Importance of Moisture / Damp Inspection: Protecting Your Property & Health


When it comes to maintaining a healthy and safe living environment, addressing dampness in your home is of utmost importance. Dampness can lead to a range of issues, including mold growth, property damage including structural, and human health risks.

Dampness in a property is a common issue that can have detrimental effects on both the structural integrity of the building and the health of its occupants. Whether it is due to seepage, leaks, condensation, poor ventilation or due to other causes, dampness can lead to a host of problems such as mold growth, decay, and damage to the building materials.

Conducting a damp / moisture inspection in your home is a proactive step towards identifying and resolving damp-related problems. That is why damp inspection is crucial to identify and address damp issues promptly. In this article, we will explore the significance of damp or moisture inspections in your home and the benefits it offers.

Common problems related to Moisture in the Home

Wet areas in your home are more vulnerable to water damage; so experienced and knowledgeable inspectors pay special attention to checking bathrooms kitchens and balconies. Some of the common problems include:

  • In bathrooms, damage to wall tiles and flooring may be caused by inadequate or poor waterproofing.
  • Leaking taps, pipes, toilets and other plumbing issues may result in significant water damage to cabinets, wall and floors. It can also percolate to peripheral areas.
  • In kitchens and other wet areas, the inspector will pay specific attention to areas underneath shelves, inside cupboards, as also the skirting along walls for signs of overflows, sinks as well as leaks arising from improper plumbing installation.
  • Absence of proper drainage or improper slope leading to water accumulation can on the roof or balcony or wet areas can lead to seepage/dampness.

How to identify the source of dampness?

  • Damp walls feel cold to the touch; it also causes the flaking of paint and peeling off wallpaper. Additionally, mold and fungal growth form greenish-grey spots on the walls. Such wall dampness is caused by constant water leakage / seepage, maybe from the roof, leaking water tanks, or seepage from exterior walls, balcony or terrace or windows.
  • Water may seep from constant leakage from a plumbing installation or water collected on the roof or upper floor through the ceiling to cause discoloration in paint or create visible brown patches in the ceiling.
  • Areas like bathrooms, kitchens, store rooms, or closed spaces are usually not well-ventilated and are a source of A strong musty smell within these areas is a clear indication of dampness.
  • Checking the tile grout in moisture-laden areas like bathrooms and kitchens for any kind of mold growth. The mold shows the grouting’s waterproofing is not adequate and might let water seep into the floor or walls.
  • Black mold may develop around the frames of wooden and uPVC windows due to water seepage through gaps between the window frame and the wall

Damp or Moisture Inspections play a crucial role in identifying the source and addressing moisture issues in your home. It detects the actual source of moisture with the help of advanced thermal imaging technology. Let us know further in detail about its advantages.

Benefits of Damp inspection for Ensuring a Healthy and Safe Living Environment

  • Early Detection and Prevention

One of the primary reasons to have routine / annual damp inspections is the early detection and prevention of moisture-related issues. Dampness can occur due to various factors, including leaks, condensation, or poor ventilation. By conducting thorough inspections, professionals can identify signs of dampness in its early stages before it evolves into a more significant problem. This allows us for speedy action to be taken, preventing further damage to the property and reducing the risk of costly repairs down the line.

  • Maintaining Structural Integrity

Moisture can cause destruction to the structural integrity of a building. It can also cause electrical & mechanical damages and become grave safety issues. When dampness infiltrates the walls, floors, or ceiling, it can weaken the materials and reduce the stability of the structure. With time, this can lead to damage which not only endangers the safety of the property but also decreases its value. Moisture / Damp inspection can identify areas vulnerable to moisture damage, allowing for timely repairs and maintenance to preserve the structural integrity of the property.

  • Prevention of Health Hazards

Dampness in a property has significant adverse impact on the health of its occupants. Excessive moisture provides an ideal environment for the growth of mold and other harmful microorganisms. These can release spores and allergens into the air, leading to respiratory issues like asthma, allergies, skin issues and other health problems. By conducting damp inspection, potential sources of moisture can be identified, and appropriate measures can be taken, ensuring a healthy living environment for residents.

  • Protecting Property Value

As a property owner, it is essential to prioritize the maintenance and well-being of your investment. Investing in damp inspection can help you maintain the value of your property. By proactively addressing any damp issues beforehand, you can present a well-maintained and desirable property, increasing its market value and attracting potential buyers or tenants.

  • Avoiding Unpleasant Smell

As mentioned above, untreated mold due to dampness, can create an unlikable and musty smell around your home. You may experience an unpleasant smell but not know where it is coming from; this may be because the damp patch or mold spores are hidden behind the wall or furniture or anywhere. The smell of dampness and mold can become strong and overwhelming in your home; you do not want it to stop you from having guests around or interfere with your everyday life. Luckily, with the correct damp treatment carried out by a professional, you should be able to get rid of the smell fairly easily. Just remember that when it comes to dampness, out of sight should not mean out of mind.

  • Improving Indoor Air Quality

Dampness and mold growth can significantly degrade indoor air quality. Mold spores, along with other airborne allergens, can lead to respiratory problems and worsen existing conditions such as asthma or allergies. A damp inspection helps identify areas of concern and enables you to take the necessary steps to improve indoor air quality. This may include implementing better ventilation, installing natural dehumidifiers like indoor plants, or repairing leaks and moisture sources.

  • Prevent Termite Infestation

Termites are destructive pests that can cause significant damage to your property. They feed on wood and cellulose materials, making homes with wooden structures particularly vulnerable. While there are various methods to prevent termite infestations, one important aspect is conducting regular damp inspections. Dampness provides an ideal environment for termites to thrive, as they require moisture to survive. With damp inspection, you can find the termite infestation & their source to give you a long term solution.

  • Improving the appearance of your Home

Painting over damp patches can cause the paint to crack and deteriorate and often, the black patches can show through paint. Instead of wasting your time and money on products in an attempt to cover up damp patches, it is best to first get your home inspected thoroughly.


Damp / Moisture Inspections are a vital aspect of property maintenance that should not be overlooked. By detecting dampness & its sources in its early stages, helps preserving the structural integrity, preventing health hazards, improving energy efficiency, and protecting property value. It helps you identify damp / seepage / leakage sources, giving you long term – least cost – least destructive solutions. It will save property owners from significant expenses and ensure a safe and comfortable living environment. If you haven’t had a damp inspection recently, it is time to consider scheduling one to safeguard your investment and the well-being of those who reside in your property.

A Damp House is a Significant Human Health Hazard

Ever wondered how damp in your house is playing with your health? Yes, the dampness on the wall here and there not only spoil the look of your home but impact the health of your family too. India being a tropical country, the building structures here are exposed to a high amount of moisture and humidity. Thus, they become more susceptible to damp development. When you are living in such a home, one thing leads to another and before you even know, your health is at risk too. Research suggests that on an average, we spend around 16 hours in our home. So, it is easy to apprehend how much at risk we are of developing health disorders due to damp.

Common human health hazards associated with a damp, moisture-laden house include:

  • Allergic Rhinitis: Characterized by frequent sneezing, stuffy nose, runny nose, itchy eyes, and post-nasal drip, allergic rhinitis is an inflammatory condition of the mucus membrane inside the nose. It is caused by viruses, bacteria, and allergens. Some of the external triggers of allergic rhinitis include humidity 3 chemicals, and air pollution (indoor or outdoor) etc.
  • Skin diseases: Most of the skin infections are caused by fungus. Fungal spores are the causal agent of these diseases. To understand more, click here 4 .
  • Migraine:One of the most common triggers of migraine is the weather. Whenever there is high (or low) humidity, there is a change in the oxygen levels in the air. The air becomes saturated with moisture in high humidity conditions reducing oxygen levels significantly. As a result, it
    becomes difficult for the brain of the people with migraine to receive the right amount of oxygen to function properly. Result? – Unusual expansion or contraction of the blood vessels to compensate for the lack of oxygen, exerting tremendous pressure on the nerve fibres. Therefore, indoor humidity too may trigger a migraine 5 headache.
  • Depression:Dampness and growth of fungus in poorly ventilated homes have been long associated with depression 6. One should be careful about it before it takes the turn of clinical depression.
  • Upper respiratory (nasal and throat) symptoms
  • Asthma symptoms in sensitized persons with asthma

What are the reasons and how does damp wreaks havoc on our health?

