Defects database

Defects database

Defects database pulls together existing isurv material into one searchable section forming an image bank for surveyors to refer to when examining defects. This resource is a handy tool for the experienced and novice practitioner alike.

The photographs in the database are all examples of actual defects encountered during routine inspections or investigations carried out by knowledgeable and often expert surveyors. The caption with each image provides helpful background, description or comment to enhance the learning point being illustrated.

Experienced practitioners understand that while the theory behind building defects may be well understood, the real-life situations that develop from them are often far from straightforward. Consequently, even the most capable surveyor will always welcome the opportunity to see new examples of building defects and the problems they cause.

Trainee surveyors and those with less experience will find within the database a wealth of information. There is little better preparation for understanding building defects, and the implications they have for building structures and for those who use or live in them, than to see real-life examples. The commentary not only supplements the images but often also acts as a pointer towards further research into the defect illustrated and the appropriate remedial work that may be required.

With circa 200 images, the database will be added to over the course of updates.

The technical editor for Defects database is Philip Santo of Philip Santo & Co.

The categories of defects covered at present are:

  • Chimneys
    • Lightning damage, Shared chimney stack, Ventilation
  • Conservatories
    • Rotted joinery, Building Regulations not met
  • Curtain walling
    • Roof light, Glazing, Cleaning
  • Damp
    • Condensation: mould, Condensation: windows, Penetrating dampness: staining, Penetrating dampness: mould, DPC, DPC tide mark, Damp penetration, Walls: rising damp, Floors: DPC, High ground level, Floors, Damp penetration: leaking overflow, Ceramic vents, Staining: chimney, Water table, Condensation: decorating and finishes, Damp penetration: leaking downpipe, Mould, Overflow pipe: long-term leakage, Staining: internal walls, Internal walls: mould, Penetrating dampness: basement, Water table: basement, Rain seepage
  • Drainage
    • Rising damp: drains, Blocked gulley
  • Electrical
    • Wiring, Old installation
  • Exterior finishes
    • Tesserae, Mineralite render
  • Flat roofing
    • Asphalt blisters, Asphalt cracking, Plant growth, Poor detailing, Poor quality repair, Chipboard deck failure, Incompatibility failure, Insufficient falls
  • Guttering
    • Finlock gutters, Poor detailing, Poor alignment, Lack of maintenance
  • Industrial buildings
    • Multi-storey car parks
  • Loft conversions
    • Conversion problems
  • Materials
    • Asbestos, Calcium silicate, Cement fibre: roofing, Concrete
  • Movement
    • Porch brickwork, Leaning retaining wall, Internal, Cracking, Expansion, Concrete frame
  • Pitched roofs
    • Lack of restraint, Defective slates, Winter risks, Valley defect, Poor condition
  • Plumbing
    • Poor detailing, Underground pipework, Leakage
  • Rot and infestation
    • Common furniture beetle, Woodworm, Dry rot, Wet rot
  • Sloping ground
    • Drainage problems
  • Ventilation
    • Condensation, Carbon monoxide
  • Walls
    • Brick slips, Brickwork, Cavity tray, Flashing, Sulphate attack, Efflorescence, Over-zealous cleaning, Timber frame
  • Windows
    • Condensation, Sash windows