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The changing nature of damp investigations and the implications of retrofit cavity and external wall insulation on standard forms of building
The challenges associated with surveying and reporting on buildings have always been subject to the construction trends, fashion and the needs of the people who occupy them. The desire to improve the thermal efficiency of our existing housing stock and the push to promote energy saving measures by the government is fundamentally changing the nature and performance of our housing stock in a way we perhaps have not seen before. We are starting to discover that the implications of some of these interventions have not been fully appreciated and can be far from desirable. This paper discusses the reasons why some properties are becoming more susceptible to problems associated with atmospheric moisture, and considers how ill-advised or poorly executed retrofit insulation is leading to problems commonly associated with water penetration and condensation. The paper will also consider the longer-term implications for maintenance and inspection of buildings that have been retrofitted with External Wall and Cavity Wall insulation but, as yet, appear defect free.
The full article is available to institutions that have subscribed to the journal.
Stephen Hodgson joined the Property Care Association (PCA)1 as a technical specialist in 2000 after 13 years working as a surveyor and manager in the preservation industry. He was promoted to Chief Executive Officer of the Association in October 2012. Stephen is passionate about the industry in which he is proud to serve and is committed to delivering the highest possible standards of service and workmanship to consumers as well as first rate representation and value for money to members of PCA. Stephen continues to maintain strong links with organisations such as RICS, the Council of Mortgage Lenders, and CIOB.