Posts Tagged ‘Blog’

Design meeting at MacLennan headquarters

Waterproofing, Better by Design.

ian scroggins

Ian Scoggins CSSW

I have worked in the construction industry for 28 years and have been specialist waterproofing surveyor for 12 years, my time as a waterproofing specialist has given me a rounded experience of the industry.

During that time in the industry, I have seen projects that have gone very well and some not so great.

Based on my personal experiences, I have come to realise that its early engagement and collaboration with the overall design team that delivers the best results. By everyone investing time in early engagement, I find that designs can often be simplified as sitting around a table and everyone giving their input can often take out expensive complexity and give a much better overall solution, that ultimately benefits the end client.

This only works when the correct sub-contractors are engaged on project early, so they are associated with the project from day one, one thing that sets us apart from manufacturers offering technical support is that we are involved in projects on-site every day and know the practical solutions to problems that aren’t always evident when looking at a drawing.

When it comes to high-risk elements like the basements and waterproofing, going out for multiple tenders and the lowest bidder often leaves you with skills and scope gaps as there is a clear lack of ownership. It can then become about delivering a solution to a budget, rather than a simple but effective solution that works with all the other key partners on the project in mind that’s actually deliverable on-site.

This doesn’t mean the client shouldn’t benchmark the competition and capabilities, as I live in the real world and want to offer real value for money to my clients but I want to do this without them un-intentionally building in unnecessary risk by accident by being insightful and helpful early on. It’s what falls between the cracks where the real risks sit (no pun intended) that really sets out your specialist subcontractor as part of a collaborative team that makes all the difference.

"My role is as much about sleeping well at night, as it is about waterproofing."

As myself, my MD, our insurance company, the main contractor and my end client all want to never ever worry about what the waterproofing is doing as it’s a hidden system in their beautiful property that just does what its supposed to. Its why our company takes full design and solution responsibility and hold genuine guarantees as we offer our clients leak free basements from a waterproofing perspective rather than material warranties.

If you found this blog helpful or would like to hear more technical advice, try booking a CPD with MacLennan! We offer free, lunch provided 1 hour CPD's at your premise.


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Deck hunting season is open!

The MacLennan staff are starting to emerge from the basements, blinking in the sunlight and preparing to work on decks. Winter work on basement decks is at best difficult and at worst, carried out incorrectly in poor conditions.

Sprayed and hand applied liquid Waterproof systems should never be applied on damp decks. They should never be applied when the ambient temperature is not at least 3 degrees above the dew point, even if the sun is out. We rely on bond to resist outgassing.

This applies to most forms of waterproofing on decks and around basements. Even the sheet membranes normally have a primer which relies on the dry warm conditions for installation.

Planning a basement.

If you are planning a basement you should be sequencing the work so as the critical deck and external waterproofing is carried out in the spring, summer and early Autumn.

If the work has to be carried out in the winter then you have to cost in Winter primers, tenting, frost blankets, installing and removing covers, drying of surfaces and downtime when work just cannot happen unless fully tented and heated.

All of this preparation is very rarely considered even when set out in supporting information and data sheets supplied by contractors and manufacturers.

This is all critical.

If you allow or worse force the work to happen in inappropriate weather and environmental conditions you will have failures.You cannot apply waterproofing the day after rain, you need at least a good days drying after the water has been cleared off of the deck.

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