Structural walls and masonry façades rely on construction practices to help protect buildings from water leakage and infiltration. Most masonry materials absorb moisture, which can be managed by installing professional flashings, which help to divert the water back to the outside world. It’s important to remember that a typical structure presents numerous opportunities for moisture penetration, and proper steps throughout the construction process can help to deliver long-term protection for your customers.
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Today, we’ll discuss what flashing does in masonry applications, as well as the importance of relying on a trusted masonry supplier to get your projects done. Read more, and be sure to shop online when you’re ready to get started!
What Is Flashing?
When it comes to masonry services, contractors rely on flashing to deliver a level of protection and control over moisture as it enters a building’s interior. Flashing can consist of stainless steel, copper, peel-and-stick membranes, or other materials, providing years of service in diverting water back out away from the structure.
You flashing will work in conjunction with weep vents to allow moisture to exit the interior structure, creating a complete system that mitigates water troubles while also increasing air flow to improve drying times. End dams are also vital at the end points of your flashing, preventing water from flowing off of the side and instead diverting the water into weeps for proper diversion.
Flashing is an essential material for both structural masonry and cavity systems, delivering ideal water diversion in exterior openings.
- Lintels — The horizontal support beam across your door or window relies on flashing to ensure water does not infiltrate from one of many potential entry points.
- Wall bases — Base flashing is essential at the base of your walls and between each story. This product helps to protect the deck from water penetration.
- Beam pockets — These recessed areas allow beams to fit securely in both concrete and masonry walls. Flexible flashing is utilized to keep moisture away.
- Shelf angles — These relieving angles are utilized to carry the load of masonry veneer, relying on flashing around the toe of the angle for quality protection.
- Masonry copings — Any copings constructed of porous materials should not be considered watertight, making flashing an ideal solution for water movement.
Issues With Flashing
When it comes to deficiencies in workmanship and structural protection, the problem often sources from your flashing. If your completed project begins to suffer from issues associated with leaking, inspectors will likely begin with the flashing to look for signs of trouble. Why?
- Coverage laps and gaps — Throughout the process of installing flashing, you may encounter the common issue of gaps or tenting. Any gaps can provide a space for moisture to infiltrate, causing serious problems later on. Overlaps can also provide space for leakage. The best way to avoid this is to deploy quality training and inspection measures to focus on proper seals, minimizing long-term concerns.
- Clogged drainage systems — While drainage issues have been minimized over the years, certain projects may suffer from clogged cavities. It’s important to plan ahead and utilize as many vents at your flashing as possible to keep things clear.
- Corners and edges — Working your materials into tight spaces such as corners in close proximity to shelves can prove to be a challenge, especially when the entire wall system relies on cramped designs to achieve an ideal finish. Taking the time to do things right (and utilizing the right masonry supplies) can help to deliver a long-lasting result.
Precision and Craftsmanship Matter
No matter the quality of your building design, one deciding factor on the long-term effectiveness of your flashing will depend on the precision of your contractors. Workmanship matters at all stages of construction, and when it comes to applying your flashing, professionalism helps to smooth out any concerns. Mortar buildup can impact the flow of your weeps and flashing, resulting in damaging drainage issues. Minimizing mortar spills can help to ensure a clear result for your building.
Find the Masonry Supplies You Need
Masonry Direct is here to serve as your trusted masonry supplier in Denver, providing online services and direct deliveries to ensure you have everything you need to get the job done. Our professionals can help you source mortar mixes, plasters, hand tools, saws, and more to create an affordable and long-lasting result for your customers in coordination with your precision and professionalism.
Our masonry and construction supply company relies on our expansive inventory and 130+ years of service to ensure our customers receive the right products for their job. You can shop online now to find the supplies you need, or contact us online for complete assistance!