3 Signs You May Have Salt Damp

Salt damp is a type of rising damp. It tends to be prevalent in regions which have higher levels of salt deposits in the ground. What are the signs that you might have a salt damp problem?

1. Water Staining

One of the first signs that you have a damp problem is water staining on walls. This can happen inside or outside your home; however, it may be more obvious on interior walls where it shows through paint and wallpaper more easily.

So, for example, you might see brown patches on a wallpapered wall. It looks like the wall has got wet and then dried off again. This is a sign that damp has spread up the wall and come on to the surface. As the damp goes through a drying cycle, it can leave a dirty stain.

In some cases, the wall may feel dry when you touch a stained area. Or, it may feel damp or cold to the touch.

2. Surface Damage

It can take rising damp a while to cause damage over and above surface staining. By the time you get to this stage, both interior and exterior walls may start to break down.

For example, the skirting boards on an interior wall may start to rot if they are damp for long periods. Plaster and paint on the walls may start to break down as the damp on the inside of the wall affects them from behind. You may see bubbles, blisters or flaky patches start to appear.

Exterior walls can have the same problems if they are coated or painted. If you have plain brickwork on these walls, then you may notice that mortar between lower bricks is coming loose or even falling out. The surfaces of bricks may start to crumble. As the damage gets worse, the surfaces may flake when you rub your hand along the bricks.

3. Signs of Salt

While water damage and surface damage can be a sign of general damp, you can usually see if you have a salt problem by looking at the wall. If the damp carries a lot of salt with it, then the salt will stay on a wall after the water recedes or dries off.

So, you may see salt crusts on the wall. These may look rough or may look like a furred coating. Or, you may see white tidemarks on the wall.

If you think that you may have a salt damp problem, then it's important to have things checked out. If you do have this kind of rising damp, then you want to catch it quickly and treat it before it causes more costly internal damage. To find out more, arrange a salt damp inspection.