1. Flourishing Pathogens

When you have damp in your home, it means excess moisture has been accumulated. Guess what, it is best for enabling pathogens and all kinds of germs to flourish and reproduce in higher numbers. Besides viruses and bacteria, other microorganisms like fungi and algae also proliferate in a moist environment. These microorganisms, being pathogenic, bring forth health disorders of various types. They release harmful chemicals in the air that pollute the indoor atmosphere or act as allergens causing mild to severe irritations in different parts of the body. If dampness persists these irritations tend to become chronic in nature.

2.Humid conditions make transmission faster

If multiplying by leaps and bounds was not enough, the transmission of viruses and bacteria and other microbes is facilitated in humid conditions. When you present them a humid indoor environment, they tend to spread exponentially.

Look at what’s happening in the current pandemic situation! Earlier it was said that COVID-19 can flourish only in cold climates. But more recent evidence shows that it can be transmitted in all areas including hot and humid places 1. Actually, virus thrives inside the human body the normal temperature of which is 36.5-degree to 37-degree Celsius. This is regardless of the external temperature and weather conditions. So, apart from maintaining basic hygiene, it is advisable to keep your house as damp-free as possible to restrict the transmission of viruses.

3. Flourishing dust mites

Dust mites are popular in households where the temperature is considerably high and the moisture level is also in excess. They are the catalyst to give rise to allergy, stuffy nose, respiratory problems and asthma. So, if you have experienced stuffy nose, itchy eyes, and breathing problem then you might want to look into the condition of your house. These symptoms can further give birth to health problems that
will cost you in the long run. It is better to invest some money in your house now or at least take suitable care.

4. Welcoming pests

Well, mosquitoes and flies infested every part of the house, spiders spinning cobwebs in every corner, the occasional screeching of mice or musk-rats- is this how you picture your home? Damp build-up welcomes all these pests and other unwanted ones too. They have a directly proportionate relationship with damp which means the greater the damp in the house, the more is the number of pests. Now
would you want to live in a house with humans or disgusting pets? If the former option is your choice then get rid of this unhealthy living condition immediately. It affects your immune system, breathing pattern and slowly destroys your health.

5. Cold climate

Several types of research have shown that a cold indoor climate is the result of dampness in those regions where it is not naturally cold outside. Unmaintained house, damaged roofs and walls are the common causes but it could also be because of the lack of proper ventilation. Humans can stay overall healthy if the environment in which he or she is living is dry with optimum moisture content in the air. If
the house becomes a place where it is difficult to breathe then it is obvious that the environment isn’t right.

Cold indoor atmosphere adversely affects respiratory health. A significant number of people in the world suffer from asthma 2 which is often linked with damp indoors. Chronic coughing, wheezing, breathing difficulty are the health problems which lead a person towards asthma. And asthma could be life-threatening. It just gets worse if not treated in the right way with the right amount of attention.

To make your life a little easy, here are some common signs of damp to watch out:

Damp patches : A patch is a sign of damp commonly seen on the ceiling, walls, behind the WC in the bathroom etc. Damp patches on walls are generally the result of penetration 7, where water from outside gets into the brickwork through gaps and cracks

Musty damp smell : The first and the foremost thing about damps are they are musty and smell bad. The freshness of a room gets evaporated with damp walls. So, always keep an eye on this.

Peeling and flaky paint : The most common thing in a house that has been ignored. Once you start noticing this, get a professional inspection done and get it fixed.

Cold in-house atmosphere : Do you wonder why your house feels cold be it summer or winter? Well, it’s the damp dude!

Discoloured walls : Discoloration is characterized by localized darkening of the original color of walls

You can read this article for a better understanding of the same.

You should take proactive steps to reduce indoor air pollution because if you want to live a healthy life, your home is where you should start. Our environment plays a major role in our mental and physical well-being. So when it’s damp and dirty, it is not only creating a negative space you are living in but also and most importantly it is affecting your health in a way you might not anticipate. In such cases, it is sooner the better. Go for a professional damp inspection which will help in detecting the source of dampness with help of thermal imaging technology and take decisive action to eliminate damp from your house at the earliest.

You should take proactive steps to reduce indoor air pollution because if you want to live a healthy life, your home is where you should start. Our environment plays a major role in our mental and physical well-being. So when it’s damp and dirty, it is not only creating a negative space you are living in but also and most importantly it is affecting your health in a way you might not anticipate. In such cases, it is sooner the better. Go for a professional damp inspection which will help in detecting the source of dampness with help of thermal imaging technology and take decisive action to eliminate damp from your house at the earliest.

Signs of dampness or moisture are common but not the knowledge about its sources and effects. Read this article to know the sources and effects of dampness in a house.

Top 7 Sources of Dampness in a House & its Harmful Effects

Flaky paint, leaky ceiling, wet and patchy walls – Aren’t these a common sight in most houses we see around us? Let’s face it, our own houses, too, must have had one or a few of these imperfections at some point in time. We noticed; we disliked; we thought of doing something about it; and perhaps, we moved on! – Often, taking inadequate or no measures at all. But do you know – dampness is one of the most harmful things that can cause a building to deteriorate prematurely? Worse – it affects the health of the residents severely.

To prevent a house from becoming damp, we must know the reasons behind it. Faulty sills, bad masonry work, subsoil water in the foundation are just some of the most common causes of dampness in a building. What are the other sources of dampness? What are the effects of it? Read on to know it all.

Sources of Dampness in Buildings

There are a number of sources of dampness in buildings. Some of the common causes are as follows:

Improper plumbing installation in buildings can lead to leakage/dampness problems with gradual use.

1. Improper Plumbing Installation

Improper plumbing installation in buildings can lead to leakage/dampness problems with gradual use. This can be due to the following few things:

  • If FTA (female threaded adapter) of a plumbing fitting is installed inside the tiles then an extension piece is required. This creates an extra joint in the pipeline which may lead to leakage.
  • UPVC pipe used in a hot water line is an example of the incorrect material selected as per its properties. In such cases, the material, unable to withstand high temperatures, will begin to degrade and break down leading to leakage.
  • The wrong solvent-material used for joining pipes can be another cause of plumbing failure. For example, if pipes are made of UPVC, the solvent or glue to be used should also be UPVC-compatible. The same is applicable to CPVC pipes. Any incompatibility here can lead to leakage and dampness due to a less firm joint.
  • If grouting is not provided at the junction around bathroom floor drain outlet pipe, there will be spreading of moisture. This will ultimately lead to unhealthy & unhygienic conditions for residents and can lead to deterioration at below storey ceiling surfaces in due course of time.
  • Loose plumbing fitting or inadequate tightening of plumbing fitting with FTA or other faulty workmanship at the time of installation etc. are also one of the common reasons which lead to leakage/ dampness problem.
If the waterproofing membranes are not overlapped properly, rainwater can seep through the gaps.

2. Faulty waterproofing

If the waterproofing membranes are not overlapped properly, rainwater can seep through the gaps. Besides, wrong sloping, defective junctions between the slab of the roof, terrace and parapet of the wall, and clogged outlets may also lead to water stagnation resulting in dampness.

Moisture intrusion can also happen if no fillet or drip mould is provided at the chhajja.

3. The intrusion of rainwater through walls

Most common damage inside homes occurs due to water seepage from the gaps between window frame & external wall. Gap will be a source for moisture to flow inside the home. If gaps are not filled properly, it will lead to moisture intrusion, paint deterioration & damage to inside walls.

