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Waterproofing maintenance cuts costs.

Waterproofing maintenance cuts costs

Most building accidents can be avoided if buildings, chimneys, and parapet walls are inspected periodically and remedial work is done during early indications of trouble. This would certainly save money, and more importantly, avoid the possibility of tragic accidents.

One such accident that comes to mind is a chimney which fell 165 feet. Fortunately, an iron staircase was over the roof level and broke the fall of the concrete. It severed four steps from the side channels. If the iron staircase had not been there, the concrete would have gone right through the roof and could have injured anyone who was nearby.

If periodic check-ups had been made it would have been obvious that the circuit cable and lightning points were broken and hanging. Lightning hit the chimney, spalled the small piece that did the damage and opened a large crack in the chimney. By the time we were called in, the project required extensive repair.

We put up steeplejack ladders and tied them to the down-lead of the lightning calbes. In doing this, we found that the downlead was loose and bolts were sheared off. Therefore, in order to get to the top of the chimney, we put in new anchors, and threw a cable around the chimney to secure the down-lead and ladders.

After we were able to take the loose portion down, we had to remove the complete 15 foot reinforced head of the chimney. The work was detailed and extensive and had to be done very carefully. If a periodic check-up had been requested prior to the accident, this chimney could have been repaired with a simpler and far less costly procedure.

Most reputable waterproofing firms offer a free survey of your property with no obligation. You should take advantage of this service now, during the summer, so that you can assign the work, if you like, before next winter's anticipated storms and frost.

As long as any amount of water can enter the wall, it will lodge behind the joints and move to other points. (Not just open joints, this can happen with porous sandy joints.) The water turns to ice in freezing weather, expands, cracks the joints, often pushing them out, and causes spalling brick (especially with commonbrick). The costs of repairing a weather-roughened wall is certainly more than the price for pointing open joints.

A very good visual check of your building means you should examine the exterior parapet walls, the roofside of parapet walls, coping stones, stairway and elevator bulkheads, incinerator and main chimneys, skylights, roof drains and gutters, and of course, the roof and flashing system.

Erik Kinney Vice President Ace-Jax Waterproofing Corporation
COPYRIGHT 1991 Hagedorn Publication
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1991, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Title Annotation:Renovation & Rehabilitation Supplement
Author:Kinney, Erik
Publication:Real Estate Weekly
Date:Jul 24, 1991
Previous Article:Heating upgrades may yield additional perks.
Next Article:Current market favors renovation vs. new.

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