Waterproofing Your Metal Building: A Complete Guide

A metal building is an ideal solution to many industrial, commercial, and personal needs. Whether you intend to use your metal building as a home, storage space, production line, or more, it is important to customize it to meet your needs.

Waterproofing is an essential consideration for any metal building. Taking steps to keep water out can extend the life of your structure and keep it functioning in any weather conditions.

This guide will detail how to waterproof a metal structure. You will learn the benefits of waterproofing and how to do it.

Reach out to the experts at Titan Steel Structures with questions about waterproofing or to explore our line of prefabricated steel buildings. You may also get a customized quote for your project.

A Guide to Waterproofing a Metal Building

When you invest in a metal building, you want to do everything you can to protect it. Water damage is one of the most common and preventable sources of trouble for a metal structure.

Water can corrode metal, cause swelling, and erode the foundation. It can leave a mess of mold that devalues the building and jeopardizes your health.

Rain, snowmelt, and pooling water can seep into the interior space of your building. It can drip down walls, cause condensation, and leak into hidden spaces. Keeping water outside is critical.

Here are steps you must take to waterproof your metal building.

Seal interior walls

Rain and snowmelt can seep, drip, or flow through cracks or air leaks in the exterior walls. Moisture can also infiltrate your structure through the joints where the walls meet the concrete slab. Windows, vents, roof and floor transitions, and doors are also vulnerable to water leakage.

It’s crucial to protect the exterior walls against water infiltration. This requires:

Caulking around joints, roof, and glazings
Installing vapor barriers
Using gutters, overhangs, and downspouts to divert water away from the foundation and walls of your building

Taking these steps can help you prevent water damage in and under your structure.

Seal the roof

Temperature changes can cause metal roof sheeting to expand and contract. This can create leaks that lead to corrosion, seam damage, and rusty fasteners.

You can prevent metal roof leaks with several steps, including:

Caulking seams and fasteners
Applying seam tape
Installing a waterproofing membrane

It’s important to use a sealant with high elasticity so that it can expand and contract along with the roof.

Fix foundation problems

In addition to water entering the metal structure from above, water can seep up from the floor or enter at the base. To prevent this, you must consider various ways water can enter through the foundation and take steps to stop it. This may include:

Removing plants or other landscaping that allows water to pool
Install insulation around pipes near the foundation to prevent water infiltration
Check that all drainage lines extend away from the foundation to avoid an increase in hydrostatic pressure
Install waterproofing membranes around below-grade walls

Identifying and correcting foundation issues can help you prevent costly water damage that threatens your building’s structural integrity.

How to Prevent Condensation in a Metal Building

Condensation can occur when moisture in the air gathers on a surface with a temperature at or below the dew point. You may notice condensation on pipes, windows, and other surfaces. It may appear as water droplets, ice, or frost.

Condensation can also cause noticeable damage inside your structure. You may see:

Damp insulation
Peeling paint
Damp spots
Mold on interior walls
Rusted fasteners
Sagging insulation between purlins

You must take steps to prevent condensation in your metal building. Many standard waterproofing techniques can limit the risk of condensation. However, it is important to take extra steps to avoid condensation.

Here is an overview of how to reduce condensation in a metal building.

Install proper insulation

Continuous insulation (CI) is best at reducing condensation in metal buildings. Continuous insulation prevents differences in inside and outside temperatures that can lead to insulation.

Install vapor barriers

A vapor barrier seals the building to prevent exterior air and water from reaching the inside. Choosing a vapor barrier that prevents the accumulation of moisture inside the structure is crucial.

Ventilate the building

Without proper ventilation, air and moisture can become trapped inside the building. Ventilation is important in a metal building. There are several ways to ventilate a building, including:

Ridge vents
Exhaust fans

Proper ventilation and HVAC systems can keep condensation at bay.

Watch for signs of condensation and other water damage. Addressing these issues quickly can help you avoid larger problems and more expensive repairs down the road.

Get a Customized Quote Now

Contact the steel building experts at Titan Steel Structures for help with any metal building project. Explore our range of prefabricated metal building kits or design a structure from the ground up. Contact us to get a customized quote for your project.

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