Moisture intrusion can also happen if no fillet or drip mould is provided at the chhajja. Also, If the paint used on the exterior wall is not of water-repelling variety then moisture can settle beneath the coat and spread internally over time. In both cases, exterior walls begin to deteriorate fast due to moisture.

Sometimes defective construction materials are used during the construction of the building which can lead to construction quality issues.

4. Poor construction materials

Sometimes defective construction materials are used during the construction of the building which can lead to construction quality issues. For example: If poor quality materials are used like sand with excess salt then efflorescence will happen sooner or later. Poor quality bricks will swell upon absorbing rainwater leading to dampness.

5. Indoor Plants

Most plants release moisture into the surrounding air through small pores called stomata on the leaves – a process called transpiration. This increases the moisture content1 of the indoor air. But not all plants are humidifying. Moreover, you must know how much to water your potted green friends so that they do not release excess moisture into the air. A little knowledge of indoor gardening can help you avoid dampness in your home while still making it eco-friendly and sustainable.

Vegetation growth around the wall is very harmful as vegetation in and around the walls leads to cracks in them and over time these cracks widen.

6. Vegetation

Vegetation growth around the wall is very harmful as vegetation in and around the walls leads to cracks in them and over time these cracks widen. Water deposits in these cracks causing further dampness.

Dampness is inevitable if your house is improperly ventilated.

7. Improper Ventilation

Dampness is inevitable if your house is improperly ventilated. Numerous processes like exhalation by the inmates of the house, cooking, and use of geyser in the bathroom add moisture to the indoor air. If the area is closed, this excess moisture gets trapped. There should be proper air circulation in the house so that an optimum moisture level is maintained and indoor air quality never deteriorates.

Dampness has serious consequences on the health of a building.

Adverse effects of Dampness in a House / Property

Dampness has serious consequences on the health of a building. It needs to be dealt with urgency. Otherwise, a culmination of all these damages may eventually lower its life expectancy.

  • Pest and insect growth: Damp households cause unhygienic conditions of living. Damp places attract microbes and insects. Damp places are breeding places of gregarious pests like mosquitoes, flies, and termites. Respiratory problems, wheezing skin rashes, allergies are often found in inhabitants living in damp areas.
  • Electric appliance damage: Moisture present in a house, if it comes in contact with the electric appliances, will damage them. This can also lead to serious problems like electrocution of the appliance and the person handling it might suffer an electric shock. So it is very important that areas around the switchboard and wiring have no moisture deposition.
  • Damage to doors and walls: Damp environment can have serious damage to wooden doors and windows. This leads to termite infestation in them along with swelling up of the wood. Doors and windows may even completely get damaged becoming function-less. In severe cases, installations might get damaged.
  • Damage to wooden furniture: A humid indoor atmosphere can affect the wooden furniture and other materials made of wood in the house. Wood absorbs moisture and swells up and this is certainly not good for the longevity of the furniture.
  • Corrosion of metal: Metal appliances, furniture or other items may get corroded due to the presence of moisture. Metals attract moisture and rust or lose the sheen with time. Metal installations may even become brittle and break off. This is dangerous especially in the case of railings and grills.
  • The efflorescence of plaster, bricks and paint: As already discussed, dampness renders bricks and plaster to crumble. Porosity increases and the strength of the materials decrease which is harmful to the building. The coating of paint also turns flaky and tends to fall off. This gives a nasty feel & look to the house. Peeling of the paint exposes the walls and ceiling to further damage.
  • Unpleasant-looking household: Damp patches on the walls with algal spores growing on them give a bad and unwelcoming look to the house. A stale, suffocating smell fills the air. This smell can cause allergy and skin diseases in many individuals.
A damp house is a constant source of illness. Dampness affects your two most important assets - your home and your health.

Effects of Dampness – On Health

A damp house is a constant source of illness. It causes:

  • Respiratory ailments: Allergic rhinitis, chronic to acute breathing problems or asthma
  • Skin ailments: Rashes and redness
  • Recurring cold and flu
  • Depression

Therefore practically, dampness affects your two most important assets- your home and your health. Can anything be scarier than this?

Watch the video for better understanding:

Last but not the least, dampness lowers your living standards. Who would like to reside in a perennially cold, stale-smelling house? To avoid this unpleasant situation, the source and the cause of damp should be identified first, and then repaired for a permanent cure.

Nowadays, waterproofing and damp-proofing materials are available widely in the market to shield your abode from dampness and its harmful effects. With the advancement in technology, effective moisture and damp assessment can be done with thermal imaging technology, as well. You must opt for professionals for effective detection of dampness for ensuring a healthy home.

Don’t make living with dampness a habit. Take definitive steps to get rid of this hidden devil corroding away your hygiene and safety silently but steadily.

Water leakage can cause serious damage including health problems in a house. Know common causes of water leakages in homes.

Most Common Causes of Water Leakages in Homes

Water leakage is a serious issue inside a house which should be dealt with in urgency. There are quite a number of factors and reasons contributing to water leakage – it may be leaking plumbing lines or corrosion in plumbing lines, cracks in the walls, damaged waterproofing in the roof, or a leaking AC. Water leakage inside the house leads to serious issues like stale-smelling indoors, growth of microbes, pests inside the house, damaged property and a lot more. So, while you need a thorough health check-up of the house, here’s a heads up about the possible causes and their effects.

Leakage can waste water, damage your home, and encourage unwanted organic growth. Watch out for these common signals of water leakage.

Water Leakage: Signs and Signals

Leakage can waste water, damage your home, and encourage unwanted organic growth. As you cannot see most of the pipework in your home, you may not always know that a leak has formed.

One of the best ways to protect your home from future leaks is to understand and look for common situations that cause leaks. Watch out for these common signals of water leakage:

  • Dark patches on the walls and ceiling
  • A stale and musty odour
  • Peeling off of paint and plaster crumble
  • Visual leaks
  • The occurrence of pests, especially termites
  • Watermarks and discolouration

A dampened environment in your house can lead to serious problems which are also signals of water leakage / seepage in your house. Skin rashes and allergy, asthma, nasal and throat congestion, coughing and wheezing can be caused by dampness due to water leakage or the bacteria which grows inside the household as a result of dampening.

One of the best ways to protect your home from future leaks is to understand and know common causes of Water Leakage Inside the House.

Common Causes of Water Leakage inside the House

  • Leakage from underneath the water sink can be a serious problem. This can happen due to loose or improper connection at the bottle trap or waste coupler tread joint.
  • Dripping faucets can be a serious and common problem of water leakage. Over tightening of a tap can cause it to leak. When a tap is hardened too much, it starts to develop a leak due to the wearing and tearing of the tap washer. A loose operating head or lever can lead to a similar problem. Sometimes debris get stuck inside the tap which may cause it to leak. Another common case is when people do not turn them off well enough.
  • Leaking pipes are a major contributor to water leakage in households. They are often embedded inside walls and are difficult to detect. You only get to know when the wall surfaces start to deteriorate. It is a clear sign of dampness which is difficult to get rid of.
  • If there are any leakage or moisture-related issues in the wall for some reason, vegetation will grow on the walls. This vegetation develops further cracks in the wall causing further deterioration.
  • In case of negligence, if cavities and holes are left in the wall, they behave as a source of attracting and storing moisture. They cause water seepage and an unhealthy condition in the household.
  • If your plumbing system is extremely old, rust and other forms of corrosion may wear it away. There will be discolouration on your pipes. This will cause water leakage inside the household. Rust can have other damaging effects too. Accumulation of rust may block the flow of water in the pipes resulting in the raising of water pressure and leakage. Severe rusting may also weaken the pipes and erode through the pipes causing leaks. To understand where leakage can happen, you need to understand the plumbing system of your home.
  • Damaged pipe joints are another common reason for water leakage in a building. Do you know why? – Because, the place where pipes connect often represents the weakest point in a line. It is always under significant pressure. Similarly, we have to avoid usage of extension piece for FTA(Female thread adapter – which is used to connect plumbing line to tap) during improper installation of plumbing fitting. Over time, these pipe joints deteriorate causing leakage.
  • Extreme temperature changes inside the pipelines can cause it to expand and contract alternately, which may cause cracks to develop inside the pipeline. This will cause leakage inside the pipelines. However, this is common mostly in hilly areas like Shimla, Dalhousie, Gangtok, etc.
  • Refrigerators1 or water purifiers2 can also cause water leakage inside your household. If these go unnoticed for a long period of time, they can cause serious damage to your floor. It is also extremely unsafe to use the appliances while they are leaking as they may result in an electric shock.
  • Leaky roofs, mainly caused due to deteriorated waterproofing, can contribute to water seepage inside the house. The improper slope can cause rainwater to accumulate on the rooftop / terrace which may then seep into the house.You must also make sure that there are no open electrical conduits on the rooftop or else, leaking water may enter the wiring system and cause serious problems downward (in case of the connection running downward).
  • All types of pipes and faucets are manufactured to withstand up to a certain level of water pressure. Any extra pressure or uneven surge can put a strain on them causing them to give away after a certain point in time. The result is leakage.
Water leakage is a significant problem which needs to be addressed at the earliest. Know the effects of water leakage in house.

