Dampproofing/slug removal in sunny (rainy) N Ireland

(7 Posts)
Fearofsluggies Wed 29-Apr-15 16:46:37

We have a small hundred-year-old terraced house in northern ireland. It has damp in the kitchen floor (there was a tiny extension to the tiny kitchen return at one point, just making it longer) and slugs that clearly live in the walls or underneath cabinets or come in at night, who knows, but they are there! Pauses to shudder

We want to replace the old shabby kitchen with an ikea one. Obviously this is the time to sort any damp treatment. Only problem is, I don't know what it is we should do and there are so many stories of crap ineffectual damp treatments!

We had a great guy come out and do a survey, say he could take the old kitchen out for us and treat the floor with a chemical membrane that would stop the damp coming up through the concrete. He said they could make good walls so no chinks for slugs to get in, and that there is no point doing chemical injections as they are a waste of time.

The only problem was he was supposed to do a couple of other jobs at the time like put an air brick in a blocked up chimney breast and repair a wee bit of mortar outside that was loose and making a tiny corner of the dining area damp. He was supposed to send me a quote for that while we waited for a bit to be able to afford the kitchen refit. But he totally disappeared! Avoided all my calls, texts etc, had to give up (this was about nine months ago)

My problem now is that I am ready to do the kitchen. This guy sounded very knowledgeable about damp, but I'm pissed off he was so unreliable - maybe those jobs were just too small on their own to be worth his while, but still rude to disappear.

However every other damp proofing contractor in Northern Ireland talks about chemical injection! In fairness, I think the house has already had it done in the past.

Is injection pointless? (presumably yes if damp in floor?) Does the chemical membrane sound right, is this totally toxic (small kids etc), has anyone else had similar problems (slug elimination methods welcome)? and finally, is there anyone in NI who's had some damp work done and can recommend a contractor!

Phew, a long one, sorry.

Fearofsluggies Thu 30-Apr-15 20:39:17

Bump! Someone else must have had a damp kitchen, no?

blueteapot Fri 01-May-15 07:29:35

Not helpful, we are also in NI but when we lived in Manchester we had slugs in our damp kitchen leaving slime trails everywhere at night, you have my sympathies sad if I hear of anyone having this done I'll post (Derry area) x

SASASI Fri 01-May-15 10:06:12

Would it be worth speaking to a builder to see if he can recommend someone? Or even check local newspaper for handy men & give them a call to see if they know someone / anything.

Fearofsluggies Fri 01-May-15 21:48:25

Thanks blue teapot, it is the worst! Evil slugs.

ShebaRabbit Fri 01-May-15 22:16:58

Good old Ireland, the wettest, dampest spot in Europe, no wonder half of us are riddled with arthritis smile

Do you know what kind of damp it is? rising-sounds too wet to be rising, leaky pipe/failed gutter somewhere. Before you spend money on treatments etc get a surveyor/structural engineer to do a proper survey and tell you what the cause of the damp is, it will probably cost you a couple of hundred quid but if its damp enough for slugs. Ring your Council Housing Dept 9doesnt matter that you're not a tenant)and ask if they have a list of approved surveyors, if they dont ask them who the council use for damp. He/She will need to take up the concrete somewhere to get a look, you really need to know whats under there causing it. When you know whats going on you can do up a spec and get quotes. I have learned never to ask a tradesman to diagnose a problem as they will all try to sell you the easiest/cheapest option for them
I'd hazard a guess at a leak or a failed gutter/drain somewhere in the terrace that is pooling under your floor. Beware of any tradesman who tells you he has a chemical membrane that can stop damp without treating the cause, nothing will stop water penetrating concrete. I think you had a lucky escape that he didn't call back.

Have you checked your drains and the outside wall where the damp is? what do they look like?

To do a proper, lasting job you need to stop the water coming in, or if its just condensation from lack of ventilation dry it out, treat or better yet replace the concrete and then put down a new damp proof course/physical membrane. Read as much as you can on different types of damp. I know how stressful it is getting stuff like this done as its such an expensive thing if it goes wrong.

mcsquigg Fri 01-May-15 22:58:05

No advice on slug removal but we had to get the downstairs of our old house damp proofed - a small Victorian mid-terrace. Toner Damp Proofing (based in Belfast) did the work and were really reliable. I don't have their phone number any more but you'll get them on yell.com. Damp is miserable and our weather really doesn't help!

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