Cavity wall insulation nightmare?

Cavity wall insulation nightmare?

10:53 AM, 6th January 2021, About 5 months ago 15

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Hi, I own a ground floor flat as a leaseholder that is part of a large 2-storey block. Before I bought the property 5 years ago the management company had cavity wall insulation installed (around 10 Years ago) I now have two walls that run with condensation and has black mould growing all winter.

It seems to get worse every year. Speaking to a few people and with what I have read, they seem to think that the damp-proof may have been bridged and now the insulation must be soaking.

I contacted my management company who says it’s nothing to do with them and can’t help me as the company is no longer is trading. Surely they must be liable to have it removed as they had it fitted in the first place. I’m in the process of getting a quote to have it removed, then hope to go back to them once I know the costs involved.

Is there anything I can do to get them to either have it removed or pay for it, if I have it removed. Could I take them to the small claim court for instance?

Thanks

Alan



Comments

by TrevL

19:19 PM, 6th January 2021, About 5 months ago

The management company is generally appointed to manage the building on behalf of the leasholders and is funded by the service charges levied on each unit in the block......if they have ceased trading, who is now managing your block? Thats the first question?

Depending on who installed the damp-proofing you may have an option to claim on their professional indemnity insurance, but that would require the management company who appoited them to tell you who it is.

You may be able to pursue the freeholder, depending on your lease document that should define ownership and maybe even covernants to the leaseholders. IThe freeholder probably owns the structure of the building. But there are no garentees......a solcitor or building surveyor may be able to provide proffessional advice.

by Beaver

8:49 AM, 7th January 2021, About 5 months ago

Is it actually possible to have cavity wall insulation removed?

by Laura Delow

9:02 AM, 7th January 2021, About 5 months ago

If you can't find your CIGA certificate or the current managing agents don't have a copy (which they should), call CIGA to get a duplicate. CIGA will ask for your full name and address and confirm the property is registered with them and send a copy out to you in the post. Their website is ciga.co.uk & Contact detail is 01525 853300 or email; info@ciga.co.uk.
If the firm that installed the Cavity Wall Insulation is no longer trading & it's proven the CWI is the cause of your problem, then responsibility falls on CIGA under its 25-year guarantee.

by George Harrison

9:05 AM, 7th January 2021, About 5 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Beaver at 07/01/2021 - 08:49
Write or ring CIGA, they will tell you who the insulation company was and instruct them to do a survey and yes you can get the insulation removed but it is a lot more expensive than putting it in

by George Harrison

9:07 AM, 7th January 2021, About 5 months ago

Reply to the comment left by George Harrison at 07/01/2021 - 09:05
Mind CIGA will use any excuse they can think of to get out of it

by Beaver

10:29 AM, 7th January 2021, About 5 months ago

Reply to the comment left by George Harrison at 07/01/2021 - 09:05
So how is the insulation removed and is it always possible? Doesn't it consolidate within the cavity?

by Rennie

10:40 AM, 7th January 2021, About 5 months ago

You don't seem to have covered the step of finding out whether the cavity wall insulation is the cause of the problem

by Steve Masters

10:48 AM, 7th January 2021, About 5 months ago

I would get the management company to instruct an appropriate professional(s) to survey and determine what the root cause of the problem is. If the damp proof course has failed then that might be the issue to rectify.

by Judith Wordsworth

10:48 AM, 7th January 2021, About 5 months ago

What mechanical ventilation do you have? Does condensation form on Windows?
Do you open windows daily to ventilate? Have passive air vents in the walls? Trickle vents in the double glazed windows? Adequate heating on?
Rising damp is different from condensation and usually only causes damp from ground level to 1 metre upwards.

Check your lease as this will give the responsibilities for the Freeholder, whether or not they self manage or use a management company. Your solicitor would have asked for a copy of the insulation certificate and you can check the guarantee period. See Laura Delow's advice above re CIGA. You also may be able to claim on the block buildings insurance policy. The managing agent should have sent you a copy, and an updated schedule each year.

by Mike

15:22 PM, 7th January 2021, About 5 months ago

As what Rennie said, it is very easy to be confused the cause of black mould growing on walls, internal condensation can cause it and make it appear like it is from the rising damp, and it gets confined behind beds placed next to walls, behind the head board, behind wardrobes, and on the ceiling as well, anywhere where there is high amount of humidity (Condensation) lack of heating and lack of air movement, and tackling it wrongly will cause it to appear every year around this time, the mould grows as a result of tiny pores, that settle on cold damp surfaces, and starts to grow, just painting over does not prevent it recurring, you have to kill pores with agents like bleach, then sealing it in with strong solvent based paints and then coat mat emulsions on top of it, vacuum thoroughly carpets and floors ans bedding and other linen and furniture, I even had to seal back of wardrobes with several coats of gloss, the mould had started to appear as a result of lack of ventilation as the tenant lost his rear sliding door key and that was the only window/door for that room, the mould had jumped from his walls to his douvet, pillows, it was a total nightmare, caused by his living standard, he only reported this when mould had jumped to his bed and developed a cough. After eradication, and new tenants, it has never reoccurred again. But be warned, it still can as it came int he first place for the first time, so air circulation and dehumidifying is essential to keep it at bay.

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