When it comes to home exterior waterproofing, the pros usually throw around the term “hydrostatic pressure”. While you might have an idea of what it is, you must know why it matters, especially when mulling a foundation or basement repair project that can greatly affect your home’s value.
Waterproofing your home is extremely important. Waterproofing failure can result in water intrusion in critical areas, such as the basement and house foundations. Today, we discuss the common causes of waterproofing failure.
Waterproofing isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. With a standard waterproofing installation, a membrane is installed between the bare soil and the house foundations. A primer or adhesive is applied onto the membrane to make it adhere to the foundation slabs and walls. The wrong combination of primer and membrane can result in debonding, which, in turn, results in the membrane losing its adhesion and creating gaps in the seams that will ultimately allow moisture to penetrate the structure.
Using the right waterproofing membrane also matters in home exterior waterproofing. Inexperienced contractors substitute materials like ethylene propylene diene terpolymer (EPDM) or thermoplastic polyolefin (TPO) – both of which are commonly used for commercial roofing – as waterproofing membranes. While these materials are water-resistant, they are not suitable for use for below-grade waterproofing.
Proper preparation is important in waterproofing as there will be no chance for a do-over once the slabs are laid into the ground. To ensure proper waterproofing membrane adhesion, foundation slabs need to have even surfaces, without moisture or contaminating substances like oils and dirt. Improperly prepared slabs can result in poor adhesion, resulting in water infiltration. Incorrect installation methods, including improper overlaps, can likewise result in waterproofing failure.
A house may settle because of the ground shifting or because the composition of the soil has changed. The latter is usually due to improperly routing water from the gutters either due to overflow or leaks. As the soil absorbs the excess water, it becomes softer, resulting in parts of the house settling into the ground. If this happens, the waterproofing membrane would get torn apart, resulting in gaps where moisture can get in.
Ultimately, the solution to these problems is simple: work with an experienced exterior waterproofing contractor. Building-appropriate solutions like waterproofing coatings can be used when needed
Stonebridge Roofing, Waterproofing, and Exteriors is your leading provider of waterproofing and other home exterior renovation services. Give us a call at (904) 262-6636.