What is Waterproofing in Australia? Why use a waterproof membrane?
When constructing areas like bathrooms, laundries, or balconies, waterproofing is typically the first step taken to prevent moisture from penetrating the structure of the home. This involves the installation of waterproofing barriers on walls and floors to ensure they are fully compliant with waterproofing requirements. The process of waterproofing can be accomplished in three straightforward steps.
- The first step involves applying primer to the walls and floors while ensuring that there are no significant gaps.
- Next, a bond breaker made of rubber or fabric is used to seal gaps in critical areas such as corners, drains, or round drain fittings.
- Finally, two coats of the membrane are applied horizontally and vertically to lock the membrane layers in place.
What is a waterproofing membrane? What about its design and installation?
A waterproofing membrane is a layer of installed material around the structural foundation to fight off the water. Basically, there are 2 types of membranes –
For example, a Polyurethane liquid membrane is the best for exposed areas. In the case of a basement sheet systems are the best.
Types of membranes for waterproofing bathroom, shower base, and other renovate parts
Water-based epoxy and resin system- Fibreglass is used as a removable tub. Moreover, it is root-resistant. It is best for any masonry or concrete and saves the property from moisture. It must be installed according to your need. Whether for a full renovation, temporary fix, or external waterproofing.
Flexible Systems- Acrylic liquid systems like water-based membranes are low in toxicity and are UV stable. Also, they are not root resistant. It is best for small roof areas, ridge caps, flashings, parapets, and around skylights.
Flexible Sheet- Torch-on modified bitumen is UV stable with high durability. It is root resistant. It is best for sealing rooftops, box gutters, decks, and planter boxes.
Elastomeric Systems- Solvent-based polyurethane is very flexible and not suitable for a damp substrate. It is not UV-stable or root resistant. It is best for bathrooms, kitchens, etc. If an Elastomeric system in the bathroom is installed, your shower would need not to worry as it assure the waterproofing that meet the Australian standards.
Elastomeric Sheet- This includes TPO, rubber, Butynol, and PVC. These are root-resistant, durable, flexible, and UV-stable. These are best for tunnel, foundation, and roof waterproofing systems
Why can’t I do the waterproofing installation myself?
Generally, it is advisable to hire a professional to conduct waterproofing since it is often more convenient and cost-effective in the long run. This is because there are specific standards that must be adhered to, and in some states, only licensed professionals are allowed to perform the work, as they are certified and well-equipped to handle the task. Additionally, in other states, the work must be certified to confirm that it meets the Standards.
The reason for this is that incorrect application of waterproofing can lead to significant damage to your home, which can be both expensive and time-consuming to fix. Water damage can weaken the structure of your home and create mold issues that are challenging to resolve. However, if you hire a professional to wet seal your bathroom, they will provide a guarantee for their workmanship for an extended period. This means that if anything goes wrong, you will be covered, giving you peace of mind.
Who is qualified to do waterproofing in Australia?
Only trained professionals who have Australian waterproofing licenses are qualified to do this job. These professionals must issue a compliance statement once their job is done.
Only trained professionals who currently carry an Australian waterproofing license, especially in NSW and QLD are qualified. Said professionals must provide a statement of compliance once the job is done. This indicates that the work performed by them is in accordance with the standards, which specifies the requirements for waterproofing of domestic areas. Moreover, in most instances, a licensed holder or a qualified person would have obtained an approved III-level course certification in waterproofing.