Expansion Joint Systems

Torch-on waterproofing systems are commonly used to provide waterproofing and protection for various structural elements, including expansion joints. Expansion joints are critical components in buildings and infrastructure that allow for movement and flexibility while maintaining a watertight seal. Torch-on waterproofing for expansion joints involves the application of a specialized membrane to ensure these joints remain waterproof and durable. Here’s an overview of the process:

  1. Surface Preparation: Before applying the torch-on waterproofing system, the surface around the expansion joint must be properly prepared. This typically involves cleaning the surface to remove dirt, dust, and debris. It may also involve repairing any existing cracks or damage to ensure a smooth and even substrate.

  2. Primer Application: A primer is often applied to the prepared surface to enhance adhesion between the membrane and the substrate. The type of primer used will depend on the specific materials and conditions of the project.

  3. Membrane Installation: Torch-on waterproofing membranes are typically made of modified bitumen or asphalt. These membranes come in rolls and are installed by heating them with a torch and then pressing them onto the prepared surface. The heat activates the adhesive on the underside of the membrane, creating a strong bond with the substrate.

  4. Detailing: Special attention must be given to the expansion joint area. Depending on the design and requirements, additional layers of the torch-on membrane may be applied over the expansion joint to ensure a watertight seal. Proper detailing is crucial to prevent water infiltration.

  5. Sealing and Finish: After the membrane is installed, the seams and edges are sealed using a heat source to ensure a continuous and waterproof barrier. Some projects may require a protective topcoat or finish for added durability and UV resistance.

  6. Quality Control: It’s important to conduct quality control checks during and after the installation to ensure that the torch-on waterproofing system is properly applied and free of defects.

  7. Maintenance: Regular inspection and maintenance are essential to ensure the longevity of the waterproofing system. Any damage or wear should be promptly repaired to prevent water intrusion.

Torch-on waterproofing systems are known for their durability and longevity when properly installed. They are commonly used in various applications, including roofing, below-grade waterproofing, and waterproofing expansion joints in structures like bridges, parking garages, and commercial buildings.

It’s essential to follow industry best practices and manufacturer guidelines when installing torch-on waterproofing systems, especially in expansion joints, to ensure they remain effective at preventing water infiltration and protecting the structural integrity of the building or infrastructure. Additionally, consulting with a waterproofing professional or engineer with experience in expansion joint waterproofing can help ensure a successful installation.