Plaza deck’s present many obstacles to waterproofing correctly. Browse through our compiled articles and hopefully avoid these obstacles before faced with a problem.
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Peter D’Antonio has been with Sarnafil Roofing and Waterproofing Systems for more than 20 years in a variety of sales, marketing, and man agement positions. Mr. D’Antonio currently acts as the Waterproofing Manager and National Sales Manager of Educational Facilities at Sarnafil. An active RCI member since 1988, he has also served on the Board of Directors for the Sealant, Waterproofing, and Restoration Institute (SWRI), the Boston Chapter of CSI, and is currently on the Executive Committee of the US Department of Energy’s Rebuild America Program. Peter resides in New Hampshire. He can be reached at peter.d’ firstname.lastname@example.org .
systems and design. Many of these papers have focused on contrasting system types, material advantages, and recommended
standards. In most cases, these articles may be viewed as plaza deck waterproofing primers since they are based on both a generic material analysis and a general level of waterproofing experience. Despite advances in material technology and installation
experience, however, there unfortunately continues to be an increase in leaks, litigation, and premature replacement of plaza deck systems. Although it is easy for designers and manufacturers
to blame workmanship for most problems, certain safeguards
by all parties could be taken to forestall problems. This article is intended to review several important concepts that should be applicable to most deck waterproofing projects. The concepts are not original but are based on observations accumulated
from more than a thousand plaza deck applications, mostly rehab projects completed over the past 12 years.
Concept 1: One size does not fit all. The system from the last application may not be the best choice for the current project.
Los Angeles Chapter, May/June 2006.
issues change. In this article we will look at a plaza deck building system in order to understand
how it was originally constructed, expectations for its life expectancy, how to extend the life of
the system, and ultimately how and when to replace the waterproofing.
Many apartment complexes and associations are constructed with a structural concrete deck
above one or more levels of subterranean parking. Generally there are a number of separate
residential buildings built on top of the structural concrete deck. For the purpose of this article,
we are calling the area in between the buildings the plaza deck. This plaza deck is generally the
common area and is enriched with walkways, landscaping, planters, exterior lighting, and
sometimes amenities such as tennis courts, swimming pools or spas.
Plaza deck construction varies but generally the structural concrete portion of the assembly is
about 12” thick with two layers of steel reinforcement, one at the top and one at the bottom of the
pour. Rebar should have 2” concrete cover.
and Waterproofing Systems for five years. He currently serves
as the product manager for the U.S. waterproofing division
based in Sarnafil’s corporate office in Canton, MA. Prior to
this position, he was the national retail and strategic
accounts manager for the roofing division. Before joining
Sarnafil, Whittemore held various waterproofing sales and
product management positions during a 20-year career at W.
R. Grace & Co.
Creating a leak-free building is one of the greatest challenges
in our industry. Fixing leaks after the fact is even more challenging, especially on plaza decks. Plaza decks incorporate extensive overburden
systems, depending on their use. If there is a leak, the waterproofing membrane may be buried under tons of reinforced concrete,
heavy pavers or pavement, soil, and plantings. The removal and replacement of such overburdens represent a significant cost to the building owner.
Even the most successful waterproofing systems require maintenance or replacement
at some point during the life cycle of the building. A waterproofing system is made up of multiple components, and the failure of one component can lead to the failure
of the entire system. The fix is expensive
– many times more than the original cost. The situation is further compounded because the building is likely to be occupied and in use at the time of the repair.
READ GARY’S WHOLE ARTICLE BY CLICKING ON THE TITLE ABOVE.