Purpose: Dampness is a problem in predominantly period properties due to lack of insulation, heating, ventilation and untreated building defects. Associated problems of dampness in buildings transcend physical deterioration in buildings. There are serious and varied health hazards and environmental problems, particularly concerning the chosen methods of remediation. The aim of this study is to examine other eco-friendly and sustainable alternatives to Chemical treatment of dampness, which is disruptive to occupants and intrusive to the building.
Design/methodology/approach: Case study methodology was employed for this study as a deep understanding of dampness and the effectiveness of the electro-osmosis and magneto-physical methods. Nine properties treated using electro-osmosis and magneto-physical methods are presented as exploratory case studies to demonstrate their effectiveness in comparison to the conventional dampness treatment method.
Findings: In 3, 4, 6, representing (33%) of the cases, significant improvements to rising dampness was achieved. However, it was found in few of the cases; 1, 2, 5, 7 and 8 representing (56%), that the dampness returned after treatment. It was not successful in case 9 which represent (11%) due to other source of dampness that was not detected initially. On further investigation, it was found in these cases that the sources of dampness had not been exhausted at the beginning of the experimentation, necessitating the strong recommendations that thorough investigations of sources of dampness in buildings must be undertaken before treatment is applied.
Practical implications: Electro-osmosis and Magneto-physical method are chemical-free, simpler and cheaper to apply. In other to eliminate the negative imprints of the 70s and 80s, educating building professionals through continuous professional development (CPDs) is paramount to their revival, as effective measures for arresting rising dampness in buildings.
Originality/value: The study argues for increased preference for the eco-friendly and sustainable alternative methods to conventional chemical based methods of treating rising dampness.