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17th century stone cottage


mike2020
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Hi just moved into 17th century cottage damp is a huge problem i want to fix this myself the floors are yorkstone which had ashfalt poored over them in the 1940's

The cottage is in the hills of west yorkshire on a bridleway i can't get a skip outside because of this.

I have a stone roof and iam in the process of replacing all the gutters back to original troughs

 

Appreciate any and all advice.

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Short term, sort the gutters and any other obvious potential sources of water ingress, then the general rule is: heat and ventilate!

Longer term, maybe need to look at DPM in the floor, external ground levels and dry-lining problem areas.

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8 hours ago, mike2020 said:

i can't get a skip outside because of this.

There are lots of waste collection companies around who'll come in and take away your rubbish, for a price, which is generally more than a skip costs. Here in Wales there's a government web page where you can look them up and check they have waste carrier's license 

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13 hours ago, Roundtuit said:

Short term, sort the gutters and any other obvious potential sources of water ingress, then the general rule is: heat and ventilate!

Longer term, maybe need to look at DPM in the floor, external ground levels and dry-lining problem areas.

 

 

I remember watching a TV documentary featuring the life-long struggle of an Irish Aristocrat to keep his inherited mansion from falling apart. His main advice was to view any old property as an upside down ship where the top priority was to eliminate water ingress from above i.e. start at the chimneys roof then work downwards.

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13 hours ago, mike2020 said:

Hi just moved into 17th century cottage damp is a huge problem

 

 

I think you need to quantify the damp problem with hard numbers before expending effort based on a hunch.

 

My first thought is that a newly occupied old property is going to shed moisture as it warms up. Why not wait until it reaches a new environmental equilibrium?

 

Another issue might be your perception of normality, if you have moved from a modern house with a low humidity level you might need to reset your expectation. Some forum members have resorted to retrofitting a device into their MVHR system to prevent humidity falling to an unhealthy level in their newly built high performance passiv house. Your new old house is providing that free of charge, which although said in jest this does illustrate you need to quantify the humidity & damp you are experiencing.

Edited by epsilonGreedy
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7 minutes ago, epsilonGreedy said:

 

I think you need to quantify the damp problem with hard numbers before expending effort based on a hunch.

 

My first thought is that a newly occupied old property is going to shed moisture as it warms up. Why not wait until it reaches a new environmental equilibrium?

 

Another issue might be your perception of normality, if you have moved from a modern house with a low humidity level you might need to reset your expectation. Some forum members have resorted to retrofitting a device into their MVHR system to prevent humidity falling to an unhealthy level in their newly built high performance passiv house. Your new old house is providing that free of charge, which although said in just this does illustrate you need to quantify the humidity & damp you are experiencing.

 Hi moved from a house built in the 1820's to this one built 1723 will buy a dampmeter and give exact numbers soon if that helps....

Previous owners had the damp work done in are previous house .

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  • 3 weeks later...

Now going toatlly a different way striping all the cement render and gypsum plaster off all the walls ....going with lime mortar lime render lime plaster and installing wall duct mounted dehumidifeirs upstairs and downstairs which work automatic to humidity rate..stripping all paint inside and outside including wood and using clay based paints only for walls and linseed oil based paints on all wood work. will use woodwool boards for insulation.

After getting a paid surveyor visit from english heritage surveyor cost £900 (well worth the money) he explained to me modern building techniques do not work on older buildings and are infact very harmfull all modern paints now contain plastic which basically trap moister in old stone buildings.

 

Cement render did not happen till the 1920,s (cheap)onward and also trap moisture gypsum plaster and gypsum plaster boards(cheap) are even more harmfull to older buildings the stone and the house needs to breathe.

Also will not be using any plastic fillers on wood etc will be using oakum.

 

Infact he said the whole damp proof industry in the uk is a rip off and does not exist in anyother first world country in the world....

 

For anyone else undertaking a similar project please read this article it's very educational.

https://www.heritage-house.org/damp-and-condensation/managing-damp-in-old-buildings.html

Fact traditional building methods pre 1920 work better than modern day methods on older stone buidings.

 

ps plz forgive any diction or spelling mistakes as english not my first language.

Edited by mike2020
spelling mistake
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Opinions differ but..

 

I reckon old houses lost more water vapour via ventilation rather than permeating through walls. So draughts are sealed up with double glazing and door seals the humidity rises. I reckon old houses might benefit from the constant ventilation provided by an MVHR system. 

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Sounds like you have a plan, I would second what @Temp says about ventilation, when I moved into my two up to down 120 year old house it had not been upgraded much at all, it still had open fires in every room, big gaps under doors etc. The windows had been upgraded in the 80s by the look of them but the gaps around the outside made the double glazing pointless. There was no sign of mould in the house. As soon as I sealed all the obvious gaps up, including two of the fires the place became very damp and mould became a problem. It was a real battle to get the ventilation balance right but when I did the house dried up. There was NO insulation anywhere. Fast forward 10 years (and a lot of BIG) heating bills and I have finally got the inside insulated. This winter will be the first with insulation and I will now need to  work out the new ventilation requirements. I have not gone down the traditional route…….

