damp proofing cost

How Much Does Damp Proofing Cost? (2021 UK Price List)

Have you discovered an issue with damp in your home? Whether it be a slight musty smell, an obvious patch of mould or a tide mark, it’s time to tackle the problem.

But how do you know if you need a full damp-proof course? What is it, and how much does damp proofing cost? In this guide, we’ve got everything you need to know when it comes to the cost of damp-proofing in the UK.

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Problems That Damp Can Cause

identifying damp

How do you know if you have damp? Apart from the obvious, there are certain things to look out for. Although, the signs may indicate that it’s not so much a small problem that can be resolved yourself, but rather a big issue that might need the aid of a professional.

Patches of black mould are a huge giveaway and can cause respiratory issues over the long term. Other indications of a problem with damp include peeling paint or wallpaper, crumbling skirting boards, tidemarks and salty deposits on the walls or floor.

Left untreated, a serious issue with damp can affect the structure and stability of your property.

Different Types of Damp

Before deciding whether your property needs damp-proofing, you need to determine what type of damp it is, the cause of the issue, and what you might be able to do to counteract it. 

There are three different types of damp; condensation, penetrating damp or rising damp. Unless you know for definite where the problem originates, it’s a good idea to go through a process of elimination first, to avoid any excessive and unnecessary expense.



With condensation being the easiest problem to resolve, it’s the obvious place to start. Without proper ventilation, moisture builds within your home or property, resulting in mould spores and mildew.

Simple things like opening windows more often, drying clothes outside rather than in, and using extractor fans in bathrooms and kitchens will help to reduce the level of moisture in the air.

According to Which? simply keeping your heating on constant at a lower temperature can help prevent damp. You could also invest in a dehumidifier to reduce and control humidity.

Penetrating Damp

interior decay

As the heading suggests, there’s water coming in somewhere it’s not supposed to be. This could be caused by a range of problems, some of which can be rectified and prevented from happening in the first place. 

Things you can check include guttering and down-pipes. Blockages can cause rainwater to bypass pipes, resulting in prolonged contact with the external walls.

Furthermore, there may be hairline cracks in the rendering or brickwork, and moisture seeping into the structure of the building can cause significant damage

If your property has a cavity wall, there may be debris lodged between the outer and inner walls, creating a bridging effect. Similarly, cavity wall insulation could also pass moisture to the inner walls where the outer wall has deteriorated through driving wind and rain. 

Other causes of penetrating damp might be leaks in the roof from missing slate or tiles. Internally, you could have an issue with a leaking pipe, cracks in the tiles or grout, or leaks from the shower or bath.

Rising Damp

flaking paint on the exterior wall indicating rising damp

Rising damp is generally caused by moisture below the ground which rises up and seeps into the walls. Though relatively uncommon, it is an issue that can cause complications and be the most problematic to deal with.

damp proof course guide

Check your existing damp-proof course around the outside of the house, which should sit 150mm/6″ above ground level (see diagram above).

Building regulations made them compulsory for all houses built after 1875, so if your property was built before then, it may not have one. There should be a thin strip or a grill at the base of the wall to indicate the presence of the DPC. 

If the soil level is higher than the damp-proof course, this will need to be dug out again. Similarly, if a patio has been installed above the DPC, this will need lowering.

Damp Proofing Costs in 2021

If condensation, leaky guttering or missing roof tiles have been eliminated as the cause of the issue, you’ll need to consider other options. The type of treatment you need will undoubtedly depend on the severity of the problem. 

Penetrating damp through porous bricks can be treated with a limewash or silicone water-repellent, still allowing the walls to breathe, but if there is an interim issue such as wet cavity wall insulation, this will need to be resolved prior to any application. 

Rising damp can be resolved by injecting a damp-proof course (DPC) chemical gel or paste into the base of the walls, at a minimum of 15cm/6″ above ground.

It’s worth bearing in mind that depending on the severity of the problem and whether the floor is affected, it might be a case of repairing the existing damp proof course and membrane.

A chemical DPC is generally the most cost-effective and DIY-friendly type of damp proofing. The water-repelling chemical paste or cream is injected directly into the wall along the mortar-course, as demonstrated in the video below. A quality DPC should be effective in preventing damp from creeping up the wall; IF this is the root problem of the issue.

