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Waterproofing Errors

It all very well to spend time in the waterproofing industry learning how to install one system over and over, but to become a successful waterproofer you have to be sure you have completed research within the trade. For instance, have they thought about issues that may arise in the future which could cause the system to fail or create different problems.

So you may think “A waterproofer just comes in and waterproofs the area then leaves” some inexperienced waterproofers will think like this, correct (believe me I have witnessed this over the years). Rather than just being a robot and installing the same system, using the same products and then leaving a licenced waterproofer will inspect the structure upon attendance to ensure issues will not arise in the future.

Take balconies for example. Have you ever experienced/noticed that ugly salty stain running down the face of balconies? You may have even noticed this on top of the floor tiles of a balcony (or shower area for that matter) this ugly stain is called “Efflorescence”. The main cause of efflorescence on balconies is through the evaporation of lime and salts from a tilers screed. This occurs due to the fact that when a balcony is constructed the substrate should be build with fall towards the drainage points, however this is not the easiest thing for a chippy to do and to be honest I would predict that at least 70% of the time the fall will not be adequate. So once the substrate has been waterproofed, tiler has screeded the area then tiled within approximately a years time you will start to notice salts on top of your balcony floor tiles between the grout lines.

What happens is when it rains the water absorbs into the screed (as grout is porous) and when the water rest on the floor it can not escape to the drain due to lack of fall, the water is then trapped within the screed and can only escape through evaporation (or down the front edge, if the angle around the balcony edge has not been installed correctly)

To avoid this issue I can install a system which includes a secondary layer so that you will never set eyes on this ugly staining. This is just one example of a structural issue that may result in a future problem if the waterproofer does not have enough knowledge within this area. I have come across many different structural issues during my time as a waterproofer, for the company I last worked for within my role I was required to identify structural issues which will cause future issues, complete a detailed “Construction Issues Report” then send through to the building supervisors.