Waterproofing is fundamental in maintaining the integrity of both commercial and residential buildings over its service life. It minimises the post-completion problems mainly caused by water damages such as mould growth and rusting. Remedial waterproofing refers to any waterproofing works on an existing building that is suffering from damage caused by water penetration into areas such as concrete rooftops, basements and retaining walls. Faulty waterproofing can cause severe structural damage leading to safety hazards. Remedial waterproofing is about controlling and managing the water. Poor waterproofing can fail leading to cracks, mould issues, furniture and flooring damage and, structural defects like concrete cancer. Waterproofing might account for just 2-3% of a building’s total costs, but waterproofing defects can end up causing 80% of a building’s defects. Fortunately, if detected early, remediating waterproofing issues is significantly inexpensive compared to the potential damages it can cause.
The advancements in technology have led to the development of various waterproofing membrane systems such as, liquid, bitumen, and spray-applied membranes. The following are the most common remedial waterproofing methods:
Torch on membrane waterproofing
Torch on membrane waterproofing, also known as torch, applied membrane waterproofing, is one of the more common waterproofing techniques. This easy and effective waterproofing technique can be used on many different surfaces, including roofs, wet areas and even balconies, which can be quite difficult to waterproof. The technique works by having waterproof membranes bound to a substrate by using a torch, allowing for thorough bonding between the membranes and the substrate.
Torch on is a flexible waterproofing membrane consisting of a mixture of penetration bitumen, modified with Atactic Polypropylene (APP), and reinforced with a layer of non-woven polyester, The upper surface can be finished with a mixture of talcum and sand or mineral chip depending on the type of sheet used. The under finishing consists of a thin layer of Polyethylene foil. This membrane is flexible and resistant to tears as well as punctures. Bituminous coating and Bitumen sheet are applied using the torch on waterproofing system.
Bituminous Coating Waterproofing – Bituminous coating is a by-product of the petroleum industry. It softens on heating and hardens on cooling. It is the cheapest method of waterproofing. The bitumen is sprayed over the surface to provide a thin film that prevents the ingress of water.
Bitumen coating is not suitable for direct exposure to sunlight without modification with polymers. Hence, it is commonly used on foundations.
It is also a good option to be used below screed. Also, it is a very reliable method for basement waterproofing. However, this practice has been mostly discontinued.
Bitumen Sheet Waterproofing – Bitumen sheets are prepared with jute fabric or fiberglass mats with chemically modified bitumen. The bitumen sheets are laid on the roof over a bitumen primer. The two layers are joined together by a heating torch.
The bitumen sheet is not a suitable option for concrete roofs as they are airtight as well. Hence, the breathing property of concrete is obstructed causing blisters that affect the quality of concrete. However, they are a perfect solution for asbestos cement sheets and zinc sheets.
Some of the benefits of torch-on bitumen waterproofing include the following:
- It is suitable for full water immersion as well as sub-soil applications, making it an ideal application for sealing rooftops, decks, balconies, box gutters and planter boxes. It can protect buildings while retaining harmony with the building’s environmental surroundings thanks to a range of mineral finishes offered.
- Torch on used for green roofing solutions offers a simple way to seal your project and reduce carbon footprints; torch on membranes have an extremely long life span, with the majority of membranes offering global standards in quality. Fumes released during installation are not harmful to humans and there is low noise pollution during application.
- Torch on membrane system will protect insulation and have the potential to reflect harmful sun rays. Some products even contain photovoltaic cells that can produce solar energy. It is also non-water soluble, non-biodegradable, non-carcinogenic and non-toxic.
Liquid membrane waterproofing
If you’re looking for a waterproofing technique that is both effective and easy-to-apply, liquid membrane waterproofing may be the technique for you. Although this technique can be used similarly to other techniques, liquid membrane waterproofing is perfect if you need to waterproof areas that are either too small or too detailed for other waterproofing techniques, such as balconies and water features. Unlike some other waterproofing techniques, liquid membranes also have the ability to adapt with any changes that may occur to the building, such as the building expanding and contracting.
Epoxy coatings are a waterproofing resin that’s made to waterproof large surfaces, such as flooring and walkways. Unlike other waterproofing techniques, using epoxy coatings allows you the opportunity to customise your waterproofing, as epoxy coatings are available in a variety of colours and finishes. Some of these finishes include heavy-duty epoxy coatings, designed to sustain damage and non-slip epoxy coatings, which are perfect for plant rooms or other areas where the floors can become quite slippery.
These are just a few of the more common types of waterproofing methods used for remedial waterproofing. Whether you are waterproofing to prevent further damage or to repair existing damage, the Perfect Remediation experts can provide all the waterproofing solutions you need effectively and efficiently.
Why Choose Perfect Remediation?
The industry-leading remediation experts, Perfect Remediation and Refurbishment specialises in the repair, replacement and upgrade of key structural and non-structural elements required to improve, restore, and prevent buildings from future damage. Perfect services the residential, retail, commercial and industrial sectors in Greater Sydney and beyond. With a strong lineage in tier one construction, the company has flagship projects from the CBD out into the heartland of New South Wales. Our remediation team has extensive experience and knowledge in all sorts of remedial work, including waterproofing, required to maintain the structural integrity of your structure.
For more information on our services, take a look at our webpage or request a free quote.contact us today