Answered: 13 questions you could have about your walls

Answered: 13 questions you could have about your walls

Posted 5th March by Peter Byrne

For many homeowners, home maintenance can be a minefield

After all, we're not born knowing everything, and seeing an issue occur will often lead to a number of concerns. However, that's where this clever guide from Aspect comes in. It answers the common questions you could have about your walls…

1. Why are my walls wet?

If condensation starts to build up, it will be a sure sign that there's moisture in the air.

2. Why are my walls damp?

Dampness on the walls means the structure or foundations of the house are starting to feel sorry for themselves.

3. Why are my walls black?

Black stains mean black mould, as it's caused by damp. This could be dangerous if it is left untreated, so it's important to get a professional in to check the stains. 

4. Why are my walls cold?

Having a cold wall simply means your house isn't well insulated. 

5. Why are my walls turning yellow?

A lightly coloured alkyd paint can discolour if it doesn't get the required light. However, if it's exposed to ammonia, cigarette smoke or excess cooking oil, it can begin to turn light coloured walls yellow.

6. Why are my walls sweating?

What looks like 'sweat' is likely condensation, which builds up on walls due to moisture in the air, along with poor ventilation.

7. Why are my walls mouldy?

Mould is caused by dampness in the brickwork or the very structure of the house. It can become dangerous it it's left untreated, so it is important to make sure you get a professional to check any stains.

8. Why are my walls sticky?

Having cigarette smoke can mean there's a build up on the walls which can leave a sticky residue. Unusually, leftover paste can sometimes reactivate, and subsequently feel sticky when touched.

9. Are my walls insulated?

This is quite easy to tell - you can find out based on how warm your house feels. If you spend significant amounts on heating but don't feel the benefit, it could be because insulation is the issue. Get a qualified professional in to carry out thorough tests.

10. Are my walls plaster?

Turn off the power at the mains and carefully unscrew a plug socket from the wall, so you can see what your walls are lined with. It is really important to make sure the electricity has been switched off before you attempt this.

11. Are my walls cavity or solid?

If your home was built after the 1920s, it will usually have cavity walls. It will be possible to tell from the pattern of the brickwork outside - a solid brick wall will have a pattern that alternates between both the long and short sides of the brick.

12. Are my walls asbestos?

If your home happened to be built before 1980, it could mean there's asbestos in the walls. Before you start redecorating or renovating, you should ask a professional to check for signs of it.

13. Are my walls load-bearing?

Load-bearing walls are able to carry the structure of the house from the roof to the foundations. This includes the exterior walls and those that are at right angles to the floor joists. If you're not sure, simply ask an expert to check it.

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