Information for Property Managers
Moisture Probes don’t damage the cladding and can be monitored as repairs are done and as the building ages
Buildings that will benefit from Detection often have the following attributes
|Untreated framing being UTKD, low Boron H1 and insecticides||This framing was used mainly between 1988 and 2005. Wet poorly treated framing can decay causing total loss of strength. Once decay has become advanced it will likely rot out fully as it dries after repairs – ie any leak can be terminal to a wall.|
|Treated framing being low decay Hazard or H3||Boron treatment in wood restricts germination and slows down decay advancement but is not a decay exclusion principle. Walls still need checking to ensure they don’t have defects and that repairs are successful.|
|High complexity roofs especially flat roofs without eaves – and decks||Water gets in at joints in complex detailing around rain heads, parapet caps, flat roof laps, internal gutters, over flows, joints to claddings, at deck junctions and through membranes.|
|Complex windows||Windows don’t often get flashed adequately allowing water in especially in windy situations around complex windows like facetted, stepped, arched, round types and large ones with flex.|
|No control joints in multi storey walls||Causes excessive cracking and leakage points in the cladding. Often control joints have been concealed with mouldings which aren’t weatherproof and hide the entry points.|
|Cracks and stains in the paintwork||Water enters cracks. Moulds growing on damp surfaces are a tell tale sign.|
|Cladding embedded into ground lines||Ground and surface moisture wicks up porous claddings – sometimes a meter high wetting framing and preventing drying.|
|Penetrations especially sign boards, wooden beams and pipes||Direct water entry at failed junctions and wicking through wooden beams keeps framing wet.|
|Poorly performing sealants||Water entry points.|
|Buildings that haven’t recently been tested||Damage accelerates once it starts. The longer between tests the worse the likely condition of the framing.|
What do I need to implement?
- Install Detection equipment to test the effectiveness of your maintenance plan
- Update your maintenance plan to incorporate Detection
- Create a maintenance plan utilizing Detection
Start by undertaking a visual assessment to consider your buildings risk – All buildings exhibit some form of weathertightness risk – risk can never be totally eliminated – it needs managing. Define what risks your property portfolio will accept and what it doesn’t? It is not wise to deny risk exists – it is more appropriate to understand risk and take steps to reduce the cost consequences by implementing Detection so if things go wrong they are caught early.
Call us NOW to discuss your property risk and how Detection can add value by reducing long term costs and consequences.
What we offer?
- Visual on site risk assessment. One of our experienced weathertightness personnel will visit your properties and meet with you to discuss how you want to manage the risks identified.
- Moisture Detection system – permanent Mdu moisture probes. When we install probes we test moisture, treatment and framing condition in the most likely areas of risk around the whole building or area being assessed – see www.mduprobe.com
- Simple maintenance plans or modify your existing one to reflect findings. Where issues are found extra maintenance work may be required to stop leaks. We have policy statements to manage moisture and decay. Not all decay must be removed.
- Auditing work and monitoring – ongoing test of performance. As building work is completed we monitor the probes which show how well the plan is working. Maybe more work is required, maybe not.
The installation of the moisture probes involves collecting timber samples for testing. These are the basic tests:
- Moisture Content – ONGOING
- To probe that leaks are not present now or in the future, wetting the timber and allowing rot to develop.
- Timber Condition and Strength
- To probe that past or current leaks have not allowed rot to cause damage in the structure.
- Treatment Test
- To probe that timber is protected from future leaks.
This information is required to understand how well the building has performed to date and how likely it will in the future. If not how bad? Does it need a rebuild or something less? The benefit of undertaking dozens of tests around a building is this pinpoints where actions are needed and where things can be left. It’s not about ripping the whole building apart because of one or two bad results. The more extensive the diagnostics the more fine tuned the response.
The Mdu Probe investigation system
We use the Mdu Probe system as it’s the most reliable non-destructive and permanent investigation and Detection system available. With regular ongoing monitoring performance is no longer guesswork.
See www.Mduprobe.com for information on Mdu Probes.
Reports are included: Results are presented online plotted onto plans, elevations and 3D viewer. A colour graphic representation allows easy understanding of results. Pinpoints where decisions are required to rectify leaks and make repairs.
Building Surveyor said reclad – but that was an extreme reaction. A retirement home administration, recreation and nursing station building was assessed by a building surveyor and the results were bad – so bad – reclad. Instead the property manager sought a second opinion using the Mdu Moisture Probes. Installing 150 Mdu Probes showed only 5 areas needed fixing. What was helpful was the probes also showed previous repairs had been successful so the property manager was equipped to continue doing what they started – they just needed to know where else repairs were needed – the problems were detected so they could get on with it. Nobody had to move out, no plastic covers, no loss of income. This demonstrates efficient management of buildings.
How bad is it asked a property manager of a shopping mall. His underlying concern was he has been watching other shopping malls spring up plastic covers and being reclad. This building had the same cladding system so he feared the worst. What should be budgeted to reclad and why didn’t his maintenance plan find this in time? It was welcome news when our investigations found many walls had no damage at all. Now he can concentrate on just the few areas of walls with damage. The test results pinpointed where the damage was and the extent of it so the repairs can be prioritized over the next few years income – meaning shareholders won’t get deprived of dividends.
Body Corp. Committee confused and sought facts they could rely on. When we were approached the committee had already tendered and received a maintenance plan as required under the new BC rules. Trouble was the building surveyor said reclad first. This was unwanted news especially after they had just repaired the decks and roofs. The committee discovered one of the owners had installed probes and was in the process of fixing her unit with maintenance. This program has now been extended to all the units. The plan is affordable so thankfully every owner is on board allowing the plan to proceed. Interestingly only a few walls need timber replacement which is to be staged over the next 5 years at owners’ choice. The driving force was the owners could not see value in the reclad.