Effects of Water Leakage in House

  • Unhygienic conditions: Water and moisture inside a house are accompanied by bacterial and fungal growth. This might lead to diseases like asthma, allergic rhinitis, skin rashes, depression and so on.
  • Disintegration: Porous walls hold moisture for a longer time which may lead to deterioration of the walls & further damage. The bricks may develop cracks and fissures due to alternate cooling and expansion of water present in them.
  • Decaying windows and doors: Moisture may lead to the decay of windows and doors. They swell and tend to touch the floor causing obstruction during opening & closing and other related damages. The decay of wood frames, ironwork, bricks, etc may also be caused by moisture.
  • Plaster crumbles: On absorbing moisture, plaster turns soft and crumbles giving an ugly appearance to the walls.
  • Damaged wooden furniture: Wooden furniture gets damaged on continuous exposure to a damp environment.
  • Wall decorations are damaged: Wall decorations such as cladding, wallpapering, timber handicrafts are damaged as they absorb moisture from the damp walls. This ruins the aesthetics & weakens the structural integrity of your house completely which cannot be redone without solving the leakage problems from the core.
  • Termite infestation: Dampness attracts gregarious pests in a home – be it cockroaches, ants or termites. In fact, termites prefer living in areas with high moisture content. They infest damp walls making them porous and damage wooden furniture and structures.
  • Damage of electrical equipment: Electrical equipment may get damaged and short circuits may happen. It is extremely dangerous to use electrical installations in such situations. So, you must try to avoid dampness caused due to leakage / seepage, in the first place, especially where there are electrical outlets like appliances and switches and also see to it that water does not come in contact with the electrical wiring of the house.

Trust us, water leakage (and seepage) which is the main culprit behind dampness can be a real threat to your home. Fix it before it costs you your peace of mind.

Moisture assessment can be done in a better way with help of advanced thermal imaging technology.

Moisture assessment using thermal imaging technology

Thanks to the advancement of technology, infrared cameras or thermal imagers are making moisture assessment in buildings easier than ever. These cameras can swiftly and, most importantly, non-invasively focus on the probable areas of anomalies caused by excessive evaporative moisture cooling. The images formed on the lens of these devices actually show patterns of moisture-spread that only trained eyes can decipher. Hence, only professionals associated with building investigation should be relied upon for such a technology-centric yet accurate investigation procedure. Here’s more on thermal imaging3 and why it is becoming essential for moisture detection.

Watch this to get a clearer idea of how leakage/seepage is detected in a home:

Your home is the place where you spend the maximum of your time. After a hectic day at work, we get back to our home and relax. We would definitely not like to stay in a stale smelling, unhygienic and dampened house where water is leaking. Our home is our abode which should brighten up our mood. A dampened environment would make us gloomy. Water leakage / seepage inside the house should be tracked down and be treated at the earliest possible time as it is not only unhygienic but also unsafe. It is always advisable to take the help of professionals – the home inspectors for this or else you may overlook some issues or end up doing a wrong assessment of the problem. By employing thermal imaging technology, any hidden leakage can be detected to the source before they become large problem and lead to serious damage which can make your home unhealthy.

8 Moisture Warning Signals in Your Home

Prevention is better than Cure

1. Dark Patches
2. Peeling off or other paint deterioration
3. Damp and Musty Odour
4. Visible water stains or Discolouration
5. Gatherings of Pests
6. Visual leaks
7. Condition of wooden furniture
8. Health Symptoms

Homes are supposed to protect us from the harmful things from outside like water, wind, and extreme temperatures. But sometimes, however, our homes fail to serve its purpose and moisture enters into our house.

As a homeowner, moisture is one of the most common and annoying problems you can face. Moisture / Dampness in buildings is a major factor that contributes to mould growth, unhealthy buildings, and poor indoor air quality. Moisture is one of the most important agents of building deterioration.

Moisture Intrusion is an often-unseen problem lurking in many homes. A little excess water in the wrong place can cause many other problems, such as mould growth, pest infestations, weakened building structures and unhealthy living conditions.

In many cases, moisture problems in houses or buildings are easy to get missed until they have progressed to the point of despair.

“Prevention is better than cure”. Early detection of these problems is significant for minimizing the extent and cost of the damage. But, how can you identify a moisture problem at the earliest?

Let us go through warning signs of moisture that homeowners should be on the lookout for:

1. Dark Patches in Home Elements

One of the most common signs of water-related problems in any structure is the appearance of dark patches in walls, ceilings, and other surfaces. As water seeps into building materials, it tends to cause them to look visibly dark.

Homeowners can often find these dark patches in ceilings after a heavy storm which indicates source of moisture can be in roof or sometimes due to floor / unit above if there is a leaky pipe there.

2. Peeling off or other paint deterioration on the surface finish

High humidity levels can cause wallpaper or paint finish to peel from the wall. Too much moisture behind the walls can eventually cause paint and wallpaper to start peeling or bubbling. If you see wallpaper or paint peeling or even protruding out like a bubble, it could indicate a moisture problem. Sometimes airborne moisture vapour gets behind the wallpaper and mixes with the glue, causing it to peel. Peeling off paint is mainly caused by moisture on the surface, poor surface preparation, using an incorrect painting method. Other paint deterioration like cracking or blistering paint on exterior or interior finishes can also happen due to these reasons.

3. Damp and Musty Odour

One of the most common signs of a moisture problem is the presence of strong, musty odour. This sign is a strong indicator that there is water damage somewhere nearby – possibly in the building materials hidden from your direct view. If you have a persistent, musty, damp smell in your bathroom, even after repeated cleanings, you may have moisture-related problem in the walls and subfloor. If a proper ventilation system does not help, you probably have a moisture build-up below the surface of walls or the floor. This odour is often caused by bacteria and mould growth that feeds on the excess moisture in a dark, cool space.

4. Visible Water Stains or Discolouration

A water stain will form a dark yellowish colour on your ceiling in a slightly deformed shape. This yellowish colour will soon turn into brown colour, and in fact, it may even start off sometimes as brown colour right at the beginning. It can be the symptom of a much larger problem and this is something that you should look into immediately. Some common causes of Water Stains on Ceilings are leaking pipes, leakage from roof and water seeping from upper unit / floor areas.

Stains or Discolouration can be prevented by reducing the accumulation of moisture in the wall / ceiling. Yellow, brown or black stains etc on your walls are signs of water damage from behind them.

5. Gatherings of Pests

Water is a necessity for life – and pests like ants, cockroaches, rodents, termites are no exception. As the humidity rises in your home, pests such as these will migrate inside your home, where they will begin to reproduce. A sudden increase in the presence of pests could be an indirect indication that there is a suitable source of water in your home. Of course, other nutrient sources, such as open food containers, exposed trash bins, and the like can also attract pests.

