Waterstop has a singular purpose: To prevent the passage of fluids across and along concrete joints. Waterstop does all of its work at the joint. Because concrete joints are frequently open and subject to hydrostatic loads, waterstop has the most critical role in fluid-proofing a concrete structure. A pinhole or imperfection in a vapor barrier will have little to no noticeable effect. Still, even the slightest defect in the waterstop product or its installation can be truly catastrophic to the fluid-tight integrity of the building envelope. For this reason, a great deal of care must go into what I call the MSI Process: Manufacturing, Selection, and Installation.
Waterstop MSI Process
- Waterstop MANUFACTURING, history, and types of products commercially available. The manufactured waterstop must be of the highest quality from a manufacturer offering specification, detailing, and installation assistance.
- Waterstop product SELECTION is the second most important consideration. Profiles are available for myriad applications and conditions. The designer must choose correctly, preferably with manufacturer consultation.
- Waterstop INSTALLATION. Most waterstop failures occur because the material incorrectly installed.