17 January 2022 - 16:08,
by Le Fong
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Most Singapore home owners experience wall seepage as a structural issue. It is almost impossible to repair water damage caused by seepage and must be repainted every season. All of these problems can be avoided, however, if proper precautions are taken during the construction. You will not only save a lot of money but also maintain the structural strength of the construction. Here is everything you need to know about wall seepage and how to prevent it.
What causes wall seepage?
Due to the external walls of concrete structures being exposed to the elements, prolonged contact with rainwater can cause cracks in the outer covering, allowing water and moisture to seep in. This makes the walls damp. In the absence of treatment, this dampness seeps into interiors and ruins the paint on the walls.
Housing.com News got in touch with Aarav Master, a Jaipur-based structural engineer, to understand how wall seepages could be avoided and treated.
How to detect water seepage at home
- On the interior walls of the home, look for water spots.
- Water seepage can be traced to its source. It could be caused by leaking water tanks, broken pipelines or old plumbing.
- Ask your structural engineer if there is a gap between the walls of your home and the next home, since water can also seep through this gap.
- Plastering the exteriors with poor quality materials is another cause for water seepage. To learn more about this aspect and the quality of your house, consult your contractor or your builder.
How to treat water seepage
Here are tips from Master, to solve the issue of water seepage:
- The use of low-quality paint on the walls is one of the main reasons for water seeping through to the interior of your home. The paint allows moisture to seep through the concrete and damage the walls. In the present day, there are many high-quality paints that are waterproof and contain elements, such as silicon, which provide extra strength to areas that are most prone to seepage. Opt for better quality paints after researching and consulting with your structural engineer, to avoid a lifelong hassle of seasonal renovation.
- If the construction is already done and there are cracks on the walls, you can use mortar to seal these cracks. It is a dense material which is also waterproof. For damaged roof or wall tiles, white cement is the best possible option, as it can prevent chipping of paint in a humid climate.
- During construction, always opt for sturdy water pipes and ensure that the joints are well-sealed. Check for leakages in the water tanks and plumbing every six months and conduct an inspection of the drainage system. You can also hire professionals, who can use proper tools to identify and recommend customised solutions.
Tips for avoiding wall seepage
- Use exhaust fans in the kitchen and bathroom to ensure proper ventilation. This is to expel the moisture from the interiors.
- Avoid drying laundry indoors, as it creates a lot of moisture within the home. You can also use dehumidifiers, to remove the moisture from the air.
- Avoid painting the wall during winters, as this can create a lot of dampness inside the walls. Always opt for painting tasks when you can keep the doors and windows open.
- Always make sure that the steam created inside the kitchen is expelled in the shortest possible time, to avoid dampness on the walls.