Ar Apurva Bose Dutta, Bangalore
Increasing cost of construction coupled with rising costs of raw materials and labor have today led to the implementation of advanced waterproofing products and solutions for quality building practices. Though waterproofing as a solution dates back to centuries when habitats were prevented from water through thatch, reed, leaves and then through animal skins, natural stones, pitched roofs but with time and with advent of technology and materials, the options have increased manifold.
Concrete as a material has been used since time immemorial due to its cost effectiveness and versatility. V. Jayachandran Nair, Sales Manager of Bengaluru based Bostik India Private Limited, one of the largest adhesive and sealant companies in the world cites the reasons for leakage in concrete to use of excess water, inadequate compaction, long- term drying shrinkage, thermal shrinkage, crack in transition zone, structural stresses and lime leaching.
An effective and durable waterproofing system ensures increasing the shelf life of concrete, in turn providing longer durability of a structure and lowering the maintenance costs. Besides, one gets a sound foundation, the property value increases and the property remains aesthetically pleasing. Water damage can lead to metal corrosion, electric hazards, rotting of timber structures and finishes, swelling of plasterboards, growth of fungus leading to health hazards.
Typically, waterproofing should be applied over all below-grade concrete surfaces. These areas would include underground structures, elevated structural slabs over underground surfaces, foundations, terraces and plazas. Internal areas that are waterproofed include bathrooms, shower recesses, laundries, and toilets.