 

 

 

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I agree with most above .

but before you can make any definitve decisions 

how are the walls constructed -is it one layer of stone and mortar  or inner and outer walls and rubble in the middle  how thick are the walls 

 

do you have lathe and plaster interior walls ? or hard plaster 

 

If you have rooms large enough the right answer is to build a wood frame  house inside it with a gap to wall and a vapour barrier and insulate in that framing  - so your inside wall can breathe into this void .

there will be no DPC and maybe not real foundations --so rising damp will always be there - to some extent 

 

 

 

 

Edited by scottishjohn
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On 16/10/2021 at 23:22, Roundtuit said:

Longer term, maybe need to look at DPM in the floor, external ground levels and dry-lining problem areas.

dry ling with a clear path into  the roof space so it has somewhere to vent the mositure to -just dry lining and area  and sealing will not work --it must have a clear path  for it to move out of the building 

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58 minutes ago, scottishjohn said:

I agree with most above .

but before you can make any definitve decisions 

how are the walls constructed -is it one layer of stone and mortar  or inner and outer walls and rubble in the middle  how thick are the walls 

 

do you have lathe and plaster interior walls ? or hard plaster 

 

If you have rooms large enough the right answer is to build a wood frame  house inside it with a gap to wall and a vapour barrier and insulate in that framing  - so your inside wall can breathe into this void .

there will be no DPC and maybe not real foundations --so rising damp will always be there - to some extent 

 

 

The walls are solid sandstone no cavitys walls about 18 inch thick going smaller around windows to about a foot thick, no lathe the previous owners took all the lime render and lime plaster off the walls big no no in building this age, iam in the process of taking all gysum plaster and cement render off the walls and will render with lime render and plaster.

have been told by heritage england recommended surveyor stear clear of all modern building methods .

absolutely no dry lining killer in houses this age.

 As far as dpc for the floors we currently have yorsktone floors which had asphalt poored over them in the 1940's undecided what to do with them yet.

 

Quote

 

 

Edited by mike2020
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Thinking of putting a simple vent front and back in the roof space now this is a method used in america i lived their for a while and this was a common method used there.

Will be switching the current roof insulation out for a more traditional sheep wool mix which should allow the roof to breathe also.

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so you say its made from  cut sandstone blocks  each is 18" thick 

any pictures --

 I would have thought cost of cut sandstone blocks at that thickness would be too expensive for a cottage

 If you are right you should be able to see shapes of stone work on inside and outside

Edited by scottishjohn
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5 hours ago, scottishjohn said:

so you say its made from  cut sandstone blocks  each is 18" thick 

any pictures --

 I would have thought cost of cut sandstone blocks at that thickness would be too expensive for a cottage

 If you are right you should be able to see shapes of stone work on inside and outside

Links in thread

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https://www.heritage-house.org/damp-and-condensation/managing-damp-in-old-buildings.html Why do people on this forum think one fix fits all..... gypsum plaster and cement render and modern day paints are death to older ie 300 yr houses, dry lineing is bs !

Rising damp is also bs also they have built houses on stilts in holland for 500 yrs no damp problem .

 

The uk is the only first world country in the world with a damp proof industry worth billions a year its all BS. i will post this link again on the thread if you have something to say please be contructive not bs which is ninety percent of replies ie scottish john

 

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1 hour ago, Roundtuit said:

 That doesn't seem to be quite the case, but hey ho.  At least we've got a newly-minted damp expert to call on.

Dry lining a 300 yr old house agreed...No expert but i bow to you rounduit as you have more experience than me.

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Maybe more experience of living in a damp house, but I'm no expert.  I've read your link, and there's some really interesting thoughts in there.   Every day's a school day!  No-one's deliberately feeding you BS; ask for advice and if you're lucky you'll get some.  It's up you to filter it.

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15 hours ago, mike2020 said:

https://www.heritage-house.org/damp-and-condensation/managing-damp-in-old-buildings.html Why do people on this forum think one fix fits all..... gypsum plaster and cement render and modern day paints are death to older ie 300 yr houses, dry lineing is bs !

Rising damp is also bs also they have built houses on stilts in holland for 500 yrs no damp problem .

 

The uk is the only first world country in the world with a damp proof industry worth billions a year its all BS. i will post this link again on the thread if you have something to say please be contructive not bs which is ninety percent of replies ie scottish john

 

that is your opinion -and not show9ng us pictures of what you have will not help you to get any advice - and makes me suspect you do not know exactly how your walls are constructed

and therefore the correct way to tackle damp once and for all-.

 for sure hard rendering of any sort onto them will not 100%stop the damp problem if you do not have an air gap to your living  heated area walls and a clear vent path for the moisture out of the building

no problem to me if you wish to abuse my opinions -

-I know how I am going to sort similar if not bigger problems on my project 

 

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13 hours ago, mike2020 said:

Dry lining a 300 yr old house agreed...No expert but i bow to you rounduit as you have more experience than me.

and that is nothing like strictly true .

I have a granite house -rubble walls  700mm thick

wall then vertical timbers attached to stone work with an approx 40mm gap -on top of which lathe and plaster 

 that gap goes from under the floor right up to the roof space  built in 1730

 that is dry lining

  unfortunately they did not have vapour barriers -- so it was big drafty passge --but the interior  walls for the most part are perfect  but I would not want to heat the building without some insulation 

-only where the roof has collapsed has there been any water ingress to the lathe and plaster and ceilings 

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