Chemical DPC – Can You Do It Yourself?

While it is possible to attempt to do this yourself, personally I would recommend hiring a professional. If you did decide to DIY, you can expect to pay around £20 for a 310ml Dryzone cartridge – or around £30 for a 600ml cartridge – and should follow the instructions very carefully.

Bear in mind that you may also need to remove and replace existing plaster and consider the costs associated with this.

To work out the quantity of chemical DPC you may need, use the table below as a guide. Prices and figures obtained from householdquotes.co.uk.

Width of WallQuantityArea Covered
4.5″ single wall1 litre9m2
9″ thick cavity or double solid wall1 litre4.5m2 (double if required on both sides)
8″ thick filled or solid wall1 litre2m2

Other Tools You Will Need

  • Safety Goggles
  • Dust Mask
  • Electric Hammer Drill & Masonry Drill Bit (12mm)
  • Skeleton Gun (400cc or 1000cc)
  • Plastering Materials

For a step-by-step guide to installing a DPC cream, check out this guide from Skilled Build.

Before rushing out and stocking up on chemical DPC and other tools, it’s best to be sure on the course of action you need to take. If you’ve checked everything and still can’t determine the exact cause of the problem, and aren’t confident in tackling the issue yourself, what’s the next step? 

If you want to go direct to a damp-proof specialist, you might want to look at getting an independent damp survey done first, which will cost between £150 – £300.

A surveyor will be able to conduct an investigation and discover the cause. They’ll also advise on a course of action and estimate costs, thus avoiding any potentially unnecessary and extensive work. At this point, you can then contact a professional to complete the work required.

For the more common problems and resolutions when it comes to rising and penetrating damp, the table below provides an insight into the type of costs you could you be facing. The data indicate costs for soil excavation and laying any external surfaces, new DPC, and silicone injection into the walls.

Prices sourced from homeadviceguide.com and will vary depending on your location within the country as well as the size of your property and the work required.

Problem: Ground level higher than the existing damp proof course

Work RequiredProperty TypeCost
Ground excavation – one wallTerraced£200
Detached £450
Ground excavation – whole houseTerraced£330
Semi-Detached £540
Detached £1,300
Ground excavation & installing gravel path – one wallTerraced£270
Semi-Detached £395
Detached £585
Ground excavation & installing gravel path – whole houseTerraced£350
Semi-Detached £820
Ground excavation & installing concrete slabs – one wallTerraced£400
Semi-Detached £690
Detached £1,400
Ground excavation & installing concrete slabs – whole houseTerraced£760
Semi-Detached £1,890
Detached £4,190
Ground excavation & installing a concrete path – one wallTerraced£430
Semi-Detached £750
Detached £1,190
Ground excavation & installing concrete path – whole houseTerraced£850
Semi-Detached £2,110
Detached £4,040

Problem: Damaged (or non-existent) DPC

Work RequiredProperty TypeCost
Silicone injection damp proofing – one wallTerraced£490
Semi-Detached £760
Detached £2,000
Silicone injection damp proofing – whole houseTerraced£900
Semi-Detached £2100
Detached £4700
Insert new damp-proof course – one wallTerraced£290
Semi-Detached £425
Detached £610
Insert new damp-proof course – whole houseTerraced£395
Semi-Detached £920
Detached £2,060

Tips for Obtaining a Quotation

  • Get at least 3 different quotations for the work required
  • Ask for a breakdown of the costs involved, especially if there will be additional/remedial work such as re-plastering or paving installation
  • Ask for testimonials and reviews – quality experts receive positive reviews, helping you avoid unnecessary work and expense.

Don’t fancy doing this job yourself?

Then find top-rated damp proofing specialists in your area by clicking the button below:

Final Thoughts

The above information should help to determine the root of your problem and decipher the level of work required to make your home fully damp-proof. If there is an underlying issue of damp in your property, just papering over the cracks (so to speak) won’t solve the problem. 

If you’re a property expert or DIY enthusiast, you might be confident enough to attempt a chemical injection DPC. But for a big job that requires a professional, contact Rated People

Have you had experience with damp before? What was the outcome? Let us know in the comments below, and if you liked this article, please share.