Damp proofing and woodworm treatment

The Company

Kenwood Damp-Proofing plc are leading damp-proofing and timber treatment specialists and I used the company to do the damp-proofing work at my old flat.  Oh, and they've got recommendations from Honor "Pussy Galore" Blackman and Barbara Windsor in their brochure so they must be alright!

The Work

We arranged for Kenwood to do a survey of the house on Saturday 9 December 2006.  Luckily they said that the damp-proof course was adequate and didn't need replacing.  Well, it's one less thing to include in the budget.

However evidence of Woodworm Infestation (Anobium punctatum) was found to be present in the roofing timbers.

Kenwood recommended carrying out treatment to the roofing timbers by pressure application of a timber preservative to all accessible timbers, which involves applying an insecticide to all accessible rafters, purlins, struts, hips, tie beams, trusses and ridge boards.  No, I'm not sure what half of those things are either!

As a precautionary measure and due to the fact that the inspection was limited, they also suggested that the remaining areas of the property be treated.  Given that this was only an extra £125 and would mean that the guarantee would cover the whole property, we decided to go ahead with this.

This bascially involved the same application of insecticide to the sub floor voids on the ground and first floor and treatment to the staircase.

Although Kenwood's survey found the damp-proof course to be adequate, they did note that the sub-floor ventilation was inadequate.  As a result they recommended that 2 further terracotta air bricks be installed.

The Results

This was the first work that we actually had done to the house, so it was a big moment for us!  Kenwood were due to turn up at 10am on Saturday 20 January 2007, but we got a call at 8.45am saying that they were a bit early.  So we jumped out of bed and rushed over to the house.

Two workmen were there waiting for us on the doorstep surrounded by piles of equipment and material, ready to crack on with the work.

In order to mix up the pesticide so that it could be sprayed around the house, they needed a water supply.  Not a problem you'd think, however everything is a problem with this house!  Our water supply had been cut off, so at 9 o'clock on a Saturday morning I had to sheepishly knock on the door of a neighbour and ask if they wouldn't mind filling up a large selection of buckets for us!  Luckily the neighbours at number 36 were very friendly and despite opening the door still dressed in their pyjamas, agreed to fill up our buckets. 

We figure we should go round and give them a bottle of wine as thanks.  I'm sure we will, but just in case we need to ask for their help with anything else, I think we'll wait for a while otherwise we might be supplying them with a whole new wine cellar!

Anyway, the woodworm treatment is not something you want to hang around for so we left the workmen to it and came back an hour later and it was all finished.

Unfortunately we didn't take photos of the work while it was in progress, but here are the pictures of the newly installed air bricks!

 So here's the air brick on the left of the house...


 ...and here's the one on the right!

Of course, it's not much to look at but it's the first step of many more.