7 best steps of terrace waterproofing for terrace garden
Terrace waterproofing is the most essential step when you start terrace gardening. The plants need water and water will bring moisture inside the walls and roofs of the building making them weak. To avoid this, the first step is to make your terrace waterproof.
There are various terrace waterproofing methods depending on the purpose for which you want to have it done. For tanks, roofs, swimming pools, or terrace gardens.
Who should waterproof the terrace
In some areas due to climate and geographical factors, its a need to waterproof houses, especially terrace whether or not you maintain a terrace garden.
People also use this technique for their water storage tanks or swimming pools.
For the gardening purpose, however, it is required to make sure that the safety and strength of the building remain intact. And this can be done by waterproofing the terrace. Here I am. going to provide terrace garden waterproofing details.
What to use for waterproofing
There are many waterproofing products available in the market. Depending on the need and budget, one can choose any of them. We are talking about a terrace garden so the best option is a liquid acrylic polymer coating. You can use Duraguard or Dr. Fixit or any brand you feel like.
This polymer is like paint and is mixed with cement and then applied on the surface of the terrace and also on the walls up to a few inches. I would advise using white cement with polymer because the usual grey one will form a black coating which will absorb more heat.
Waterproofing methods for Terrace gardening.
- Clean the surface thoroughly so no dust is there, you can even wash the surface if possible. Use a broom to clean the surface. Also, make sure to clean all the loose sand or gravel if anywhere. The surface has to be absolutely clean of any loose material like dust, debris or gravel.
- If there are any cracks or holes that must be repaired, make sure to repair them before waterproofing otherwise these are later going to damage the waterproofing layer. You can use the same waterproofing solution to prepare slurry to fill the cracks. Once everything is fixed you can start with waterproofing procedure.
- Prepare the waterproofing material by mixing 1 part of Dr Fixit acrylic polymer coating with 2 parts white cement.
- If you want to use it to fill the cracks then prepare a slurry. From waterproofing add more water so that the solution is of consistency of paint.
- Now cover the surface with a single layer of this polymer coating of thickness 2mm. Make sure no area is missed, just like paint, you need to cover the surface completely. Leave it for a day or two to dry. The first layer should be touch dry before applying the second one.
Use terrace garden waterproof sheet.
- If the terrace area is large I would advise you to use a terrace garden waterproof sheet which is known as fibre net or fibre mesh. This is just like a mosquito net and gives more strength to the waterproofing coating. After the first layer of the polymer coating is touch dry apply fibre net on that surface and then the second layer of polymer coating should be applied on it.
- The adjoining walls or skirting is also given the same treatment because the water would touch the walls too up to a few inches. Hence the walls should also be coated as well. You can cover the walls up to 6-8 inches with the same polymer coating in 2 layers just like the floor.
- If you are planning to use pots and planters only then this much is sufficient. So once these 3 layers – 2 layers polymer and 1 fibre mesh are complete and dry you can start with designing your garden. If you are planning to plant a few of your green friends directly on the surface you need additional layers of different materials.
- For direct planting, after the 2 polymer coating along with fibre net you need to apply a 2-inch layer of concrete mixed with an integral waterproofing compound. This compound helps in filling the natural pores in concrete giving it more strength and resistance to water. You can go for Dr Fixit or any brand you are convinced with.
Whether pots or direct surface planting, waterproofing is the most important step in terrace gardening. You can start the terrace garden without waterproofing also if you trust your roof garden drainage system but it is still best to have roof waterproofing done.
Having explained the terrace waterproofing methods, I would recommend you to take expert advice before starting it all on your own. Talk to someone who has good knowledge about building materials and how and where to use what. It is also very important to gauge the strength of your building before adding the weight of a terrace garden.