Tackling the Rising Damp

I’ve started hacking off the plaster in the kitchen. I did this little section in 10 mins 11.30pm last night and 10 mins before work this morn. It should fall off quicker when I can make a noise.

Removing Plaster

My builder recommended getting prices from the damp specialist company to do the work minus replastering in the kitchen, as the whole kitchen will be replastered. He thought it could save me a couple of hundred pounds.

The damp specialist company break down their work into two parts.

  • Part one – installation of chemical damp proof course – £446.40
  • Part two – removing and reinstating plaster – £489.60

I’ll use them for part one.

I’ll hack off as most of the plaster myself – i.e. all the loose damp stuff. I’ll leave the solid plaster for my builder.

I’m guessing even after the cost for his extra labour, I’ll be in for a saving of £200-300.


Week 5 Update, better late than never.

Ok, so bedroom 2 is finished, except the skirtings, which are staying as they are for now – my lodger has now moved his belongings in.

Finished except skirting

The lounge has been filled and primed once (excluding chimney breast). It shouldn’t need skimming, apart from around 1 or 2 of the door frames. The chimney’s the worst, but I’ll paste up textured wallpaper here. The walls need filling and priming a couple of times more. And I need the rising damp rectified along one corner of the room.

The edge connecting the walls and ceiling is pretty bad, but I’ll be putting up coving and this will disguise it. There coving in the first reception room hasn’t been ripped out and that’s staying.

Lounge Montage

I have my sofa in now, makes it harder to work in there, but gives me somewhere to sit. Yes, I have a bit of time for relaxing now (until builders have been and gone).

Camping out – the lounge

My temporary kitchen means I’ve had some decent meals this week. It’s only really washing up that is an inconvenience (but isn’t it always… bring on dishwasher instalation!)

Temporary Kitchen

One Month Later…

Well, it’s a month today since I picked up the keys. The house looks totally different but still lots to do. This is what has been done so far:

  • stripped wallpaper from lounge, kitchen, hallway and bedroom 2
  • removed ceiling tiles from lounge, kitchen and hallway
  • scraped, chipped and steamed tile glue from lounge and hallway ceiling
  • sanded lounge & hallway ceilings
  • knocked off plaster from kitchen ceiling
  • taken down all sliding doors downstairs
  • washed hallway
  • washed, prepared and painted bedroom 2 walls (except chimney breast and window surround)
  • painted bedroom 2 ceiling
  • filled bedroom 2 door and painted it
  • sanded, primed and painted wardrobe
  • started washing lounge
  • plus moved 1/4 of belongings over from rented house

Not bad, considering I’ve only had evenings and weekends to work on the house and some evenings I’ve worked late and had other commitments.

Week 4 Update

Well bedroom 2 had my attention this week and it’s almost finished. It’s all painted apart from the chimney and window surround, these will be done Tues. Then it’s time to give the lounge carpet a thorough steam clean and lay this in the bedroom.

black satin door

Black Wardrobe

Progress in pictures…

Bedroom 2 progress

There’s now one week before I need to be fully moved in. I have a couple of days booked off work. As well as finishing off bedroom 2 I’ll wash the living room walls this week too. Then it’s waiting for the rising damp to be sorted before painting the walls.

I’m also seriously thinking about skimming the hall walls. I spent hours washing the walls, but there are some four parts of the wall where two doors used to be that will never look good unless skimmed and the walls are pretty bad generally… so realistically it makes sense re-skimming. So stopped work on the hall for now.

Kitchen progress – Stripping Back To It’s Shell (Says Shell)

Kitchen gets ripped apart

So, we ripped out the units. Leaving the sink for now. Took out the school/office style suspended ceiling and found more polystyrene tiles! These came down too. The tile glue came off more easily than in the lounge… but looks like we’re going to be boarding the ceiling and getting that skimmed at a later date.

Stripped off the wallpaper – can you see how thick the top layer is!? Once that was off the rest came off quite easily with the steamer… well apart from on the wall joining the living room – that was tough. Probably because it’s the only dry wall in the kitchen!

Quarry Tiles

Dad stripping back to Quarry Tiles, so new flooring with Damp Proof Membrane can be laid

The floor is quarry tiles so no waterproof membrane, so a new floor will be laid on top of this. Far cheaper and quicker than digging the whole floor up, and the tiles are still stuck solid, so it will work just fine. The rising damp will be sorted and the whole room will be re-plastered but not before the new pipes for the new boiler and rads are in and the new electrics (ovens have to be on separate circuit and there’s only 2 sockets in the kitchen!). Oh yeah, and the wall at the end needs to be removed first, making a HUGE kitchen diner 🙂