Waterproofing for Structural Longevity

May 31, 2010

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Facilities are constantly exposed to moisture in all its various forms. Here are two of the most common sources of moisture in buildings and facilities:

1. Climate-borne water such as those brought by rain or snow. After a heavy downfall, moisture can seep through weak or open areas in roofs, walls, or floors.

2. Air. Air-borne moisture comes from tiny and invisible water vapor. It is spread by diffusion into areas in the building.

3. Below grade groundwater. Through tiny cracks in the foundation, groundwater can enter the building.

Waterproofing contractors consider the above to be very important in designing effective waterproofing systems in facilities. Moisture must be managed properly to avoid water-borne damages to the building. Any amount of moisture that penetrates the building is in danger of staying there for long periods of time. Erosion is likely to take place, widening tiny cracks, weakening already weak spots in the building’s foundation, or destroying building materials as time goes by.

There are two main solutions to water infiltration:

1. Install an effective barrier system to keep moisture out.

2. Install an effective barrier system that allows the building to dry, when moisture does get in.

Waterproofing contractors must be able to setup a waterproofing system that bars air, moisture, and vapor from coming above or below ground. If water does come in, the system must be able to dry the area completely.

When this barrier system is in place, moisture will have lesser chance of bringing damage to the building’s structure, materials and components.

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