6. Visual leaks

Water is the enemy of every home. Being a homeowner, if you find unwanted water in your home, you should make every effort to find the root cause as quickly as possible. You need to do periodical visual checks of moisture / leakage / seepage in the home and get them repaired. Some leaks can be easily found by visual checking whereas, some leaks are concealed inside wall / structure.

7. Check the condition of wooden furniture

Damaged wood is a classic sign of elevated moisture levels. Because wood is porous, it absorbs moisture from the affected area as well as from the air as humidity levels change. This will cause the wood to swell and shrink with the changes. Check the integrity of wood by lightly pressing it. If it is soft, you know it has weakened from moisture damage.

8. Health Symptoms

One of the most annoying problems of moisture is its effect on our health. Common human health hazards associated with moisture / dampness in home include: respiratory (nasal and throat) symptoms, Asthma symptoms in sensitized persons with asthma, Cough, Wheeze, Allergies, Skin Diseases etc. People often ignore these important visual signs of moisture, but it can be harmful for your health.

Understanding and Detecting the Moisture Problem

If you have spotted one of the signs above, then it is important to understand about moisture problem and know the actual source of it. For that, you need professional help who will use moisture meter1 and advanced thermal imaging technology which can detect hidden / concealed leaks in the structure and give you long term – least destructive – low cost solutions.

If you feel your home has a moisture problem, you should take immediate action to solve it. Ignoring these signs will only make the problem progressively worse.

Apart from this, it is advisable to get a moisture / damp inspection before spending on costly waterproofing treatment or other related repair works.

Effective Ways to avoid Seepage at Home/ Property

An important step towards a happy life is good health. And good health can only be achieved in a clean, hygienic and healthy environment. Seepage is a very common problem which the majority of Indian Households must have had experienced at some point of time. The moisture and dampness due to seepage can result in fungal and bacterial growth which in turn could cause various allergies and other health-related problems to the occupants of the home.

The effects of water damage on your home as well as health can be far-reaching, and it may have massive damage. Therefore, ensuring that your home / office is free from any possible leakage and dampness has become one of the most important factors to understand and attend.

Some possible reasons for seepage

  • It can happen due to faulty internal plumbing:
    • Leaky drainage pipes or plumbing fittings at home
    • Outflow in the water supply pipes
    • A leakage in the neighborhood property’s internal plumbing (eg – Leakage from Bathroom or Kitchen on the Floor Above.)
  • If a gap exists between the walls of your home and the neighboring building, this would also cause water to seep through.
  • Water dampness and seepage happens when the exterior walls are not plastered properly or due to the use of poor-quality plastering materials. And seepage can also happen through exterior walls from gaps around window frame.
  • Seepage of water through floor tiles in bathrooms/kitchens of floor/flat / terrace above.
  • Poor waterproofing at the time of construction.

Ways to avoid seepage problems in your home

1. Repair cracks on walls

Cracks are among the root causes of moisture in your home. Due to cracks at the external wall, rainwater and moisture will enter the wall surface thereby affecting adjacent / in-house wall surfaces and will weaken the integrity of associated elements. If cracks not treated at the right time, can increase in depth and lead to further deterioration in the affected area. So it is important to fix or repair the cracks to have long lasting homes1.

2. Reduce indoor humidity

Sometimes we choose to dry laundry indoors. Drying it indoors is one of the causes which lead to humidity.

And the kitchen is also a place in home, where steam gets generated due to cooking. One of the easiest way for reduced humidity is to keep your windows regularly opened and home well ventilated. Budget-friendly ways of getting rid of humidity & moisture in your home is by getting installed an exhaust fan, especially in your kitchen, bathroom and other household activity area where water is frequently used. But if you are still facing the problem of humidity, then you also can opt for a dehumidifier. Read How to Control Humidity in Your Home Using a Dehumidifier?

3. Good-quality paints with specific property

If the paint on your wall is of inferior or poor quality, it tends to seep in moisture through concrete, which can damage the exterior and interior walls. This can result in weakening the strength of overall structure of your property and also make it appear unpleasant.

Apart from good quality, it is an important point to keep in mind: interior or exterior areas need a specific type of paint. Different paints have different properties and are formulated for different purposes. For example:  Exterior grade paints are used for exterior areas as they have resistance to cracking and dirt resistance, as well as provide protection from the damage ultraviolet (UV) rays cause.

4. Follow the finishing procedure properly

There are different layers to the final finishing of wall – like plaster, putty, primer and paint. If incorrect procedure followed at any layer like improper curing & poor surface preparation etc for the plastered surface finish at the external wall, then this can lead to cracks or surface damage. Thereby it can lead to a seepage problem, if left unnoticed. So, it is important to follow proper procedures in all layers of finishing.

5. Perform a visual check

Some visual checking that can be performed by a layman are as follows:

  • Check out for water pocket (or can say water getting accumulated) around drain outlet or any pipe blockage in the bathroom / kitchen, etc.
  • Check if any presence of algae or plant growth at exterior walls. The Existence of plants in an external wall or other parts of the building can cause cracks in walls which can lead to moisture intrusion.
  • There are some gaps which need to be sealed –gap around window and door frame; sink installation; AC gas pipe sleeve, drain outlet, gap at tile joints etc. It is important to seal all these gaps to save from the damage to home/property in future.

These checks will give you a basic idea about the moisture intrusion in your home.  In case of any issues, seek the services of a professional expert who would perform a thorough scan of the house using advanced thermal imaging technology2, and recommend an appropriate solution.

Common Mistake while dealing with seepage/ damp problems

Most of the painters or other vendors usually fix the problem of seepage/leakage/wall paint peel off or dampness on the wall simply by applying waterproofing solutions on the affected areas and repainting it again with the paint. This is indeed one of the most common mistakes done to solve the seepage problem of home/property as it will solve the issue temporarily and the problem will occur soon again after a few days. Reason is the root cause of seepage/moisture-related problem has not been fixed well. The very first step to solve the seepage/leakage problem is to find the source of the problem in the property. By employing thermal imaging technology, the source of seepage problem can be found out without damaging the property and can save you from The Invisible Silent Killer.

Our objective of writing this content was to share with you some effective ways to avoid seepage at your home or other property. If you are facing a seepage problem, check for all the possible causes in your house. If you want an expert advice, then damp inspection  using advanced thermal imaging technology can help you by detecting the exact source of this problem which will provide a long-term solution.

How to Control Humidity in Your Home Using a Dehumidifier?

  • What is a dehumidifier?
  • Signs that you need a dehumidifier
  • Advantages of using a Dehumidifier
  • How do dehumidifiers work?
  • 10 Features to look for in a Dehumidifier
  • Tips to use a dehumidifier
  • Types of Dehumidifiers

Is your home consistently sultry & warm inside despite your best efforts to keep it cool? Are you finding a mushy smell from everywhere inside the house? Well, before you blame the air conditioning system of your home or the room freshener you are using, check for the indoor humidity once. India being a predominantly warm country reports an excessive amount of humidity every year. High humidity causes plenty of damages at the macro level ( In households, humidity or high indoor moisture content leads to multi-dimensional damages that may need costly fixes. So, preventing humidity at the very initial stage is necessary for your home as well as human health. And using a dehumidifier makes this job easier.

What is a dehumidifier?

A dehumidifier is an electrical appliance that reduces and controls the level of humidity in the air in a closed space. By doing so, it prevents the growth of dust mites and other similar moisture-feeding micro-organisms inside the space and eliminates any musty smell resulting from them.

