DIY Doctor

Cold / Wet Patches in new Property upstairs Only

Postby darkglobe87 » Sat Nov 09, 2019 10:12 am

Hi all. New to the forum so I hope I'm posting in the correct place and please give me a nudge if I'm doing anything wrong, ta.

My wife and I just bought our first house. We didn't get a survey done as we couldn't afford it. We viewed the house three times: once in a summer, once well into the following winter and we came back again once we'd bought it, which was after that winter and at the start of summer just gone. There were absolutely no signs of damp or mould. Current owners have had it about 3.5 years. It's a mishmash: they've done lots of work to the place, but left lots untouched. Cavity wall insulation was put in before they owned it, I think around 6 years ago (we have certificates), so I'm guessing and hoping it's unlikely to be anything to do with that.

Anyway... Some background on the house. It's a 1930s semi-detached house that has been rendered on the outside (well, pebbledashed I believe it's called. Rough surface painted white), with plain bricks for the first foot or two (painted in a heavy duty looking black stuff).

We have no damp or mould downstairs whatsoever. Nothing around any of the windows either. Slight condensation on the windows, and fairly bad condensation on the sliding doors but these are in the kitchen so it's to be expected. Kitchen has extractor fan.

Upstairs we have 3 bedrooms and a bathroom. Bedroom 1 at the front adjoining the neighbour's house is fine. Dry, no particularly cold patches on the ceiling (one of 2 artexed ceilings). No condensation on windows at all.

Bedroom 2 (master, back of house) seems to be developing a fairly stealthy discolouration where the ceiling meets the wall. It's bloody freezing to the touch along most of the coving. Everything else fine.

Bedroom 3 (current storage, back of house but 2 exterior walls) has a VERY wet patch in the corner of the room. It's soaking to the touch on the traingle bit in the corner of the room (sorry dunno what it's called) and has spread down on to the wall. It's very wet.

Bathroom (front of house, two exterior walls) has the same issue as bedroom 3, in the corner triangle bit. It's quite damp and paint is bubbling. The bathroom has generally peely paint all over, I'm guessing the wrong type of paint may have been used or something. We always open the windows when showering and we have an extractor above the shower.
However, the bathroom also has one completely random wet patch further into the room (away from corner of house but still along front wall). See pic. I've never noticed it before (lived here 4 months) but I'm now looking for things after noticing damp walls. It's also raining pretty heavily now.

Things I've done: looked at guttering from ground level. Doesn't seem to be anything wrong with guttering at front of house. Back of house our side seems fine, but the guttering does join on to the neighbour's and his is full of moss and grass it looks like, fairly close to where the discolouration is in bedroom 2. However it is all flowing nicely down our downpipe.
I'm no roofer but I've noticed nothing obviously wrong with the roof from a cursory ground level inspection.

Looking at where the chimney is and where an air vent is in bedroom 1 on a slightly less than perfect looking wall (non damp room) I'm guessing there was a fireplace upstairs at some point. I may be wrong. Doubt it's relevant as it's in the centre of the house where there's no issue.

I can't think of much else to do. We've saved like crazy to get this house and we'v moved from a rented 1950s terrace that never got warm which was riddled with damp and black mould. This house so far as I hell of a lot warmer, drier and generally nicer, but I am now concerned that we'll end up with mould here. I wiped and I wiped in the old house but it ALWAYS returned. I'm hoping this is an easy fix.

Just to note, I have extremely easy access to the loft. It's cavernous so I can look for signs up there but ideally need to know what I'm looking for beforehand as it's only partially boarded and I'll need to concentrate on navigating, as there are a lot of pipes (for some reason the boiler is up there).

I don't know if this is like other forums but please save the survey lectures. I'm well aware of the risk I took. Everything seems sound on visual inspection, the houses around it all also seem in decent nick, it's warm, mostly dry and apart from one crack I don't like, seems solid. We took a punt.
darkglobe87
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