Having a sound foundation is critical for any building or home. The foundation bears the entire load of the structure and transmits it safely to the soil. Any faults or weaknesses in the foundation can lead to serious structural issues.
So, does foundation waterproofing degrade over time? It can. Depending on the material used, quality of installation, site conditions, and maintenance, with higher-end systems lasting 30+ years, lower-grade coatings may need replacing in 10 years or less.
One key aspect of a robust foundation is proper waterproofing. Waterproofing prevents moisture from seeping into the foundation and causing damage. However, some homeowners wonder - Is waterproofing a permanent solution? Will it need to be reapplied or replaced at some point?
Before examining whether waterproofing degrades, it helps to understand what foundation waterproofing is and how it works.
There are two main approaches to waterproofing a foundation:
Both tanking and drainage systems create a protective layer that prevents moisture from passing through the foundation walls and reaching the interior. When installed correctly, waterproofing can keep a foundation bone dry.
There are several factors that influence how long foundation waterproofing will last before needing repair:
There are a few key signs that indicate foundation waterproofing is failing and needs replacement:
Any of these signs means the waterproofing requires replacement or extensive repairs.
How many years does waterproofing last? There is quite a broad range:
High-quality sheet systems and rubberized asphalt provide the greatest longevity. Lower-cost asphalt and acrylic coatings tend to have a shorter lifespan before requiring renewal.
Much depends on the specific product used, quality of installation, and how well the waterproofing is maintained. Well-installed sheet membranes or high-end rubberized asphalt systems can last 30-50 years or more. Lower-grade materials may only provide effective waterproofing for 8-10 years.
Here are some tips that can maximize the lifespan of your foundation waterproofing:
If your foundation waterproofing is showing multiple signs of failure, it's time to consider full replacement:
Complete replacement is called for if the waterproofing is compromised across large areas of the foundation. Localized repairs may temporarily fix issues, but correcting widespread deterioration requires the installation of an entirely new system.
If your waterproofing shows signs of aging, get an expert assessment before assuming total replacement is needed. An experienced foundation contractor can inspect the system and determine if selective repairs and maintenance will extend its usefulness. They may recommend applying a supplemental membrane over the old coating rather than a costlier full replacement.
Get a professional waterproofing inspection before problems intensify. A small investment in targeted renovations can add decades of life to an existing system.
Foundation waterproofing can last for many years, even several decades, with proper installation and maintenance. Higher-quality materials like thick membrane sheets, advanced rubberized asphalt coatings, and well-designed drainage systems provide the greatest durability. Lower-grade asphalt paints and coatings tend to have a shorter lifespan.
Notice signs like interior moisture, foul odors, and cracks or breaches, and repair promptly. Conducting annual inspections and fixing vulnerabilities early maximizes the lifespan of your waterproofing. With careful maintenance and attention, you can keep your foundation dry and protected.
About Lansing Foundation Repair Experts
Lansing Foundation Repair Experts is your trusted local contractor for all foundation problems. With over 20 years of experience, our expert team provides high-quality waterproofing, repair, and stabilization using advanced techniques. We offer free inspections and quotes. Call us today at (517) 296-6174!