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The most ignored, yet most sensitive part!!

Waterproofing is the most sensitive aspect in building construction but ironically it is given the least importance!!! Today we are raising structures which are at par with international buildings but when it rains, we spot inconsistencies,the vicious cycle continues till the end of the monsoon season! No more tension till the next monsoon.

By the time the next monsoon sets in, the manufacturer might have terminated the existing applicator and the applicator might have joined hands with some other manufacturer.

So, what about the TEN YEAR warranty?

We need to understand the foolproof implementation of waterproofing.

Firstly, water proofing should always be considered as a means for secondary protection and the concrete itself should be sound enough to take care of the leakage issues. We should not dilute the quality of concrete on account of waterproofing. A sound surface is essential for successful waterproofing.Secondly, all waterproofing products are good. Selection of waterproofing product/system is what matters.

For example, a bituminous membrane may not be an apt choice for waterproofing the sunken portions or a crystallization coating may not be suggested over brick work/block work.

Last but not the least, is the selection of the waterproofing agency. There was this common joke shared between friends from the same industry on occasions of social gatherings that “every third man we meet on the streets now-a-days is a waterproofing applicator!!!”

The waterproofing agency should be selected on the basis of proper evaluation like customer feedback, site visits for buildings 3-5 years old and the technical expertise of the agency that comes with experience. The comparison of agencies should be on an apple-to-apple basis. Unfortunately, recognition of the waterproofing agency happens only when the structure leaks!!

On a lighter note, I have always wondered if the waterproofing system “brick-bat coba” was derived from the “ brick-bats” meted to the waterproofing contractors all around???

Remember!! Proper waterproofing not only ensures a water tight structure but also ensures protection to the structure from corrosion, contamination and chemical attacks etc., and thus ensuring long life to the structure.

M. S. Sudish

CMDPercept Engineers

Pvt Ltd

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