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Rain water is expected to penetrate through joints in building facades. Consequently, a secondary line of defense is recommended in facades that contain frequent joints to collect, divert, and drain the water to the exterior. Concrete facades have historically been designed without this secondary line of defense because concrete walls have very few joints and it was believed that water would not penetrate concrete. However, due to shrinkage cracks in concrete, improper design, sealant joint failure, wall profile, and condensation water leakage has occurred through concrete facades. This water leakage may be controlled and be prevented from leaking into the interior of the building by a secondary line of defense. Details of a secondary line of defense against water leakage in concrete facades are presented in this paper.
Condensation, flashing, sealant failure, shrinkage cracks, water leakage, weepholes
Vice President, Principal, and Chicago Unit Manager, Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc., Chicago, IL
Senior Architect/Engineer, Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc. (WJE), Chicago, IL