Caulking and sealants help protect and waterproof a structure by ensuring water stays on the outside of the building.
BRIDGING THE GAPS
Often overlooked, joint sealants are critical in ensuring success of building envelope systems.
Window perimeters, building panels, and other joints are the primary areas that require special caulking in order to create a moisture barrier, while allowing for natural structural movement.
Every joint of a building needs to be sealed and made waterproof. A good caulking job combines meticulous preparation, the proper application of backing rods and sealant, and expert tooling to achieve an a seal that is both aesthetically pleasing and weatherproof.
Urban Waterproofing uses only top-quality silicone and urethane sealants by major name-brand manufacturers.
Urban Waterproofing is a Certified Applicator of General Electric, Dow Corning, Sika, Tremco, Pecora, and Sonneborn sealants.
Concave or a straight 45 degrees? It is important that the shape of the finished sealant bead is designed to shed water properly. Aside from making sealant joints look good, proper tooling also presses the sealant firmly against the joint substrate to ensure proper bond/adhesion.
The performance of the sealant is only as good as the substrate it is adhered to. Old, failed sealant must be removed, and the substrate cleaned of oils, residue, moisture, or other contaminants that could act as “bondbreakers”.
Closed cell and open cell backing rod both have their uses. While closed cell is commonly used, open cell is sometimes preferable, as it is highly vapor-permeable to allow proper sealant cure, and is easily compressible to accommodate joint width variation.
More sealant is not always better. The rule of thumb is that the thickness of the sealant should be one half the width – this ensures that the sealant has the ideal profile to perform as it is designed. Sealant that is too thick loses its elastic properties and can fail cohesively.
“Keeping buildings watertight is often an overlooked detail in construction. We appreciate Urban’s professionalism and detail attention to the issue. You guys understand what works and what are only quick fixes. It is a science that I wish more contractors are trained in and take pride in doing. Thanks for a job well done.”
Jay Ransi, UC Davis Medical Center
Projects where examples of this scope can be found…