If you are going to build a new home you need to waterproof the foundation of it so you won’t have a wet basement in just a few years.
There are different waterproofing products and systems on the market so it really can be confusing. Hence what are your options?
Here is the short overview of the most common foundation waterproofing systems to help you to decide:
1. Liquid rubber foundation waterproofing membranes
Are elastomeric polymerized coatings made from liquid rubber – the same quality material your car tires are made from.
Advantages: They are easy to apply, quick to dry, cold applied. You can do it by yourself, by using sprayer, roller or trowel. The liquid cures into an elastic rubber coating, able to fill up current small holes and bridge possible future cracks in foundation wall as the building settles down. Rubber is flexible. They also usually come with a long warranty, and many are environmentally friendly with low solvent content, or solvent free. Very economical.
Disadvantages: Possibility of inconsistency in coverage, but the newest products will help you to determine the “right” thickness by the intensity of color, i.e. if you apply the product and you see any lighter patches, you just add more liquid. Additional surface preparation and curing may be required. If there are bigger cracks or holes in the structure you have to fill in with cement or other trowel-grade material before applying the overall coating. Also some of the liquid membranes require longer curing times for the concrete before they can be applied to insure proper bonding.
2. Hot applied Liquid Rubber Foundation waterproofing product:
It is a rubberized asphalt compound that forms a strong, flexible monolithic waterproofing membrane. Can be also applied on roofs.
Advantages: Adheres to virtually any structural surface. Ideal for rough uneven surfaces. Monolithic, free of seams, watertight, eliminates water migration and buildup of moisture. Offers strong protection because of the way it has to be applied.
Disadvantages: The surface has to be primed by primer first. The cost is higher because the product has to be applied in layers – basically you apply first coat of hot liquid rubber, then you have to quickly firmly press on the fabric reinforced sheet into that hot layer, then apply a second coat of hot liquid rubber waterproofing. Also, depending on the local building code you may have to apply 2 or 3 of these sheet layers. Because of this, the elasticity is low. And because it is Hot you have to be very careful – the best is to have it applied by a certified specialist.
3. Sheet membranes
The most common are self-adhering rubberized asphalt membranes composed of rubberized asphalt laminated to a waterproof polyethylene film.
Advantages: The biggest one is consistent thickness because they are “pre-made” to a required standard. Mechanically strong, resistant to hydrostatic pressure. Cover even the bigger holes or damaged areas.
They can be applied to concrete, metal, wood or masonry surfaces.
Disadvantages: Harder to … Read More
I met him conversing across front porches. He is part of a contracting crew performing a renovation on my neighbor’s home here in the east end of Toronto. He smiled and asked me how I was doing and soon we were chatting from porch to porch about the progress of the renovation he’s involved in. He saw me fiddling with my bicycle and talk turned to the bicycling club my wife and I are involved in. Eventually, we introduced ourselves. Meet Keegan.
Keegan is the kind of fellow you can’t help but like right from the get-go with is friendly smile and easy-going manner. I found out he has been working with the contractor for a few months and it has been working out well for him and they are pleased with his work. He likes the fact that no one is looking over his shoulder all the time and all he has to do is do his tasks well and in a timely manner. His work ranges from general cleanup to more interesting tasks such as drywall and other jobs which require more skill.
His father is a full-service contractor so you might say that working on houses is in his blood. I asked about his name and he said it’s Irish and that his mother is Irish. His father is from Barbados. It’s an interesting mix. He was born in London Ontario and spent several years in Hamilton before coming to Toronto 5 years ago. “So, you’re working your way east” I said. He laughed and said "It seems that way."
As we talked I discovered that home renovation is not what Keegan is all about. He’s a 25 year old graduate of a college film program and aspires to making his own films and eventually becoming a director. He’s currently just paying the bills (student debt, no doubt) but has bought a good movie camera and is starting to do some film projects on his own. His other interest in his spare time is snowboarding which he has done in Alberta (“Fantastic!”) and in the hillier areas north of Toronto.
Keegan was a natural to invite into my 100 Strangers project, given his friendliness and his interest in film. He didn’t know a lot about Flickr but was eager to learn more and was immediately interested in participating in my project. He assured me that taking a few minutes off the job wouldn’t pose a problem. I went inside to grab my camera and posed him between the two houses where there was favorable, gentle light. I think the photo above gives an accurate sense of Keegan’s easy-going, friendly manner.
In reflecting on life, Keegan said “Happiness should come before success as a goal.” He also told me his philosophy is to always strive to improve and that achievement frequently involves some sacrifices. Clearly, a thoughtful young man.
Thank you Keegan for participating in 100 Strangers. You are Stranger #597 in Round 6 of my project. I … Read More