Signs that you need a dehumidifier

Any visible sign of dampness is an indication that the humidity level of your home is high and requires immediate attention. Few such signs of dampness are:

  • Damp patches on the walls and ceilings
  • Seepage/ leakage
  • Peeling paint and wallpapers
  • Bulging wall/ floor tiles
  • A persistent musty smell
  • Frequent incidence of allergy and skin problems within the family

Advantages of using a Dehumidifier

Dehumidifiers are effective units that come with several advantages for your space and most importantly, for your family. Following are some of the benefits:

1. Humidity reduction & improvement of indoor air quality

The quality of air inside a home is measured not only by the number and amount of toxins that one may or may not be breathing in but also by the humidity level of the air itself. A dehumidifier plays an important role in improving indoor air quality by reducing humidity ( It makes a home less hospitable for allergens like dust mites. As a result, the home feels fresh and musty odour, if any, vanishes automatically. Allergens being a serious health threat, the incidence of allergy also becomes much less with time.

The aesthetics of the building is also protected and the property is able to retain its value for a longer period of time.

2. Prevention of structural deterioration of a building

High levels of humidity can harm the structural integrity of a home. It can affect the woodwork, walls, ceilings, and metal fittings. A dehumidifier prevents a home from slow deterioration by controlling humidity that may originate due to a number of causes (

3. Time and energy saving

Designed to further cut down on energy costs, dehumidifiers with an auto shut-off feature use intelligent software to actively monitor the climate of the space where the dehumidifier is applied. It shuts down the moment the desired humidity level is reached.

A dehumidifier with a higher star rating operates in an energy-conscious manner. That way, it saves energy and helps you to cut down on your unwanted expenses significantly.

4. Easy and quick maintenance

Portable dehumidifiers can be easily moved from one place to another, and they allow quick maintenance. They do not disrupt daily life and run quietly in the background without causing any harm to anyone.

How do dehumidifiers work?

Dehumidifiers control humidity ( by removing excess moisture from the air creating inhospitable living conditions for dust mites and other allergens. A dehumidifier is much like a vacuum cleaner. It sucks in air from the room at one end, takes the moisture out of it, and then blows it back out into the room again. The moisture drips through a pipe into a collection tank that has to be emptied from time to time.

Dehumidifiers work in one of the two ways: by refrigeration or by absorption/ adsorption.

a. Refrigeration

In this process warm, moist air is sucked in through a grille on one side of the dehumidifier. An electric fan draws the air inward. The warm air passes over freezing cold pipes through which a coolant is circulated by a pump and compressor. As soon as the air cools, the contained moisture goes back in the form of liquid water and drips down off the pipes. Now, the moisture-free air passes over a heating element and warms back up to its original temperature.

Another grille blows back the dry and humid air into the room. There is a collecting tray or bucket at the bottom of the machine where the moisture that was there in the air originally drips down into. A ‘float’rises upward as the collecting tray fills up. When the tray is full, the float trips an electric switch that turns off the fan and switches on an indicator light telling you the machine needs emptying.

b. Absorption/ Adsorption

Some dehumidifiers work by mopping the water out of the air with a water-holding material and then “squeezing” the water away to remove it. The mopping action involves either absorption (where the water soaks right into something) or adsorption (where the water is picked upon the surface of something).

In this process, moist air is drawn in from the room through a duct. The air moves past a large rotating wheel made of water-absorbing material, which removes the humidity. The air is drawn by a fan operated by an electric motor. Dry air is blown back out into the room. An air duct underneath is kept hot by an electric heating element (yellow). The moisture-absorbing wheel rotates through the heated air space and has hot air blown past it to dry it out. The air is sucked past by a fan and electric motor once again. The hot, wet air is blown out through an exhaust duct.

As per content by Corroventa on Adsorption Dehumidifiers ( The picture shows the functioning principle for an adsorption dehumidifier. The air to be processed is sucked in through the inlet with the help of air fan, the air passes through the rotor whereupon the dehumidified air exists through a dry air outlet. The moisture that is adsorbed in the rotor is driven out through a small part of the air that being heated up in a heater. whereupon it passes through a smaller part of the rotor which is regenerated in this way. The damp air is then removed via the outlet to the environment.

10 Features to look for in a Dehumidifier

Investing in a dehumidifier is obviously a wise decision if you are residing in one of the warmer cities in India. Here are a few simple considerations that you must heed to while buying a dehumidifier (

1. Tank size

Dehumidifiers have a tank to collect water. It ranges from a minimum of 2 litres to a maximum of 8 litres capacity. Make sure you opt for the bigger tank so that you do not have to empty it too frequently.

2. Drain tube

Some machines with drain tubes enable the water to drain away rather than collecting in a tank. Remember that with a portable device it will not always be possible for it to drain externally. For example, if you are placing your dehumidifier inside a room, temporarily, then the drain tube will be rendered useless. In that case, you can insert the drain tube into the waste pipe already made for washing machine.

3. Energy usage

The electrical power consumption of dehumidifier and the relative running cost of it can be high. Generally, the desiccant machines use more power than refrigeration machines. So, investing in refrigerant dehumidifiers would be a wise decision.

4. Weight & size

Factors such as weight and size of the appliance are worth considering while deciding to buy a dehumidifier. It is better if it comes with a decent carrying handle.

5. Extraction Rate

Find out how many litres of water a day the dehumidifier can extract. Consider models with more extraction capacity and less power consumption feature.

6. Laundry Mode

Wet clothes drying up indoors during monsoon are an obvious source of excess moisture in households. Dehumidifiers are great for drying clothes. Some dehumidifiers offer a ‘laundry mode’ designed specifically for drying clothes. Such machines repeatedly extract moisture from the air without measuring the relative humidity of the room.

7. Auto start/off

If you want to run your dehumidifier using a time switch then make sure the model you use has an ‘auto on’ and ‘auto off’ feature to ease out manual intervention. It ensures: Power on, moisture extraction on.

8. Slower speed

A dehumidifier typically has more than one fan speed. Slower-speed machines are more economical and quieter but obviously, higher speed will result in more rapid extraction of moisture.

9. Less noisy machine

It is also worth checking if the dehumidifier is generating too much noise. If you want to have it running at night in the bedroom then make sure it runs quietly.

10. Operating temperature

You must check the operating temperature required to extract moisture at the desired rate. If you want to extract moisture from an unheated area then the desiccant models will give lower operating temperatures.

Tips to use a dehumidifier

  • To get the best from a dehumidifier, vacuum it beforehand to make it sure the irritating dust particles are not spreading around or the air filter is not getting clogged up (if the dehumidifier has one).
  • Set the machines away from the walls, furniture, and curtains.
  • Keep the doors and windows closed while the dehumidifier is running.
  • Empty the collected water out of the dehumidifier after every use and before moving it to another room.
  • Instead of repeatedly turning your dehumidifier on and off, you can let the dehumidifier do it itself to maintain your desired humidity level. Try to keep a room’s humidity somewhere in between 50-60 percent.

Types of Dehumidifiers

Whole Home Dehumidifier

The whole-home humidification system is the easiest and the most convenient method for adding or removing humidity from home. It checks the home for proper moisture content and then turns on the humidifier or dehumidifier as needed to bring the entire home atmosphere to the ideal humidity level. However, these dehumidifiers are more expensive and require regular maintenance.

Desiccant Dehumidifier

These dehumidifiers operate by passing the air through a rotor which contains moisture adsorbing desiccant material. Once water is removed from the air, there is a huge chance of drying as the dry air can be blown back into the building. Water collected within the desiccant wheel is removed by adding heat so the vaporized moisture can then be ducted out of the building.

The desiccant material is actually silica gel, which is a porous form of granular silica. The internal structure of the gel comprises a network of microscopic interconnected pores. This gel can adsorb moisture by attracting it within each granule. Due to added heat, this moisture can then be released from the desiccant by evaporation. Finally, it is pushed out of the building, leaving the desiccant wheel ready again to collect further moisture.

