Renewing a dpc the old way

Discussion in 'Building' started by Barrysh, Aug 23, 2018.

  1. Barrysh

    Barrysh

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    Hi, way back in the 70's when I bought my first terraced house the front wall was a bit damp. My dad, who was a retired brickie, took out a full course of internal bricks, about 3 at a time, cleared the cavity, put in a new dpc and bricked it back up. It cured the damp and it never returned. Couple of generations on my son has bought an ex council house with the same problem. I know the modern way is to pressure inject the brickwork to form a dpc but is there any reason why I can't tackle it the way my dad did. I know it's time consuming but I'm retired with plenty of time on my hands. Must be cheaper too, just a bit of mortar if the bricks can be reused. I might be way off the mark here but is there any reason why I can't simply cut out a mortar joint with a concrete saw, renew the dpc and cement it back up, again only 3 or 4 bricks at a time. Thanks for your time. Barry
     
    Barrysh, Aug 23, 2018
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  2. Barrysh

    Retired

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    Hi,

    I did a similar job due to water penetration in our garage; I went over the top though to ensure it wouldn't happen again. As you suggest I removed 3 or 4 bricks at a time but I used my big SDS drill in chisel mode simply chopping through the bricks because no way would I reuse old soaking wet bricks; whilst the bricks were out I spent a lot of time cleaning out the cavity bottom allowing the outer wall to be pointed from the inside; it was the outer wall to foundation joint that was seeping so I raked the joint out and pointed using a strong mix. This cured the leak at source but to ensure water could never get through again I added plastic oval conduit having drilled lots of holes in it; this fitted very neatly into the cavity laid on the clean foundation; I then covered the top of the conduit with Flashband to prevent new mortar dropping onto the conduit; the conduit was continued in sections to the outer wall at the garage front where I added a 15mm copper pipe as a drain which would allow any future water to escape freely. I didn't just knock out a single section of bricks at a time I left pillars to support the wall allowing more sections of bricks to be knocked out saving many days time.

    https://www.screwfix.com/p/oval-conduit-2m-x-20mm-white/93233#_=p

    Above is the conduit I used having drilled many small holes into it;

    https://www.screwfix.com/p/flashband-bostik-flashband-flashband-grey-10-x-100mm/57969

    Above is the flashband tape I added over the top of the conduit and bedded into the mortar joint between wall and foundation.

    New DPC was added and new best quality engineering bricks were used to replace the sodden old bricks. Not content with this I also considered the new mortar and a bit of online research revealed mortar can be made waterproof so I bought the liquid adding as instructed to the mortar mix; I'm confident I've cured the water ingress problem once and for all; I've got images of the job but at the moment am unable to locate the file; even with the cost of the new bricks; mortar; DPC and mortar waterproofing the job was actually quite cheap but as usual for me it was hard graft. I'm too tired to do anything having been on the go since 6 o'clock this morning and I knocked off at 8 o'clock tonight; 70 years old and still ultra busy; if I can find the images I'll be happy to post them because this water ingress and damp problems is so common.

    Lots of people with basements or garages like ours beneath the soil level go the "tanking" route but I disagree with this because it doesn't solve the problem only put up a barricade which I'm sure will fail at some time in the future?

    I'm sure you're aware the dangers of removing bricks so take it steady and don't have the wall collapse on you.

    Kind regards, Colin.
     
    Retired, Aug 25, 2018
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  3. Barrysh

    Barrysh

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    Jeez Colin after all that work you deserve a dry wall. Hope it stays that way for you.
     
    Barrysh, Aug 25, 2018
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  4. Barrysh

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    Hi,

    Thanks Barry; I'm confident I've put the problem to bed once and for all; it's not the kind of work I enjoy but I never ever take the easy option. I've found a few of the pictures and also a few pictures of drain repairs I carried out. Whenever I do anything I always think back to my apprentice days where I was taught to think for myself never accepting anything just because its been done a certain way for 100 years; take it back to basics and see if it can be improved upon; I applied this to both the garage water ingress and the drain repairs dreaming up new ideas. The use of perforated plastic conduit placed in the wall cavity bottom is my idea and should any water enter the cavity it will discharge harmlessly onto our driveway.

    The drain repairs are to the rear of our bungalow; we were fed up of the open drain hoppers collecting debris and slugs also they tended to smell. The old drains were the heavy clay ware kind. Applying a lot of thought I came up with the idea of disposing of both hoppers and install a sealed system as seen below in the pictures; inside the bungalow we have an automatic vent to the 4" dia soil pipe.

    Both these jobs were hard graft; the garage floor slopes so this caused bricklaying problems; I ended up buying a diamond disk for my big angle grinder allowing me to slice through the dense engineering bricks. I'm not smart or clever I was just taught by top engineers whom I owe so much to.

    Later we suffered water ingress under the bungalow and I cured this the hard way installing underground flood defences which proved to be another big job; for this I bought a brand new cement mixer; kept the mixer for six weeks then sold it on after completing the work only losing about £30 making it much cheaper and more convenient than hiring which I never do.

    Hope it's of interest.

    Kind regards, Colin.

    Drain repairs to patio area (1).JPG
    New drain by rear door.

    Drain repairs to patio area (2).JPG

    Both new drains fully sealed; kitchen outlets into single drain; much better than the original open smelly drains. I laid the big paving flags when I retired; leaving a wide mortar joint allows individual flags to be lifted if ever needed. It pays to give a great deal of thought to any job trying to improve for the better.

    Drain repairs to patio area (4).JPG
    It's not difficult to improve on this but requires quite a bit of thought coming up with new ideas. Definitely not a job for a novice to tackle it could prove hugely expensive if it went wrong.

