A structural waterproofing consultant is a specialist appointed to provide information and guidance relating to the design, installation and maintenance of a structure’s waterproofing.
When designing below-ground projects, BS 8102:2009 (Code of practice for protection of below ground structures against water from the ground) recommends that a specialist consultant is included in the design team from the outset. They are commonly appointed to consult on basement and swimming pool projects, where the risks of inadequate waterproofing are particularly high.
It has often been the case in the past that architects or structural engineers assumed responsibility for structural waterproofing design. However, this can lead to over-design of waterproofing and an over-reliance on manufacturer’s details. This can also be the case if a manufacturer is appointed as the specialist since they will inevitably specify their own products. Both of these scenarios can lead to the client receiving a less optimal solution than might be devised by a specialist. An insurance underwriter may insist on a waterproofing specialist being appointed.
The benefits of appointing a consultant are that they are specially qualified and experienced in creating solutions to prevent water ingress that can work within any constraints (e.g. budget, spatial) that the project faces.