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Commercial Building: How to Manage Common Waterproofing Problems

Proper waterproofing is essential for vulnerable structures and spaces in your commercial building, including podium decks, flat roofs, basements, ponds, cellars and balconies. If these elements are not waterproofed, your building will degrade due to water damage. In simple terms, concrete structures will become cracked, steel elements will rust, and timber features will rot. Unfortunately, waterproofing can fail if the protective membranes are installed correctly or poor materials are used for the process. Therefore, it is important to inspect your waterproofed spaces and resolve related issues. Here are some of the common problems that you should check on during the inspections.

Membrane Blistering

If air bubbles are trapped beneath the waterproofing membrane or between the felt plies covering the membrane, some surface blisters might form on your building structure. The bubbles might not be prominent at the beginning. However, if the trapped air is warmed, it will expand and cause the blisters. With time, these blisters will break and the waterproofing will be compromised. If you notice this problem in your home, you will need to plan for immediate restoration of the waterproofing to prevent water damage. Under ideal circumstances, you should look for a waterproofing solution which can be applied over the existing membrane. This method will eliminate the inconvenience of removing and reinstalling a new membrane.

Structural Leaking

If your waterproofing membrane is faulty or has become degraded over time, your flooring, balcony or roofing might start leaking. The flow of water can be highly damaging for the building. In simple terms, if the water penetrates your building structure, the construction materials will begin cracking, rotting and corroding. Also, you might notice mould and mildew growth in your spaces. If the problem is in its early stages and extensive structural damage has not yet occurred, it might be possible to resolve the problem by installing fresh waterproofing. However, if the damage is extensive, you might need to repair the water damaged structure before proceeding with waterproofing.

Rainwater Pooling

You should prevent the pooling of water on waterproofed horizontal surfaces in your commercial building. In general, if your membrane or waterproofing coatings are in prolonged contact with water, they will degrade faster, increasing the risk of water infiltration. You should be particularly keen on water ponding on your flat roof when it rains. This is a common problem because flat roofs have a very gentle slope. If you notice the accumulation of rainwater, you should plan for the modification of your roofing for fast and efficient drainage.

About Me

Having building work carried out on the building you use to run a business can be very stressful. However, it doesn't need to be this way. By working closely with the contractors, you can ensure that they follow the designs and plans and that they only use the highest quality materials. When I had to call in a team of contractors to work on my office block, I was super worried. However, the team of construction guys were really great and they actually took the time to explain exactly what they were doing and why. I hope this blog is helpful.

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