If suspended floor consider additional airbricks (circa £30 each fitted).
If wooden floor check also for rot/decay where joists meet wall ( I had most of my kitchen flood replaced - £270 fitted).

Last edited by anselld; 25-08-2010 at 12:42 PM.
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# 9
Kaaaaarl
Old 25-08-2010, 12:53 PM
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My Dad does it and he charges £100 a metre as advised because he offers a 30 year guarantee, it isnt cheap.
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# 10
Riq
Old 25-08-2010, 1:04 PM
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I know a guy who will do the damp coursing only for £500 on a 3 bed house, the real art is the plastering afterwards. That is where the majority of the cost is.
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# 11
Bricks
Old 02-09-2010, 5:28 PM
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People, don't spend money on injected damp proof courses! They are almost universally ineffective and in some cases can make problems worse. The whole notion of "rising damp" is largely a myth, invented by the people that want to sell you their chemical treatments.

The money should be spent getting a surveyor who does not have an interest in selling you something to ascertain the cause of the damp and the best solution. It's likely that condensation is the issue.

Google "rising damp myth" and look at the link from "askjeff"
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# 12
Toptenor
Old 16-11-2010, 8:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bluefusion View Post
Having looked in to this a little more, The whole house has the original slate DPC which is at the end of its life !
That sounds like a chemical salesman's quote. Did he say that?

I have just bought a three bedroomed house built in 1938. Its in Scotland and I am in Yorkshire. ( I am going up on Sunday)
The construction of the building is a 9 inch solid wall with external rough casting (harling). This is a traditional Scottish method. The bricks are softer than the local ones here in the old houses which are hard as nails and well glazed which is what was used to build our house here. Solid walls ( no cavity) no external coating and no dampness at all!
The rough casting is about an inch thick with small stones which is cast on wet. There's no sign of deterioration. These houses were built to last! There is a DPC.
Dampness has been detected, and a survey carried out by a timber restoration company. A chemical DPC has been quoted for £3400+vat. Covers floorboard renewal to three rooms and plaster 1M high to two rooms. Visqueen to be laid in solum, which is said to ve very damp. Also not mentioned. Soil comes right up to DPC level.
Would these last two items not explain the dampness? Condensation in the solum? All problems on north wall? Long grass in front of vents? Ground slopes down towards house?
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# 13
Radsteral
Old 16-11-2010, 11:00 PM
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between 60 and 90 pounds per metre linear we charge here in south of london though, before any work you need to look at the obvious ones... failed guttering, little trees and green around the walls, etc.
chemical damproofing is not usseless..though it needs to be done properly and many things to be taken into account , not just inject and render and go
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# 14
Bricks
Old 17-11-2010, 12:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Radsteral View Post
between 60 and 90 pounds per metre linear we charge here in south of london though, before any work you need to look at the obvious ones... failed guttering, little trees and green around the walls, etc.
chemical damproofing is not usseless..though it needs to be done properly and many things to be taken into account , not just inject and render and go
What does a chemical DPC actually do, in your opinion? Do you believe that "rising damp" actually exists as a phenomenon in masonry walls?
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# 15
denbo007
Old 26-11-2010, 6:21 PM
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Hi everyone
I am interested to read all this info about DPC but first I must say that installing this for some years, I would guarantee it do’s work, if installed right?
I worked in the Nottinghamshire area for some years but finished due to lack of business. What I couldn’t understand was that when I gave a quote sometimes half the price of other companies, people went for the higher priced quote? Don’t know why same chemicals, same guarantee, and a free 3month inspection. I am considering starting again with my son (who can’t find work) to see if there is still a market. So remember just because someone doesn’t turn up in a brand new shinny van doesn’t mean you’re getting ripped off? Keep a look out on this site giftsgalaw where I will start to advertise. PS make sure you get a 20 or 30yr guarantee from the manufacturer, I knew a company who even made these up, and the plaster doesn’t always need to come off, that depends how bad it is so don’t get ripped off with that one either. Hope this helps you

