While the rainy season in Africa is a blessing to many famers and water rationed city dwellers , it can be a source of a rude awaking to any building constructor if it happens that he did neglect to put in place, fail-safe mechanism to deal with unwanted water problems in his built environment .The very high humidity at this time of the year is most likely to unleash unforeseen moisture problems that will invite unwanted guests like moulds and fungi growths, busting paint blisters on the walls and suspended floors, unsightly stains on the roof ceiling, leaking taps within the walls, corrosion of steel reinforcements and condensation. In other words the interior finishes will be ruined , walls and the roof will be weakened ,the house will be exposed to the hazards of fire in the event of water shaking hands with live electrical wires and in the end, will compromise the long term high quality performance of the building .
What to do avoid this nightmare scenario? The best course of action, in the first place, is to invest in high quality buildings in which these moisture issues are neutralized early on in design and constructions stage. In other words the developers must ensure that the building substructure is water tight, by skillfully deployment of damp proof course in the foundation walls and damp proof membrane in the ground floor. This will deal effectively with either the problem of damp soils or rising damp.
Secondly, developers should ensure that the walls and roof are water proof. To minimize wall penetrating rain water, cladding can be used to render a finishing to the wall so that rain water can drain away immediately. For example wall cladding with granite, limestone or copper can offer sufficient waterproofing protection to external load-bearing walls of a building.
To avoid the problem of a leaking roof and stains on your ceiling ,spare no expense or pain in finding and hiring a qualified roofer who will ensure that overlapping roof cover is nailed properly .Also do not neglect to deploy rain water harvesting system on your roof. This will ensure all rain water is collected from all sections of the roof and drained away from the house to a storage tank and other designated outflow areas away from the house.
Third pay close attention to the floor workmanship. If the floor is not as flat as a flat screen TV, then you will have a moisture problem on your hands. A floor with contour encourages poor draining of unwanted water, which will cause ponding in various parts of the building . This problem will be more pronounced in high humidity area the bathroom and Jacuzzi where the water is likely to drain in the wrong directions. Ultimately this water will percolate into the floor and ruin the finish of lower rooms ceiling.
Fourth design your water installation with high water pressure rainy season in mind. Also because cheap is expensive in the long run, avoid substandard water installation supplies and unqualified water technicians.
Lastly, plan for the worst, by providing good drains to channel storm water away from your dwelling or building for that matter. This will bad-weather-proof your dwellings.
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