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DAMPNESS:The access or penetration of moisture contents inside a building through its walls, floors, or roof is known dampness. One of the requirements of the building is that it should be free from dampness. Dampness in a building may occur due to bad design, faulty construction and use of poor quality of materials. Dampness not only affects the life of the building but also creates unhygienic conditions in the building. The treatment given to prevent leakage of water from roof is generally termed as water proofing whereas the treatment given to keep the walls, floors and basement dry is termed as damp proofing.

Defects of dampness
It cause dry rot to the wooden members provided in the building.

It causes corrosion of metals used in the construction of buildings.

It causes peeling off and removal of plaster. It causes efflorescence in brick work which may result in disintegration of bricks. Reduce the life of structure. It causes unhygienic conditions/unhealthy living conditions .

It promotes growth of termites.

Carpet, if used on floor of a damped building, gets destroyed earlier. All electric installation get degraded.

CAUSES OF DAMPNESS:1. Rain penetration 2. Level of site 3. Drainability of the soil 4. Climatic conditions 5. Defective materials 6. Defective construction 7. Moisture which originate in the building itself

1.Rain penetration:it is considered as the chief source of penetration of dampness in the structures. Properly constructed walls offer considerable resistance to penetration. Moisture can rapidly penetrate from porous bricks/stones or from joints. Rain can easily penetrate through the cracks and joints between wall and roof, or from roof component.

2. Level of site:The elevation of the building site has also effects on dampness, The structure built on higher ground level can be drained off easily and less liable to dampness,

3. Drainability of soil:Dampness rising through the foundation walling. Moisture from wet ground may rise well above the ground level on account of capillary action. The Drainability of soil on which the building is constructed is an important factor for causing dampness, gravel and sandy soils allow water to pass through very easily, But the clayey soil retains the moisture and also causes dampness due to capillary rise.

4. Climatic conditions:dampness is also called due to climatic changes, due to condensation process in cold weather the atmospheric moisture/water vapors can be identified by the drops present on walls, roofs or on ceiling.

5. Defective materials:Dampness can be caused due to soakage of moisture by the defective materials like porous bricks, soft stone.

6. Defective construction:Defective construction of various parts such as joints between parapet and the roof coping causes dampness by transmitting rain water. In case of flat roofs, inadequate roof slopes, improper rain water pipe connections, and defective junction between roof slab and parapet wall may prove to be the source of dampness.

7. Moisture which originates in the buildings itself:In case of any leakage in sewers, down water pipes , in kitchen or bath rooms it can cause dampness in the building.

Methods of preventing dampness

1.By providing damp proof course 2.By surface treatment 3.By integral water-proof construction

1.By providing damp proof course:The continuous layer of an impervious material provided in between the source of dampness and part of the structure is called damp proof course. It may consist of bitumen, plastic or polythene sheets, cement concrete. D.P.C is laid horizontally above ground level at plinth in external wall to prevent from dampness. Generally DPC laid by layer of cement concrete (1:2:4) with full thickness of wall, on top of wall either at 15 to 20 cm above ground level, On the top of concrete layer two coats of hot bitumen are provided. Or other damp proof material is applied on the concrete layer.

2. By surface treatment:Surface treatment consists in filling up the pores of the surfaces subjected to dampness. This method consist of painting the exposed surface of all wall with the water repellant paint. Like rock seal water proof paint, styrene acrylate polymer emulsion. The walls plastered with cement, lime and sand in proportion of 1:3:6 is found to serve the purpose of preventing dampness in wall due to rain effectively.

3. By integral water proof construction:This method consist of adding certain compounds in the mortar or concrete to make it more dense by filling the pores through chemical action or increase impermeability. Such compounds are available in market in powdered as well as in liquid forms. Silica added to concrete to reacts with available calcium hydroxide and produce additional CSH gel that permanently bond to existing CSH, filling the microscopic pores. The surface is less porous, denser and harder. Or 5% sunlight soap is added in the water to be used for preparing the mortar, Which fill the pores and water repellent substance is formed on wall surface to make it damp proof course.

Do not allow water to run on the face of the building. Provide watershed. Provide adequate slope on terraces and bathrooms and external areas. Ground slopes should be good. All building should have plinth protection

Plinth height should be one feet or more.

Lawn should not be made too close to the buildings Plumbing connections should be optimum.(slope, dia). Wall coping or column coping provided.

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