How does DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER work?
DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER creates an impermeable physical barrier between the footing and the foundation wall. This barrier prevents moisture absorbed by the footing from continuing to move upwards (by “wicking” or “capillary movement”) into the foundation wall.
What is a capillary break?
A capillary break is any gap or physical barrier that interrupts the flow of liquid water through the microscopic fissures (or capillaries) of a material. DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER is a capillary break because it provides a physical barrier to the movement of water from the footings into the foundation walls.
Is DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER required by building codes?
DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER is not required currently by building codes in North America. However, the use of DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER does not violate building codes either. The use of DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER should not affect the approval of the foundation by local building inspectors.
How is DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER installed?
DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER may be installed as soon as the concrete for the footings is poured and leveled. Simply roll out the DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER fuzzy grey side down and blue side up. Line up the pre-printed centre key way line over top of the desired key way location. Gently press the DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER into the wet concrete with a standard trowel so that it is smooth and wrinkle-free. Because the DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER is placed directly into the fresh wet concrete, installation may begin as soon as each section is ready. It is not necessary to wait until the entire footing is poured before beginning. Start as soon as a section has been leveled. With the DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER in place, the key way may be formed in the usual manner.
How do you form the key way?
Once the DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER is in place, the key way may be formed in the conventional fashion using the preprinted centre key way line as the guide to locating it. Common ways of forming the key way include using a standard piece of 2” x 4” lumber or a specially-designed trowel.
Can DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER be installed on any footing forming system?
In general, yes, DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER can be installed on most any conventional footing forming system. However, forms using stakes, rather than cross-bracing, allow for a more continuous application of the membrane because fewer gaps are required. In a system using a lot of cross-bracing, the DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER must be stopped at one side of the cross-brace then restarted on the other. This creates gaps in the continuity of the membrane but will have a minimal effect on the overall performance. When cutting the membrane at the cross-braces, leave enough extra membrane so that the two ends may be butted up against one another to avoid large gaps. Even with gaps, most of the footing will be protected and DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER will provide much more moisture protection for the basement than if there were none at all.
How does DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER bond to the concrete?
DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER has a grey fuzzy back or underside that forms a strong mechanical bond when worked into the concrete with a trowel. This hydrophilic backing becomes saturated with the water in the freshly poured concrete and creates the bond as the concrete cures. No glues, primers, or mechanical fasteners are required.
Can I install DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER after the footings have hardened?
No. DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER must be installed immediately after the concrete for the footings has been poured and leveled while the concrete is still wet. If the concrete is allowed to harden first, there will be no way to bond the DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER to the concrete.
Can my house be retrofitted with DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER?
No. Once the concrete for the footings has cured, DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER may no longer be installed.
Will DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER come off when I put the drainage gravel in the foundation?
Provided a good bond between the DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER and the concrete is achieved, the concrete is allowed to cure prior to the placement of the gravel, and the gravel is not placed in such a way as to deliberately abrade the membrane, the DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER will not come off during the placement of the drainage gravel. Even with an excellent bond, caution should be exercised during the placement of the drainage gravel, especially when using a stone slinger-type placement method. The DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER should not come off during normal operation methods.
If the DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER is installed when the concrete is fresh, properly pressed in and smoothed with a trowel and the concrete of the footings has been allowed to cure properly, it does not debond from the footing during the placing of the drainage gravel.
Is there any special care to be taken when installing the foundation wall forms?
Foundation wall forms may be installed as usual. DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER is designed to withstand normal wear and tear due to form placement and for alignment chalk lines to remain visible. Forms are placed directly onto the DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER and walls may be poured normally.
Is DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER adversely affected by form release agents?
Small amounts of form release agents will not adversely affect the DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER or its overall performance. However, just as with a bare footing, saturation or pooling of any form release agent should be avoided.
Where does the moisture come from?
In most every jurisdiction in North America, building codes require that footings must be poured directly onto undisturbed soil. The soil on which the concrete sits is constantly damp. In addition, any foundation wall protection system, such as dimple board, is designed to direct water downwards to the footing. As a result, the footings of a house are constantly damp. If there is water in the foundation drainage system, then most certainly the footings are also sitting in water. As a result, the footings then may not just be damp, they may be entirely saturated.
What if it is a dry site?
While ground water table levels will vary from building site to building site, there is still no such thing as a dry site. Earth below grade is almost always near 100% humidity and is therefore a constant source of moisture. The absence of perceptible liquid water does not make a site dry.
How can I complete the moisture protection under the entire basement floor slab?
The DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER will create the capillary break between the footings and the foundation wall. While the gravel normally installed under a slab will act as a capillary break, it will not act as a barrier to vapor diffusion. To complete the capillary break and have a full vapor barrier under the entire concrete basement floor slab, install DELTA®-MS UNDERSLAB.
Why is DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER ideal for full-height insulated basements?
Before full-height insulated basements were commonplace or mandated by building codes, moisture that wicked up into foundation walls simply dried to the interior space. While this made the basement more damp and uncomfortable, it was relatively harmless because the moisture was not contained.
However, in a full-height insulated basement, both the insulation and the vapor barrier cover the foundation wall from top to bottom. This means that the moisture that used to dry harmlessly to the interior now encounters a vapor barrier that keeps it contained within the wall cavity where it is unable to escape. As moisture continues to flow into the wall cavity, it will wet the insulation, rendering it useless, and it will wet other sensitive structural materials like drywall and wood studs. Once wet, these materials can support mold growth and begin to decay and rot. The presence of the vapor barrier means that these materials will be unable to dry.
The best preventative measure is to prevent the continued passage of moisture into the wall cavity. DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER provides the physical barrier that will help prevent moisture from continually moving from the footings into the foundation wall and is therefore ideal in any basement where there is full-height insulation or where full-height insulation is planned.
How does DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER help prevent mold?
DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER helps prevent mold because it helps prevent moisture-sensitive materials in the finished basement walls from getting wet. Because mold will grow in wet areas on moisture sensitive materials, mold can be prevented by preventing wetness.
What if my basement is not going to be fully insulated?
Even if you are not planning to insulate your basement to its full height (assuming that it is not required by your local building code), DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER can help reduce the uncomfortable dampness that is common in basements. In addition, by installing DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER during construction, you will have the flexibility in the future to turn the basement into comfortable living space with the safety buffer provided by DELTA®-FOOTING BARRIER already in place.