Damaged render bridging slate dpc
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Damaged render bridging slate dpc

by MorganB » Mon May 15, 2023 8:17 pm

Hi all,
I have done quite a bit of research but want to ask for my own specific scanario, any advice would be greatly appreciated. Our house is a Victorian railway red brick end terrace, and the front wall has an original brick plinth topped with Staffordshire blue but it has a render coat over the top. The other walls do not have the brick plinth and so I'm able to see that the render has bridged the line of the slate dpc. I have no way of knowing but I just have a hunch (from other works on the house) that it's cement render, and the front yard has also been concreted up to the wall.

Now, the reason I started looking into all this is that the render is cracking and breaking off in some sections (tapped around with a hammer and it's largely sound, it's coming off just in some areas where the frost got in) I'm aware all this is bad and ideally I'd break up the concrete, remove all the render and just have the brick. However, we're experienced renovators but with small kids and full time jobs and with one thing or another that big job just isn't going to happen this year. We also don't have any damp problems inside that have caused me to need to fix this, as of yet inside is absolutely fine.

As such, I'm trying to work out which make do and mend fix is the best for the house until we can do it properly. Should I patch the render, and if I do is there a set number of dry days or similar I need to wait to avoid trapping moisture in that will have got in through the breaks? (Some of this is from early last autumn so it's had all winter for the water to get in) And if I do am I just perpetuating a problem? I know technically everything that has been done on the wall since it's initial construction has been wrong, but it hasn't actually appeared to cause any problems with the house, and if it hasn't for 40,50 years, is it really that bad?

Or do I pull all the render off? This would be my preferred option as it's still a little 'further along' on the proper job of restoration, but from the bits that have broken off all the brick faces are damaged, and I mean really really damaged with some chunks of brick up to 7/8mm coming off with the render. If I expose them I'm worried I'll cause more harm than good leaving them over another winter until I have the chance to re-render. Even if I did re-render with lime I'm uncertain how that will play off with the yard having been concreted right up to the wall.

I'm inclined to consider another option - do I patch this year and save up to remove the render and brick slip it?

Any suggestions or thoughts would be appreciated.

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Re: Damaged render bridging slate dpc

by stoneyboy » Tue May 16, 2023 10:58 pm

Hi morganb,
I’m surprised that with patchy render and a bridged DPC you have not got internal damp issues. Perhaps the brick plinth is forming a 3rd layer of bricks.
There is little point in repairing the render especially if you are going to redo it at a later date. Hack off the existing render and allow the wall to dry out and to breathe if you don’t get to redo the render.
Regards S

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