Moisture testing specialists in Auckland
Is there really are difference between hiring your normal pre purchase house inspection service, and hiring a company who specialises in moisture testing plaster houses? Yes.
There are plenty of registered nz master builders and certified inspection services in Auckland who will practically hang up the phone on you once you tell them the house you intent buying is a monolithic or fibre cement sheet cladding, and the reason for this is because they don’t specialise in that area. Please note that moisture inspections are very specific and require different equipment and knowledge than a structural inspector.
Which types of homes are most vulnerable to moisture ingress?
All homes will get to a point where they leak, be it an older weatherboard home or new house. The point of difference where moisture is most destructive, is if there is a cavity system behind the wall.
In saying the above, some of the old school builders who built plenty of homes prior to 1990 will swear by the fact it’s ok not to have a cavity! Plenty of homes were built without insulation, and it worked… but now they are filling the cavities in between the studs and nogs with spray foam type products and retrofitting with new insulation. This now means any moisture that gets in behind the wall sits in the insulation and reduces the R value of the insulation… meaning the performance of the insulation could become less effective because cool/warm air will transfer through the damp insulation faster due to conduction.
The problem arises when the home is built with untreated timber. When you have no air circulation, and moisture getting into the walls, then that moisture builds up on the timber and saturates the insulation etc etc. The end result is mould and decay coupled with structural integrity issues before you know it!
Getting moisture testing in NZ is becoming a standard pre-purchase procedure these days, and everyone in the sales process of a house from the top down is recommending leak testing. Who and why?
Banks – They don’t want to risk lending on a house with leaking issues, unless a large deposit is paid from the buyer
Lawyers – What lawyer wants to risk their client buying a leaky building? They want the T’s crossed and I’s dotted.
Real Estate Agents – Again, they don’t really want to sell a leaky incase it comes back to them down the track
Friends & Family – They will all shoot you if you don’t get a moisture scan!
Buyer – Top of mind awareness due to large media coverage normally dictates a moisture test with plaster houses
As you can see from above, there a layers of people who will all recommend a company to get moisture testing on the house for ingress issues before signing a sale and purchase agreement. Make sure you get 7 – 10 days due diligence on the property if possible, because if a moisture issue has been detected in the initial test, then you may need to proceed to the next step of invasive testing.
Moisture Testing Summary
It’s not just about the type of cladding on a house, it’s got alot to do with the design and what the probabilities of it leaking really are. In so many cases it’s the homes that look impressive that leak more often (because they are architecturally designed which means more junctions, windows and corners = more leaks). The simple old rectangular shaped bungalows with eves rarely have moisture problems because of the simple, proven and long-lasting design.
Find a Leak is a specialist nz moisture testing company based in Auckland who have inspected homes nationwide for many years using specialised equipment including thermal imaging cameras.