Liam Waine visits a house seriously affected by damp, allegedly caused by the installation of cavity wall insulation. This problem is becoming increasingly common for properties on the West Coast of England and Wales, particularly for houses in areas exposed to wind and rain.
Client Kenny Hanson shares his experience including how his health has suffered and how Stephensons have been able to assist him.
Cavity extraction specialist Damian Mercer also provides insight into how to identify cavity wall insulation and the tell tales signs that damp may have developed as a result.
For more information on how Stephensons can help you pursue a claim for compensation if you believe wrongly installed cavity wall insulation has caused damp in your home call us on 0175 321 6399.
Cavity wall insulation - compensation claims video transcript
Liam Waine: In recent times I'm getting more and more inquiries about a common problem affecting properties on the west coast of England and Wales. Today I'll be looking at a house which has been seriously affected by damp which has been allegedly caused by the installation of cavity wall insulation.
Kenny Hanson: Being a fit person all my life I couldn't understand even though you put air into the house, you open the windows, the spores of the damp can be in the air. Basically I've been having asthma problems for the last five or six years. I take an inhaler in the morning and at night now, twice a day. Since I have found out this problem I have spoke to the nurse about when I've had my check ups and she said, "this could be exactly what has caused your problem." She says, "if you get rid of the damp or if you move somewhere else, it could be that it could clear up."
It started about two years after it was put in. The paper started to come off. I've had some decorators do it. Then I pasted it on with super tight paste. I made it stronger, to make it hold. It just kept coming off down the hallway and in bedrooms and things, and in the bathroom. I actually rang the guys that were involved with the cavity wall insulation. I explained I had a problem, there's something wrong, it seems to be getting damp in the house.
The guys that actually did it turned round to me and said, "well, no this shouldn't be happening," because they took the feather stuff out and wrung it out, because it was wet through. He just turned round to me, he said, "look we just did what we did. It's not our problem." His last words with me, "take me to court if you want to take it any further."
Damian Mercer: The best way of identifying if your property has had a retro-fitted cavity wall insulation, you can look for a drill pattern. Usually around openings you will find drill holes here, here, here. The moisture is gathered inside the cavity wall insulation. As the moisture comes back out of this brickwork, picking up salts, this is a telltale sign that moisture is trying to come back out of the property leaving a salty residue. As we've come into the property the plaster has come off the wall. Again we have the telltale signs of effervescence, the white powder. If you look in corners there tends to be staining and the wallpaper will start to come away from the surface.
Kenny Hanson: It's like now, I didn't think that I could do anything about it. I'd have to live with it, and eventually try and find the cost of getting it put right myself. As it was, Stephensons found the guarantee that was a 25 year guarantee. As I thought I couldn't do anything about it, and then they explained to me that this is becoming a big problem. People don't realise that this is their right. I didn't know anything about it, so if they hadn't advised me and explained to me the situation, I wouldn't have known.