Archive for December, 2010

The Last Staw!

Tuesday, December 14th, 2010

There was a first for me last week in more years than I care to admit to as a surveyor.

The call came from a client in North Derbyshire with a modern house on a large estate.  Tiles were falling off his bathroom wall and the room was full of flies.  His wife and daughter were giving him grief because they couldn’t use the shower.

It was clear that water from the shower had got through the seal around the bath edge and soaked into the wall.  The paper face on the board beneath (plasterboard I first thought) had disintegrated and turned into a black ‘mush’  leaving the tiling with nothing to stick to.

But what about all the flies?  Dozens of very tiny midges.  Where were they coming from?

Removing the bath panel the floor looked more like a hen house; straw everywhere.  It wasn’t plasterboard at all, it was a straw-board partition!  Clearly, the moisture had caused the straw to decompose; it was like having a compost heap for a wall, hence the infestation of flies, breeding in the ‘compost’.

There was no option but to tear the wall down and rebuild it in moisture resistant board.

The wall was rebuilt, retiled and redecorated in a fortnight with smiles all round.