A building’s waterproofing system of commercial caulking and coatings is the first line of defense against water penetrating the façade. Failed caulking has been shown to be the most common cause of water intrusion issues in all types of buildings. Routine inspections of your building’s waterproofing systems, especially the caulking or sealants, is the easiest way to detect and prevent water intrusion issues. The easiest way to inspect your building’s caulking is to simply go outside and check for signs of deterioration. It’s important to inspect multiple areas since the numerous areas and components in a building’s façade are exposed to varying conditions such as temperature, sun exposure, wind and rain. Utilizing a knowledgeable waterproofing contractor, such as Presto Restoration, is especially important when inspecting your building for any waterproofing caulking and coating failures.
Types of Commercial Waterproofing Applications
There are several components involved in caulking and coatings, so let’s discuss the most common terms we refer to during a waterproofing project.
A caulked joint is the area between two building components where caulk is applied to seal the joint and prevent the intrusion of elements such as water, air, dust, dirt particles and insects. Over time, these sealants in the joints deteriorate and need to be removed and replaced to ensure a secure and waterproof seal. There are many different types of caulk available on the market, each of them with varying purposes that cater to specific materials or problems. Using the wrong kind of caulk could result in leaks and expensive damages to your building. Joints such as control joints and expansion joints are just two examples of caulked joints that should be regularly inspected.
Silicone caulking is a very common and popular sealant. It’s flexible, clear and resistant to water and mold, making it the perfect sealant to use on surfaces such as glass, metal and concrete. Silicone caulking installations last three times as long as urethane and only costs 30% more. Silicone cannot be used on any wood or masonry. And because of its composition, it cannot be painted over.
Urethane caulking is typically used in areas that will be painted or covered with an elastomeric coating, such as concrete panels, horizontal joints, flashing, expansion and control joints and more. It’s important to choose a knowledgeable urethane caulking contractor because if urethane caulking isn’t properly installed and coated over, it deteriorates quickly because of its intolerance to sun exposure.
Elastomeric coatings are basically a liquid rubber coating that was initially formulated to protect stucco but is now widely used on various other surfaces such as poured concrete, masonry, stucco, floors, roofs, brick, metal and even wood in some cases. Elastomeric coatings are nearly 10 times thicker than paint and, when applied properly, protect surfaces from water intrusion and other external elements for over 10 years. Since the elastomeric is flexible and stretchy even when it’s dry, it moves and shifts with the expansion and contraction of the materials it coats, instead of cracking like dry paint would.
Wet glazing, also referred to as wet sealing, is used to seal a window system, connecting the glass window to the surrounding frame. Wet sealing is an excellent replacement for dry seals, such as rubber gaskets, that deteriorate over time and allow moisture inside. Since, as the name implies, wet glazing is applied wet, the installer must be trained with the proper tools and application techniques in order to create a clean, uniform appearance from both inside and outside the glass window.
Deteriorated sealants around window perimeters are a common cause for water penetration. Building window perimeters should be routinely inspected to prevent this intrusion, which can cause damage to the exterior and interior of a structure.
Presto Restoration Waterproofing Services & Products
By properly maintaining your building’s caulking and coatings with a trusted and knowledgeable waterproofing contractor such as Presto Restoration, you’ll guarantee to extend the life of your building and save yourself from expensive repairs associated with water intrusion. Through decades of experience as an exterior waterproofing company, the Presto Restoration team has developed a keen understanding of, not only the highest performing, but the most efficient and cost-effective waterproofing methods and products. Our team uses a long-lasting inorganic silicone sealer on precast instead of the less-durable sealer, Silane, that other contractors tend to use. Our sealant of choice lasts 2-3 times longer for glass and metal surfaces and prevents staining for decades. Presto Restoration also recommends Dow Corning 756 SMS caulking, which is designed to reduce the rundown of stains and can last up to 20 years. Not only have we mastered the art of waterproofing, but we have also developed our own line of commercial waterproofing and protection products. We stand behind the Presto Restoration name and guarantee the best results from our services and products.