Last edited by denbo007; 05-12-2010 at 2:13 PM.
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# 16
Toptenor
Old 13-12-2010, 7:10 PM
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The problem with some companies who install chemical damp proof courses is either their surveyors are not capable of identifying rising damp or they are downright dishonest and say one is necessary when its not.
Its not enough to stick a moisture meter against the wall, see the red lights shining and conclude that there is rising damp.
I have recently been told I needed a damp proof course when clearly there were a number of problems which have now been fixed satisfactorily. These were: Soil piled against outside wall (previous owner), air bricks blocked, pitch, sealing sub-soil in solum broken, allowing air in solum to be moisture laden and thus cause condensation on bricks above DPC and joists.
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# 17
Milliewilly
Old 14-12-2010, 9:02 AM
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I had an independent survey on my last house. The surveyor said the most expensive job he had ever seen in his 20 years was £5K.
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# 18
Bricks
Old 14-12-2010, 4:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toptenor View Post
The problem with some companies who install chemical damp proof courses is either their surveyors are not capable of identifying rising damp or they are downright dishonest and say one is necessary when its not.
Its not enough to stick a moisture meter against the wall, see the red lights shining and conclude that there is rising damp.
I have recently been told I needed a damp proof course when clearly there were a number of problems which have now been fixed satisfactorily. These were: Soil piled against outside wall (previous owner), air bricks blocked, pitch, sealing sub-soil in solum broken, allowing air in solum to be moisture laden and thus cause condensation on bricks above DPC and joists.
In what circumstances would a chemical DPC be the solution?
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# 19
David Aldred
Old 14-12-2010, 5:43 PM
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Smile In what circumstances is a chemical dpc the solution

Hi,
The function of a chemical damp proof course (dpc) is solely to control moisture rising up through the wall by capillarity. Due to the limitations of the chemical dpc system there is usually a reliance upon the associated re-plastering to hold back a certain amount of moisture that may continue to rise up the wall once the chemical dpc is installed and also for this plaster to hold back ground salts that may be present within the lower areas of the wall that had previously suffered rising dampness.

It is not the function of the chemical damp proof course to address other moisture sources such as condensation or penetrating dampness.

The existing dpc the house was built with may itself be affective but dampness / degrading plaster appear to the lower parts of the wall for a number of reasons other than the dpc breaking down. Examples of this may be debris within the cavity of external walls bridging the dpc or dampness emerging at gaps between floors and walls.

A Chartered Building Surveyor (RICS) may be familiar with general principles of dampness and associated problems but they are not usually a specialist in these subjects unless they have undertaken additional training. A specialist surveyor in dampness and timber problems should be CSRT or CTIS / CRDS qualified. A list of suitably qualified persons may be found upon the Property Care Association (PCA) website be they a contractor or independent Freelance / Consultant surveyor. Hope this helps, kindest regards, David Aldred Independent damp and timber surveyor.

Last edited by David Aldred; 14-12-2010 at 5:48 PM.
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# 20
Bricks
Old 14-12-2010, 10:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Aldred View Post
Hi,
The function of a chemical damp proof course (dpc) is solely to control moisture rising up through the wall by capillarity.
But do you believe this is a real effect? It seems there is not really any evidence that moisture travels up through masonry walls by capillary action; not far enough to be an issue at least.

But would be interested to see anything that counters this. I know DPCs are required by building regs, but still, there seems to be little to show that it's a problem that really exists.

see here -

http://www.askjeff.co.uk/rising_damp.html

or here

http://www.architectsjournal.co.uk/n...204095.article

Quote:
Stephen Boniface, former chairman of the construction arm of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), has told the institute’s 40,000 members that ‘true rising damp’ is a myth and chemically injected damp-proof courses (DPC) are ‘a complete waste of money’.

In response, the RICS has put the term ‘rising damp’ in inverted commas in its latest factsheet – according to Boniface, as a ‘non-subtle hint’ to its members.

‘The most likely causes of damp are moisture penetration and, most commonly, condensation,’ said Boniface in an interview with NBS Learning Channels (click here to view).

In response, Elaine Blackett-Ord, chair of the Register of Architects Accredited in Building Conservation, has also spoken out against rising damp, saying it was as rare as ‘rocking-horse shit’.

Blackett-Ord said:‘’This self-perpetuating industry is believed to be worth over £200 million per year.’

’Not only are chemically injected DPCs a waste of time, they are ineffective and grossly expensive. [Installing] damaging impermeable cement based internal renders…serve simply to conceal the problem in the wall behind. For most historic buildings this is extremely damaging and irreversible.’

Jeff Howell, a qualified bricklayer and author of The Rising Damp Myth (2008) said trials in the laboratory confirm the falsehood.

‘If you build a brick pillar and stand it in a tray of water, the bricks in the water will get wet, but the water doesn’t rise by capillary action,’ said Howell. ‘Cement-based and most lime-based mortars will not
allow water to go through.’
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