Refrigerant Dehumidifier

Damp air from within the building is drawn into the dehumidifier and passed over a cold evaporator coil which cools the air below its dew point temperature. This results in condensation. The water droplets formed on the cold coils then collect in a pan which has to be removed manually. Some dehumidifiers have a hose attached to them that automatically purge the water. The dry air then passes over warm condensing coils, which heat it up again before releasing out to the room.

Heat Pump Dehumidifier

Heat pump dehumidifiers remove moisture from the air with the help of a fan, heat pump, and heat exchange coils. By using a fan, the air is sent past the heat exchange coils that are extremely cold. These dehumidifiers provide excellent energy savings and comfort. By installing a heat pump dehumidifier, one can expect to save around 10 to 30 percent of energy cost.


If you do not want to welcome and host excess humidity in your home and other recurring problems associated with it, get a dehumidifier as soon as possible. However, before that, to make your buy worthwhile, get a damp/seepage assessment ( of your home done. There are reliable home inspection service providers who scientifically assess the moisture content of your home using advanced technology like thermal imaging. Based on their report, try to find the source and a permanent remedy for the humidity and damp problem. Alongside, invest in a dehumidifier. It will keep your home dry, fresh, and healthy for years to come.

Why Excess Moisture is a Threat to Your Home

Your home may not be as healthy as it looks from outside. Just like the human body, it is a multi-layered structure and there are a number of factors that determine its health. According to Jeffrey Toh (, a building materials and construction research scholar, all buildings start to deteriorate right from the moment they are completed. The most damaging of all the elements that lead to this deterioration is dampness, moisture, and humidity.

Moisture when contacts a cold surface condenses into water droplets. We may not be very conscious about the fact but all types of household activity- cooking, dishwashing, bathing, mopping, or washing clothes and drying them add moisture to the air filling our home. Even breathing, exhalation to be specific, by every living entity of the house adds moisture to the air! Now, the quantity of moisture that air can hold depends on its temperature. Warm air holds more moisture than cold air. During monsoon or winter, when the walls, doors, and windows become cold, the indoor moisture comes up against them and condenses into water droplets.

You may say, “How is it possible that such minuscule amount of moisture added into the air through our everyday activities cause our home to deteriorate?

Well, things wouldn’t have been this complicated had above elements been the only sources of moisture in our house. But there are many other sources which eventually increase the moisture content above its normal level. It is this excess moisture that leads to the dampness of the house.

The other sources of moisture in a house include:

  • External/ environmental:
    • Humid air from outside condensing into water droplets on coming in contact with cold surfaces in a building
    • Rainwater making its way through cracks and crevices on the walls and roofs of buildings
    • Groundwater
  • Infrastructural:
    • Mostly happens due to plumbing failure. For example, leakage in water pipes and drainage pipes, etc.

How does moisture lead to dampness?

As the moisture content inside the building structure rises, it accelerates the conditions for the chemical degradation of the concrete. Soon, the walls become porous and permeable to water, a condition known as damp.

Faulty construction practices and failed waterproofing are the main reasons behind moisture getting inside the fabric of a building and deteriorating it over the years.

While you can visibly check the external leakage and cracks, you cannot have an idea about the hidden construction faults. So, most of the time, your attempts to repair leakage or damp-affected areas either go in vain or leave the problem only half-solved. Therefore, going by the saying, “prevention is better than cure,” it is crucial to identify the main moisture generating places in your home. Once you have identified, you must try to reduce the amount of moisture generated there and check the condensation that happens thereafter.

Bathroom: The den of moisture in a house

The Bathroom is one of the most frequently used spaces of the house and undoubtedly, one of the most important ones too. Yet, humidity due to condensation makes it a villain of sort for causing dampness all over the house. Even a quick shower in the bathroom releases moisture into the air.

The problem becomes bigger whenever you take a hot shower because there is a lot of steam rising from the water. The steam mists up mirrors and glass panels or condenses on the walls. This keeps happening every day and that too, multiple times a day! If the place is not ventilated properly, or the wet surfaces are not wiped dry after each shower or wash, and/or there is no exhaust fan in the bathroom, this regular addition of moisture into the air can lead to severe dampness. The situation becomes worse if there is any of the below problems:

  • Loose bathroom faucet knob/handle
  • Dripping water tap
  • Leakage in the bathroom basin pipe
  • Poorly sealed joints between water taps and the walls
  • Internal leakage in the building water system
  • Damage geyser part/leaky pipe
  • Leaking hand-held shower hose/toilet jet spray
  • Damaged toilet flush valve
  • Water seepage

The continuous water loss from these damaged bathroom fittings adds to the moisture content of the house. Soon, signs of damp start showing up on the walls and ceilings in the form of dark, mouldy patches, flaky wall paint, and popped-up tiles. And this does not happen inside the bathroom only; the other parts of the building are affected too in varying intensity.

Why excess moisture is a threat?

It is not only the aesthetics of a building that is compromised due to damp. Left unresolved, it exposes us to bigger risks such as:

  • Extensive leakage & internal flooding leading to permanent dampness
  • Crumbling plaster & detachment from the lath
  • Compromised structural integrity of the building
  • Electrocution in the concealed electrical wiring system

Health risks of high indoor humidity

Experts opine that the optimal relative humidity level conducive to healthy living is between 35 and 60 percent. Beyond 60 percent, a place becomes excessively humid and a favourite breeding ground of harmful microorganisms like bacteria and viruses. Staying in such a place for long hours can expose you to potential health risks.

Growth of allergens

According to an Environmental Health Perspectives report, excess indoor moisture also leads to higher levels of dust mites, moulds, and fungi. Moulds begin to grow on wet surfaces in relative humidity levels above 75 percent, in as little as 24 hours. Once the moulds germinate, they begin to flourish rapidly producing spores and mycotoxins. Exposure to these mycotoxins causes allergies and respiratory inflammation in the inmates of the house. Ingesting certain mycotoxins can also lead to severe intestinal complications.

Mould spores are also potential allergens and are very difficult to eliminate. They lie dormant in a place for years and as soon as moisture content of that place rises, they start to flourish. Eliminating mould spores is virtually impossible unless their growing conditions are altered drastically.

Release of airborne chemical contaminants

Micro-organisms and allergens aren’t the only things that proliferate under excess humidity; airborne chemicals also increase as the indoor moisture level goes up.

Everyday indoor décor items like wood furniture pieces and carpets release noxious chemicals like formaldehyde, a process known as “off-gassing.” Exposure to even low levels of these chemicals can make you experience red, itchy skin, eye and throat irritation, and respiratory discomfort. The musty smell that fills the air in a damp house is mostly due to these airborne chemical contaminants.

How to eliminate excess moisture from home?

The first step to eliminating excess moisture is to ensure that the source of it is removed for good, and that is best done through waterproofing or damp-proofing.

By waterproofing or damp-proofing you can seal the unwanted water and prevent its further ingress. Then, with the onset of the dry season, the existing moisture content slowly decreases and your home springs back to life.

There are many advantages of waterproofing. Firstly, it enhances the value of your real estate property. And secondly, it sets the cornerstone on which you and your family can build a better quality of life.

However, detecting leakage or seepage that requires waterproofing isn’t an easy task. It is advisable to rely on professionals /home inspectors to do the job for you. They detect building-structure damps using advanced thermal imaging technology devices. Once detected with precision, you can proceed to do curing/waterproofing of only those areas. Otherwise, you may run the risk of making unnecessary expenses that may go up to as high as Rupees 50,000 to Rs. 100,000 approximately for a standard 1000 sq ft area space.

How to check condensation in the bathroom?

To reduce excess humidity in the house it is also crucial to check condensation in the bathroom because as explained earlier, it is the place where the maximum amount of moisture is generated.

The first step to check condensation in the bathroom is to address all plumbing-related issues. A timely repair of damaged bathroom fittings can save you big money on damp-proofing and/or waterproofing.

