Salt Damp Inspections for Preventative Maintenance

Posted on: 20 October 2021

One of the causes of breakdown in homes across Australia is salt damp. This type of issue can cause typical water damage and dampness through concrete flooring. It can also cause the concrete to break down and become brittle. This brittleness can lead to the damage of the house foundation and the walls. It can also allow the dampness to move into wood and cause wood rot. Before any of this happens, you can have a salt damp inspection done as part of your regular preventative maintenance. Here are a few key points to expect during this type of inspection. 

Residue Appearance

The first issue your inspector may notice is the rising residue from the dampness. This residue is called efflorescence. It appears on the top of the concrete and is a powder-like substance. It can be blown away or swept away. However, removing the residue does not stop the damage to the concrete. The residue is a sign that the salt damp is there and that the next steps in stopping the dampness need to be taken as soon as possible. 

Moisture Barrier

The moisture barrier is in place to help prevent salt damp and any dampness from reaching the concrete and staying in the area. The problem could be that the moisture barrier is damaged in some way. It may have a rip or damage to more than one area of the barrier. This will mean the barrier will need to be replaced. The replacement will need to be installed and may need to be of a higher durability depending on the severity of the dampness that is currently in the concrete and area. 

Removal of Salt

The area will need to be cleaned. The inspector will recommend a treatment plan for the area. Keep in mind, the first and most important step is to remove the salt from the area. This is because salt can change the freezing point of water. This may cause more damage than normal, and depending on how much salt is present, you may have the potential for severe water pooling and damage. Ideally, you will need to follow the inspector's course of treatment to bring the concrete back to its normal and most durable state. 

If you believe it is time for a salt damp inspection in your home, contact your local inspection service. They will schedule a time and date to examine your home. They can also answer any questions you have regarding the process or what to do if damage is found. If you have any other needs related to inspections and salt damp-related issues, you can ask the inspector during the consultation.