Water and moisture can ruin many types of materials, such as wood and wood-based building boards, metal, gypsum mixtures and gypsum plasterboard. Additionally, moisture creates a favourable breeding ground for mold and bacteria, and erodes the thermal insulation of the structure. Furthermore, under outdoor conditions, water and moisture penetrating the structure can also cause frost damage.
A wet room is, to put it simply, a room with a drain in the floor. In other words, a room that may, when used as intended, have water end up on the floor and walls. This type of room must have a floor that slopes in the direction of the drain, a sill in the doorway, and waterproofing that protects the entire floor and walls. In the event of a leak from a washing machine, for example, the water must flow into the drain and not into your or your neighbours’ home.
After using the shower or drying laundry, the bathroom has a much higher level of humidity than the surrounding environment, and water vapour begins to seep into the structures of the room. This effect is especially pronounced with outer walls. Due to the fact that warm air binds more moisture than cool air, the greater the temperature difference between the two sides of the wall, the greater the intensity at which water vapour from the bathroom presses into the wall structure. Water vapour then moves on from a poorly insulated bathroom, damaging the materials it finds on its way and causing bacterial growth and mold. The thermal conductivity of a damp wall deteriorates considerably, resulting in heat loss, condensation inside the wall, and frost damage during winter.
The situation is critical if the moisture that has moved into the wall is not able to dry out quickly enough. In our climate, this is a common problem. The resulting excess moisture in the wall enables the growth of mold. In addition to possibly damaging the structures and reducing their load-bearing capacity, it worsens the indoor climate of the building and causes various health problems. The higher the level of water vapour resistance of the waterproofing, the less water vapour can pass through it and the more efficient it is.
Four reasons why wet rooms require efficient waterproofing:
Preventing water and moisture damage, ensuring the longevity of the room.
Preventing the growth of mold and bacteria for better hygiene and health.
Minimising the damage to yourself and your neighbours in the event of a water-related accident.
Avoiding damp insulation and unnecessary heating costs.
In addition to impermeability, which is quite easy to achieve, the waterproofing must also provide protection against water vapour. Although the shower area is subjected to a water load for a relatively short period of time because the water runs off through the drain, the excess moisture or water vapour remains in the bathroom for a much longer period of time. Therefore, in addition to waterproofing, proper ventilation or fanning must always be ensured in wet rooms.
Waterproofing applied in liquid form can be divided into three types:
Polymer-modified cement-based mortars
Polymerous dispersion pastes
Waterproofing based on synthetic resin
In addition to those, there are waterproof building boards and different types of roll materials.
Polymer-reinforced cement-based waterproofing mortars are particularly suitable for protecting the building against rainwater, groundwater and moisture penetrating from the outside. They are suitable for use on surfaces both outside and inside the building. In addition, waterproofing mortars as well as resin-based coatings are used in areas subject to a heavy load, such as various industrial surfaces.
Polymerous dispersion pastes, which are traditionally applied to the surface in liquid form, are predominantly used as waterproofing in wet rooms. The mira 4400 multicoat waterproofing membrane is designed to protect wet rooms from water and moisture originating from inside the room, preventing them from penetrating the walls and the floor. Functional waterproofing is a complex system. In addition to the waterproofing, mira 4180 primer is used for priming the substrate; manchets, corner lints and pieces are used for reinforcing through hull fittings. If necessary, the adhesive sealant mira one seal is also used.
The waterproofing is rolled or brushed onto the substrate in at least two layers, with the different layers being applied crosswise. The material must be applied to the surface in sufficient quantity, in order to obtain the required layer thickness. Any connections, joints, through hull fittings, etc., involving different types of materials require special attention.
In addition to the waterproofing applied in liquid form in two layers, mira has introduced the innovative roll material mira 4500 vapourmat. The material is glued to the walls and floor of a wet room with mira 4650 aqua flex 2K two-component waterproofing mortar, and after drying, the surface is ready for installing seal manchets and then tiling.
The water vapour resistance of mira 4500 vapourmat roll material is more than ten times higher than that of a liquid waterproofing applied with a brush or roller. In addition to that, its layer thickness and water vapour resistance are always guaranteed. Furthermore, there is no need to wait for different layers to dry.
Traditional waterproofing applied in liquid form requires the corners etc to be sealed beforehand, and then two layers of waterproofing membrane to be applied to the surface afterwards. This means three stages of work with time for drying allowed in between each. The mira 4500 vapourmat, which is glued to the wall, is ready for the installation of seal manchets for pipes and corner pieces after 5 – 6 hours, and ready for tiling only a few hours after that. If necessary, individual tiles can be replaced on the 4500 vapourmat waterproofing roll without damaging the waterproofing.