Our flat has some water damage due to a leak from the flat above us. I'm not sure what type of builder we should call. Is a plasterer the man to call or a general builder can do the job. I'd appreciate your thoughts!
I had this problem once in a flat I used to live in. A painter and decorartor smoothed out the damage to the plaster and repaired it, then painted over the whole ceiling. However beware, there is no point getting it done before the damaged area has totally dried out otherwise dampness will just come through the new plaster/paint again to some extent. This was what happened to me - it was a concrete ceiling and concrete takes about 6 months to dry out fully, in my experience.
We've had similar prob's. We've also had leaks from our flat into the flat below.
My tip would be to make double sure that the flat above have got the leak fixed. We were leaking into the flat below and we got some plumbers round to fix the leak. They were sure the leak had been fixed, but they were wrong. The work they did fixed MOST OF the leak, but not all of it, so the folks downstairs needed to wait until it was all fixed before getting their redecoration sorted.
We had a similar thing re leaks from the flat above into ours. What I think I learned was that in modern flats the floors are slabs of concrete and that a leak in one place in my ceiling probably doesn't come from directly above. It probably just means that the spot where we see the leak corresponds to a join in the slabs above us. The actual leak could be from elsewhere, but it will only leak down at a point where the slabs join.
It rather depends how bad the damage is and what sort of ceiling you have. If it's plasterboard it's probably got to be renewed. If it's plaster it will have to dry out and possibly skimmed before painting.
I have to admit that I do not know how the repair work is done in UK, as I am writing this message from Finland.
Anyway I think there should be found several companies in UK specialized to water damage removal, and especially for drying these wetted structures.
I do know that here in Finland the technical level is a bit more higher by different drying equipments than maybe in UK, as a lot of different device types are invented and produced here in Finland.
I also have to admit that I am writing this message because our company itself has been a pioneer on this field for several years, and we manufacture effective drying devices designed for drying wetted concrete and tile structures in floors, ceilings and walls. These devices can be plased directly on the wetted area, and this way all used energy is directed to the wetted area and the structure can be dried even in only few days or in few weeks at most. The method is completely safe.
I know that this does not help You directly, but I hope that You can find a suitable company doing the drying work, and You will get the repairs done much more quicklier and also there is danger that moisture is left inside the structure causing any mold damages later on.
Finnem Oy (company name)
I have had a similar leak from the flat upstairs , it damaged my walls and wooden floor. I called my insurance and they told me to find 2 companies to give me quotes to do the repair work. I managed to find a couple of companies in the London area, Thames Flood Restoration was the one that ended up doing the work for me, they did a fine job, first of all they dried out the property then did the renovation & decoration and now everything looks like it never happened.