Use of Water is mandatory for construction. It is mixed with cement to build a concrete structure, but too much exposure to water, carbonates, sulphate and chloride leads to deterioration of the building. If concrete has pores, then it causes seepage of water and this will eventually affect steel. Concrete waterproofing is basically a process in which an object or surface is made water-resistant so that it can remain unaffected by a heavy downpour of water.
As concrete is permeable to water so it is mandatory to stop deterioration by making it waterproof. You have to maintain that there should be adequate water passages and hydrostatic pressure also should be resisted to absorb water. It is suggested that in the exterior surface waterproofing should be done as internal waterproofing blocks the passage and make it a water barrier. Nowadays mostly crystalline admixtures technology is used by people.
Methods of waterproofing
Admixture: For the last several years this new type of waterproofing has become popular. Initially, the on-site or batching plant is mixed while making concrete surface and it gets soaked through it and produces a chemical reaction. In this type of concrete waterproofing barrier is created neither on the exterior side nor in the integral system rather it becomes a water barrier. In the time of hydration, densifier is mixed with calcium hydroxide and a by-product is created to slow down the water migration process.
Crystalline admixtures: Crystalline technology has the ability to enhance the durability of the concrete and can block the micro-cracks through a crystalline formation. This non-soluble formation can only happen in presence of moisture and crystalline products react with cement to produce a dense concrete. The materials are available in powdered form. This technology is applied to the areas like a terrace, retaining wall, basement raft etc. as these areas get damaged by harsh weather conditions or any other factors. The coating is applied with either spray or brush. For effective diffusion, the surface should be clean as it can reduce shrinkages and help to increase strength.
Sheet membrane system: Concrete waterproofing membrane system does not allow the water to pass through the surface. Sheet membrane is made of polymer bitumen and it gets mixed with asphalt and affixed to polythene sheet. Such sticky and temperature resistant sheets can actually remove harmful toxins and increase the strength and you will witness a smooth finish. This method still holds the market because of its durability and robustness. The tiniest gap can even be sealed but it is important the whole process should be done in a dust-free zone.
Liquid membrane system: Construction defects cause a leak in the terraces and roofs and affect the interiors of your house. Liquid concrete waterproofing is done by applying it like paint and has an excellent water-resistant capability. Polyurethane membranes are high resistance substances and are generally used for roofs. The protective layers prevent the surface from any environmental damage. As these are highly elastic in nature, so cracks can be covered up very easily. The effectiveness remains intact for various years.
Benefits of waterproofing
- Concrete waterproofing primarily increases the durability of the surface thus preventing water ingress inside it and it is paramount to save your concrete structure from any future damage.
- Waterproofing helps in stopping water infiltration and problems like roof leaks stay away.
- Waterproofing reflects the heat and keeps the chemicals of roof intact and chemicals and polymers don’t break down. Thus it increases the life-span of the roof.
You can choose different waterproofing techniques depending on site requirements and conditions. It is essential to select the right products with the help of constructors as they understand the exact need of the project.