Besides, you must also ensure the below conditions to keep your bathroom dry and squeaky clean:

  • 1. Proper ventilation
  • 2. Wiping wet and fogged-up surfaces after each shower
  • 3. Using a dehumidifier
  • 4. Warming up the walls: Installing a bathroom heater can keep your bathroom warm without heating up the rest of your home wastefully.
  • 5. Using exhaust fan
  • 6. Incorporating design changes:
    • Surfaces that normally come in contact with water should be covered with tiles and/or glass so that water from splashing is prevented from being spread onto the adjacent surfaces.
    • The tiled surface on a wall should be high enough to block water from the shower.
    • Concrete walls made of porous material should be left un-tiled only in the upper parts and ceilings.
    • Provision should be kept for roof ventilators/windows to allow natural daylight in.
    • Non-slip tiles should be used to seal the surface below the floor from moisture.
    • The tiles must be grouted properly.
    • Bathroom walls should be coated with anti-condensation paint.

Moulds in the bathroom are difficult to remove. Don’t let this very important space in your home become a large petri dish for growing moulds. Get down to removing it at the very first sign of accumulation. You can use a baking soda-bleach-water solution or vinegar or hydrogen peroxide to clean the mould-affected areas. Regular use of the solution will give you better results.

Consult a home inspection expert for a long-term solution

Not all moisture related problems are DIY types. Some require complex solutions and hence, expert intervention.

Seek the help of a home inspection service provider like MACJ – A Buyers Choice. They will thoroughly diagnose your home using advanced, non-destructive testing methods and pinpoint the source of areas affected by excess moisture or damp. Based on their detailed report and suggestions, you can plan your next line of action.

Moisture is an important component of home atmosphere but when present in excess, it can severely hamper the quality of life. Don’t let the moisture take over your happiness. Get your home checked professionally the moment you smell it and live a healthy life in a damp-free house for the years to come.

Additional Notes for Information

Types of damp:

  • Construction damp: Happens due to poor construction practices. Sometimes, excess water that is added to the concrete mixture during construction bleeds out leaving behind capillary tracts in the wall. Water from the environment then makes its way through these tracts resulting in dampness.
  • Shrinkage is another commonly encountered problem in every cement-based construction. After completion, loss of moisture leads to the contraction in the total mass of a building leaving behind gaps. Later on, water from outside penetrates into these gaps resulting in (penetrating) damp.
  • Another form of penetration damp results when rain penetrates through the masonry due to poorly installed tiles or cracks on the wall.
  • Rising damp: Happens when moisture level rises up from the ground through the masonry to the height of about one metre of the building.
  • Condensation dampness: Results when a property is unable to deal with its normal moisture content due to the lack of proper insulation, ventilation or heating, or a combination of all of these things.

What is Waterproofing? | A Raincoat for your Home

Water infiltration into a home / building causes major problems to the structure. Water damages a building first cosmetically then structurally, results in building failure and most importantly the health of the residents. It is important to realize that by the time a stain shows up on the interior of your wall most likely irreversible damage is already caused to the exterior.

Before we get into the technicalities, allow us to explain you one simple thing. We wear a raincoat to protect ourselves from rain or water from wetting or drenching us, right? Waterproofing is the raincoat for a house.

Waterproofing is a system which prevents water (damp / water leakage / seepage / moisture) from penetrating into your house. As a raincoat keeps us dry, waterproofing / damp proofing is very important to keep our homes dry. It helps to reduce humidity inside the house and thereby protects things inside your house from damage caused due to humidity or water exposure. Waterproofing preserves the strength and the durability of concrete surfaces in a building.

Why is Waterproofing / Damp proof course (DPC) necessary?

Waterproofing increases your home’s value. It is one of the most critical, yet neglected concerns. Most of the time it is considered an inconvenience rather than a serious matter. Avoiding it will increase the problem & leave your wall damped.

1. Protects the Interiors from Water Damage

The inner part of your home is usually exposed to many unpredictable weather elements like sun rays and rains. This includes walls, floors, ceilings, etc. How much ever you try to get your walls sealed by using steel, concrete, etc., during the construction, they do crack and get rusted.

Water leakage / seepage or more categorically moisture intrusion in buildings results into damp, uncomfortable internal environments; deterioration of internal finishes (including mould growth); unsightly damp areas on wall and ceiling surfaces and increased concentrations of harmful pollutants affecting occupant’s health. The exclusion of moisture from buildings is therefore not only desirable, but an utmost concern to the residents of the buildings.

Waterproofing or damp proofing in buildings makes the structure water-resistant and helps in formation of a solid barrier over surfaces of foundations, roofs, walls and other structural members of building to prevent water penetrations through these surfaces. It helps in reducing the humidity inside the building, minimizing the damage done to structure, furniture, human health and alike.

2. Prevents Onset of Health Problems

Damp is a Silent Killer. Moisture and Humidity are the uninvited as well as unwanted guests which cause significant damage to your home and the ones living in it. When moisture finds its way to enter your walls and ceilings, it leads to the growth of mold and mildew. This creates spores, which leads to many health problems. Spores get projected into the air, and when you breathe in, they will straight away travel to your lungs that can cause health problems. Common health hazards include Upper respiratory (nasal and throat) symptoms, Asthma symptoms in sensitized persons with Asthma, Cough, Wheeze, Allergies, Skin Diseases, etc. It is always preferable to have waterproofing done to your home at the right time (usually at the time of construction / renovation / interior design), to keep you and your family away from such unexpected health problems.

3. Saves Your Money

Waterproofing your home might seem like a daunting task & a blow to your budget. But, prevention is always better than cure. It is best to think of it as a long term investment that will reap benefits in the building’s lifetime.

Few other Reasons why waterproofing is required for homeowners / property owners:

  • Prevents Frequent Leakages
  • Enhances the Durability of the Structure
  • Prevents hassles of repetitive Repairs
  • Minimizes Reoccurring Repairs & Maintenance Expenses
  • Puts an end to damaging of interiors
  • Avoids serious health issues arising out of dampness

Where should Waterproofing be done in a building?

Some homes include only basic waterproofing, which at times is only restricted to roofs, but it is imperative to have proper waterproofing done at all the water entry areas to make the home leak-free home.The home will be protected adequately only when all the possible water entry areas are waterproofed. The five key surfaces that are crucial for waterproofing are:

  1. Roof / Terrace
  2. Exterior Walls
  3. Internal Wet Areas (bathroom, kitchens, balconies)
  4. Concrete Water Tanks
  5. Structural components(Below and around ground structures)

Waterproofing Solutions & Materials

Water barrier of external walls is normally achieved by providing desired wall thickness, adequate designing at construction joints and surface rendering and finishes which serve as barrier against water seepage / moisture intrusion. But normally no attention is paid towards critical areas like separation gaps, honeycomb areas, damp proof courses and so on. This results in significant leakages through external walls and damages to expensive internal structure, furniture & equipment.

The leading waterproofing contractors / service providers / materials manufacturers in India include Dr Fixit, Fosroc, Dura, MasterSeal, Krytonite, BASF, Newcoat, Proofex, Sika, CICO Technologies, etc. There are some paint companies like Asian Paints, Berger Paints, Nerolac Paints, etc which also provide waterproofing solutions.


Water enters the building and can have immediate and long term undesired effects. Apart from damage to the building contents, structural damage is unavoidable if the problem persists. Further this can have serious adverse effect to human health.

The goal of building waterproofing is to prevent as much water as possible from penetrating into the house, and to provide outlets and drainage so that if water does get inside, it is not allowed to remain. Many designers while designing simply forget that there is going to be water.

”Sukanta Mallik, VP – R&D, CICO Technologies Ltd, says, “We do not suffer any lack of advanced system or materials, but mainly waterproofing problems plague us due to increasing complexity of construction, blatant disregard to most of the waterproofing principles, and also, inability to co-ordinate interfacing between the multitudes of construction systems involved in a single building.”

If you are still not convinced and you are a huge admirer of Mr. Amitabh Bachchan then kindly watch……

For more information on the subject and long term solutions, please also read our blog……