Tuesday, August 3, 2021




Waterproofing is a hard industry that requires the mastering of technical skills and a strong work ethic.

The cyclical nature of waterproofing can contribute to some of the difficulties. Building booms, weather conditions, and competition all play a part in the development of waterproofing. The future of waterproofing will change with green building mandates, tighter building envelopes, and changing insulation requirements. Let's take a look at a few of these trends.


The next year is promising for waterproofers that focus on new construction. The U.S. single-family housing market continues to expand moderately. Building permits suggest that there will be even more growth in the months ahead. The increase is being driven by low interest rates, easy lending standards, and moderate economic growth.

Permits are outpacing start times, suggesting that builders and developers are finally looking ahead to more growth. This is great news for the economy and consumers.

Multifamily construction has slowed, but that's expected to be temporary, as rents across the nation are rising and vacant units are hard to come by.

Experts predict conditions will remain the same as in the past few years on the commercial market. 

The waterproofing industry is expected to outperform construction overall. Experts estimate a substantial backlog of waterproofing work has been delayed during the recession, with covid restrictions holding the business back. Because of this, there will be a large amount of work that needs to be done.

Some builders attempted to waterproof their homes themselves when the market crashed. In many cases, they were not trained in the work. Builders are trained to build homes and not waterproofing. Many homeowners did things cheaper during the recession to make ends meet. In many cases, this has come back to bite them, and we are seeing many seeking out professionals to fix the issues that have arisen from doing this type of work without the use of professionals. Now that the economy has improved and stabilized, homeowners are more willing to spend more money if the situation warrants it.

However, consumer budgets remain tight. Builders and owners who deliver the highest performance per dollar are most successful. The advantage is in products that provide state-of-the-art performance at a reasonable price. Finishing basements is a popular choice because it creates more living space.

Many clients realize that a low bid may not always be the best. Clients prefer quality and service over price. Even the government is moving to a progressive bidding system. They will often choose something else if the contractor can show why the more costly upfront method will be cheaper in the long-term span.


The future of residential waterproofing is changing with better products, better technology, and better craftsmanship. Carbon fiber, for example, is changing the way basement crack repair is done. Although the technology has been around for over a decade, it is now widely accepted and cost-competitive.

Successful waterproofing companies in the future will offer a broad range of basement repair services, which will help smooth out the bumps of cyclical waterproofing.

Conditioned basements and crawlspaces have become best practices, especially in humid climates, creating a major opportunity for waterproofing companies.

The old way to think about waterproofing contractors is that they have a great business when the rain comes down, but it doesn't dry up when it's dry.

A few years ago, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published a bulletin indicating that most indoor air was five times more polluted than outside air and that traditional crawlspaces--a vent on each end of the building and a loose vapor barrier spread over the ground--were one major reason.

Condiments crawlspaces have been a popular choice in humid climates for the last few years. For the same reason, enclosed basements are becoming more popular: they reduce radon, moisture, and unpleasant odors. This shift presents a huge opportunity for waterproofing businesses.

Mold, which was such a major focus ten years ago, is less of an issue since builders understand the importance of air quality and restricting airflow within the crawlspace.

Many waterproofing companies offer air purifiers and dehumidifiers as part of their move towards cleaner air. These products have "flooded the market" and are a good choice. Moisture, mold, and radon can be eliminated from the living area by enclosing the crawlspace. These technologies can solve what is known as "sick home syndrome."

Carbon fiber is changing the way basement crack repairs are done. This technology is widely accepted and cost-competitive.


Another huge market for waterproofers is egress windows. This is because code mandates are required for all basement remodels.

Similar changes are occurring in the sump pump industry. A growing number of municipalities insist that a licensed master plumber installs sump pumps. Often, waterproofers are more knowledgeable about sump pumps than plumbers. A master plumber license is not possible without years of training. Although they are trying to protect homeowners, this could prove to be detrimental to waterproofing companies.

In response, the BHA is developing a certified sump pump specialist designation and working with municipalities across the nation to accept this certificate as proof of competency.

The association already has a Certified Egress Specialist designation and a Basement Air Quality Specialist designation. 

Green Building

The only sector of construction that has seen almost uninterrupted growth in the last decade is green building. It is now mandatory to do what was once voluntary. Building codes now require both above and below-grade insulation. The International Building Code continues to be 30% better than the previous year's code; year after year, this continues to be true. This means that there is more rigid foam insulation above grade and below grade. Waterproofing systems need to adapt to be compatible.

Codes are also requiring more tightly designed buildings that have less natural airflow. Therefore, above-grade air barriers become more common. Now, house wraps must perform better, and detail is more important. Spray-on air and vapor barriers are making inroads in residential markets.

Air barriers are a common practice in commercial jobs. Rooftops are the most prominent green building trend in commercial markets. Cool roofs, reflective and green roofs are all in demand as green trends.

Across all segments of the waterproofing industry, green waterproofing products-- meaning those that are recyclable, low-VOC, or rubber/polymer-based instead of asphalt/solvent-based--are doing relatively better than those that aren't.

Many counties, municipalities, and townships cater to those who value green or sustainable construction. Manufacturers are seeking materials that are more sustainable, less toxic, and discourage mold growth. This is a popular trend for homeowners, but it's also of interest to commercial clients. It is a common question that many people ask, and they insist on it.

The growing emphasis on long-term, life-cycle costs is favorable to waterproofing contractors who focus on quality and craftsmanship. The green/sustainable building movement will give environmentally-friendly products an edge.

Roof coatings eliminate the need to tear off and replace aging roofs, extending their life by 10 or 15 years.


Construction costs continue to rise due to rising labor and raw material costs. Project developers and owners are choosing to use cutting-edge waterproofing solutions and products. One example is commercial roofing.

The same trend is true for all aspects of waterproofing. The popularity of acrylic polymer-based cementitious coats, crystalline admixtures, and polyurethane coatings is increasing. There is a shift from straw-and-gravel drainage to more modern materials like dimple drain sheets and perforated pipes.

Customers and contractors demand better sump pumps with wireless alarms and alerts, backup power, and the ability to autodial the owner's phone if they are disabled. In the future, backup sump pumps could be powered by small lithium batteries. This technology is similar to that used in smartphones.

Contractors need to be more educated and open to learning. Successful companies always look for new ideas and custom-designed solutions to meet customers' needs.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Facebook Follow