Bentonite waterproofing and its advantages
Since ancient times people have widely used bentonite clay for waterproofing their houses. It was usually applied to the foundations of castles, fortresses, palaces and other ancient buildings. Over time researches and development of bentonite clays have put them to the highest level. Nowadays bentonite waterproofing is a guarantee of functional durability of your house. Moreover, bentonite waterproofing is the real economy – not only of your labor, but also your time and your money. It is easy to install and very effective. The process does not require any additional skills, so you can easily perform it with your own hands.
What is bentonite waterproofing?
Bentonite pellets are at the core of this insulating material. It is natural material which is capable of polymerization. Sodium bentonite, with its special structural features, has a tendency to swell increasing in volume 14-16 times. Bentonite turns into gel-like substance that fills the cracks and pores of the material of construction. After it gets a solid plastic material forms, the water resistant insulation layer appears.
Types of bentonite waterproofing
To perform bentonite waterproofing in modern construction process a number of species of waterproof materials is usually used. They are divided into 4 main categories according to the method of performing:
- surface waterproofing which is made usually made of asphalt and cement-based materials;
- bentonite waterproofing membrane materials which are presented by roll-type materials;
- polymeric membrane materials which are roll-mounted,
- bentonite mats(or panels).
The main advantages of bentonite waterproofing:
- its high impervious properties;
- the possibility to use these materials in challenging conditions of waterproofing (they are able to withstand hydrostatic pressure up to seven levels of atm);
- because of its significant increase during hydration in a confined space it has the so-called “self-healing” quality;
- the durability of waterproofing materials which is due to its constant properties over the time;
- it is very easy to perform without requiring any additional skills (compared with traditional technology the effort in this case is only 20%).
It is necessary to reiterate that the use of bentonite waterproofing fills even the pores, cracks and voids that are invisible to your eye, achieving an absolute indicator of water resistance – it indeed can give your house something that is very close to the term “eternal life”
Nowadays among the most advanced modern materials are bentonite mats. Today they are often used in the construction to perform the vertical and horizontal waterproofing of foundations of buildings. Moreover, they are used in the construction of hydraulic structures and underground buildings of various types and purposes. Bentonite mats are a web-looking material which consists of 2 layers of both non-woven and woven geotextile fabric connected in a needle-punched manner. Between them there is the most important component of the waterproofing which is called the natural sodium bentonite (the injection way). It is layered as a number of rather thin sheets.
When using bentonite mats experts identify the following benefits:
- the waterproofing work can be performed during any season of the year;
- simplicity of the device;
- during the work it can repair itself eliminating minor mechanical damage arising during installation and backfilling of the pit, as well as a variety of cracks in the structure to be isolated;
- ability to withstand the unlimited number of freeze/thaw cycles and dehydration/hydration cycles;
- effort saving;
- time saving;
- low water permeability;
- almost 100% ecological purity;
- durability and permanence of properties over the time;
- the ability of “self-healing”;
- resistance to various chemical contaminants;
- it can be used in complex hydrogeological conditions;
- it can withstand hydrostatic pressure of up to seven levels of atm;
- resistance to aggressive environments;
- it has a high adaptability, ease of installation in all weather conditions.
We should also notice that bentonite mats are more reliable than other methods of screening. On the market of today bentonite mats are one of the most effective and reliable materials for waterproofing. Using bentonite waterproofing you get a reliable “self-healing” waterproofing system for many, many decades, but its price is comparable to the costs of lubricative mastic or roll waterproofing materials. At the same time the reliability of such mats is several times higher than one of traditional materials for waterproofing.
Among the leading manufacturers of bentonite waterproofing materials are Voltex, Volclay, NaBento.
We hope that this article has a full answer to the question “what is bentonite waterproofing?” and that it was useful for you.