    Drain repairs to patio area (10).JPG
    New into old; please note old clay pipe end removed with angle grinder and new black rubber coupler. Pipe end sealed during work using old towel to prevent debris entering and blocking it.

    Drain repairs to patio area (15).JPG
    The old hopper by the rear door designed to collect lots of smelly debris and slugs.

    Garage water ingress (1).JPG
    Garage water ingress work under way to resolve it. Please note bricks left in place to support the wall; these were removed once the new engineering bricks were in place and had a couple of days for the mortar to harden; waterproof mortar was used.

    Garage water ingress (3).JPG
    Engineering bricks going in; please note end of white plastic conduit to cavity bottom this leading to the driveway. The 15mm copper discharge pipe connected to the conduit still remains dry; it's a job I only ever want to do once.

    Garage water ingress (4).JPG
    Removing more bricks at a time would be asking for trouble.

    Garage water ingress (5).JPG
    Resorting to solid dense engineering bricks needing cutting to accommodate floor slope. New DPC also going in.

    Garage water ingress (6).JPG

    It doesn't take much to improve on this sorry state of affairs. I hadn't realized how bad it was until I pulled the benches away from the wall. The bricks were absolutely saturated being porous.
     
    Retired, Aug 26, 2018
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  5. Barrysh

    Barrysh

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    Very impressive Colin. My problem is that my son lives 200 miles away from me and I will only be able to spend 3 days with him including the travel. He is actually an archiologist but I have never seen him with a shovel in his hand. Keyboard yes screwdriver no. Like you I did a 5 year apprenticeship back in the day but unfortunately as an electrician not a builder.
     
    Barrysh, Aug 26, 2018
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  6. Barrysh

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    Hi,

    It's amazing these days Barry how many are proficient with a keyboard but are unable to knock a nail in; it's makes me wonder just how far we've progressed since homes have computers?

    My apprenticeship was in mechanical engineering but the skills I was taught can be applied to just about anything.

    Driving 200 miles these days is a stressful job and I don't envy you; just breaking clear of Huddersfield with all its road closures; detours; traffic calming and speed humps wears me out; I've seen it take two and a quarter hours just to travel 38 miles; quicker on foot? During my biking days I could ride to London and back in a morning with the speedo needle off the clock almost 200 miles each way but it would be suicide today given the volume of traffic.

    Kind regards, Colin.
     
    Retired, Aug 27, 2018
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  7. Barrysh

    PatagualFixer

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    Colin.... You said exactly what I was going to reply to Barrysh....I too wonder where we are going with all this reliance on keyboard "skills"....
    A friends son had a puncture on his push-bike.....the bike stood idle for months....until his dad told him to get his finger out and asked him: "What are you going to do in the future when some small job needs sorting in your house?" The lad replied: "I'll get someone in."
    Just so sad eh?


    As for the stresses & strains of driving these days in the UK: I was over there a few months back... I just could not believe how far driving skills have slipped....or how bad the delays were. My Dad lives in Hollingworth....bottom of the Woodhead Pass road from to M1 to Manchester: 40 years arguing over a by-pass.... 2 hours, at times to get from the M67 to Glossop...a distance of 2.5 miles.
    (Being in Huddersfield you may have been stuck in that mess yourself at some time!)

    Incidentally: What's that Motorbike in the picture? (It's a bit hazy)
    I had several Triumphs in my day.
    Kind regards....and keep up the good work.....
     
    PatagualFixer, Sep 4, 2018
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  8. Barrysh

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    Hi,

    Thanks for your reply PatagualFixer; I'm surprised though your friends son has a push bike; I thought these days all kids mums ran them around in mums Chelsea Tractor;

    https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Chelsea Tractor

    We have local schools nearby and its a nightmare whilst parents drop kids off; one morning I followed one of these bix 4x4's 100 yards from the school to where the kids home was; still it is very steep around here and we don't want to tire kids out these days?

    Mentioning Hollingworth brings back memories of my biking days especially Hollingworth Lake. The bike in the picture was my pride and joy it being a BMW R75/5 750cc; this was my first BMW bought secondhand at one year old; I traded it in a year later and bought a brand new BMW of the same model but kitted it out with Full fairing; crash bars; tank bag and one of the first bikes to have a car radio installed this around 1972; both these BMW's were ridden flat out with the speedo needle against the stop; of course these days it would mean a short life span but back then such speed was common to bikers; I was so proud of my BMW's and when I bought the new one at the time I could have bought a terrace house for the money but instead of a 25 year mortgage I took finance on the bike over three years meaning I worked seven days a week without holidays just to pay for it; rather like now because I've just put an 11 hour day in grafting installing our new entrance.

    I'm now a dinosaur but I've certainly lived; aged 18 I had a 1,000cc bike it being an Ariel square Four which was rubbish; I blew it up on the M6 just outside Preston destroying the engine internally; I've ridden many types of bikes including Triumph's; here's a couple of bike images and a car image; I wonder how many have ridden a Brough Superior; I owned a Norton Atlas which was rubbish; every time it hit 110mph it shattered its piston skirts. The car is an exact copy of "EEB 88" I used to own; I hope it still survives; as I say though I worked flat out in order to own decent bikes and cars; the BMW's though really were tops.

    Here's a short video showing a BMW R75/5. I too always had a huge smile on my face.



    Enough for now I'm tired out.

    Kind regards, Colin.

    Austin Healey..JPG
    A clone of my Austin Healey.

    BMW meeting approx 1973 (2).jpg
    BMW club outing around 1973.

    Colin on Brough Superior.jpg

    Very rare now; a Brough Superior I had the privilege to borrow.
     
    Retired, Sep 4, 2018
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