Benefits of Torch-On Waterproofing

Torch On Waterproofing 1What exactly is torch-on waterproofing, and how can it help your roof stay protected against water and damp?

This innovation offers an alternative to asphalt roofing. Typically used on flat roofs, waterproofing membrane systems are made of sticky, viscous organic liquids. Bitumen, a hydrocarbon made from crude oil, is one of the key components of this material. Non-harmful to the environment, highly effective against water and boasting a number of unique qualities, bituminous torch-on is widely considered to be one of the most reliable tools for waterproofing contractors.

What is Torch-On Waterproofing?

Before we go into some of the benefit offered by this technology, let’s take a quick look at what torch-on water proofing is all about.

Simply put, bitumen torch-on is a specialised solution that works particularly well on flat concrete roofs. It also works well on foundation and retaining walls, flashings, parapet walls, expansion joints, corrugated and IBR roof laps and roofing screws, as well as gutters, flower boxes and water retaining structures. As a damp proofing measure, it helps to prevent the risk of water logging with the help of its water resistant surface.

Made from a mixture of bitumen and polymers, which are applied to a polyester or fibre-glass reinforcement membrane, a stronger, sturdier membrane is created to protect surfaces against damp and water. This membrane is powerful; resistant to tears as well as punctures. The final result is bitumen torch-on sheeting, which can be applied onto flat roof surfaces and then measured for an exact fit.

Torch-On Waterproofing Advantages

Some of the benefits offered by torch-on bitumen waterproofing include the following:

  • Suitable for full water immersion as well as sub-soil applications, it an ideal application for sealing box gutters and flower boxes.
  • Able to protect buildings while retaining harmony with the building’s environmental surroundings thanks to a range of mineral finishes offered.
  • Green roofing solution that offers a simple way to reduce carbon footprints.
  • Extremely long life span, with the majority of membranes offering global standards in quality.
  • Fumes released during installation are not harmful to humans and there is low noise pollution during application either.
  • Protect insulation and have the potential to reflect harmful sun rays (some products even contain photovoltaic cells that can produce solar energy).
  • Non-water soluble, non-biodegradable, non-carcinogenic and non-toxic.

Torch On Waterproofing

As a waterproofing contractor who always strives to offer customers the latest in technology, Wilcote is excited to offer torch-on waterproofing to our customers who want to take advantage of this eco-friendly, highly effective solution.

Roof Repairs in Cape Town – Preparing for the Stormy Season

Winter is just around the corner, and for many homeowners in the Western Cape, that means investing in Cape Town roof repairs. This year, instead of waiting to see whether any damp or water damage occurs, get proactive with a simple yet effective three step check that will go a long way in preventing little problems from becoming big, expensive problems.

It is no secret that winters in this part of South Africa bring their share of wind, rain, hail and other harsh conditions. The city did not get its nickname ‘The Cape of Storms’ for nothing, after all. Whether you live on the coast or further inland, preparing for the wet weather will go a long way in preventing drips, leaks, flooding, damp and other related issues.

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Roof Repair Checklist to Prepare for Winter

Don’t wait until you urgently need emergency roof repair. Some of the most important things to check include the following:

  • Gutters

Servest Box Gutter Repairs 1From late autumn all the way to late spring, Cape Town receives a high percentage of rain. One of the biggest causes of damp is blocked gutters that cause water to pool on the roof. Gutters and downpipes that are filled with leaves, branches and other debris are unable to channel water properly. As such, these fittings should be thoroughly checked and cleaned before each season to ensure that they are free of debris. It is best to leave this to the experts, who have the necessary equipment and skill to do a proper inspection and clean. If repairs are needed, they will be able to assist with these, too. They will also check that gutters are secured to the roof, and free of rust and damage.

  • Roof Tiles

roof tilesWhether you have an older home with a shingle roof, or a newer home with a modern flat roof, damaged, missing or shifted roof tiles are the quickest way to allow water to sneak inside your house. You may be able to see signs of damage from the ground, but unless you have experience in roof related repairs, it is best to leave more extensive checks to the professionals. They will be able to safely get onto the roof, know where to step (and where not to step!), what to look for and what to do when any problems are noted.

  • Flashing

Asbestos Slate Roof Repairs

Flashing that is rusted, worn, cracked, warped or otherwise damaged can also greatly affect the overall longevity of your roof. This is one of the biggest causes of water leaks in roofs – hail, strong rain, wind and heat can all affect flashing over time. After a long, dry, hot summer, it is a good idea to check that all flashing is in good shape and able to withstand the storms to come. If any signs of damage or wear are found, it is essential to replace flashing quickly.

In need of quality roof repairs in Cape Town from a contractor that has ample experience? Contact Wilcote today to request a quote!

5 Questions to Ask Your Painting Contractor

If you have been hunting high and low for a reliable, efficient painting contractor in Cape Town or any other part of the country, you may think that finding one in your price range is the toughest part. Actually, while cost is important, there are a number of factors that can greatly affect the overall success of the painting job.

To help make the process a bit easier all round, we have put together a list of questions to ask prospective painters… before signing on any dotted lines.

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Hunting for a Painting Contractor in Cape Town? Here’s What Questions You Should be Asking.

Some of the questions that you should ask your Cape Town painting contractor include the following:

  1. Are any references from previous customers available?

A good contractor will be more than happy to provide references, testimonials or ‘before and after’ photos that showcase their work on previous projects. If none are available, it could be a red flag that past projects have not been done to the level of quality advertised. It could also be a simple case of customer feedback not being requested by the contractor, but even a small business should at least have some reports from customers. If you cannot find any feedback like this, you could also try doing an online search to see if there are any reviews to be found on social media or consumer service websites. Whether those reviews are good or bad, you will want to know upfront, before you take on the potential contractor.

  1. Is the company (and its workers) covered by insurance?

It’s horrible to think about anyone getting injured while on the job, but this is a harsh reality that should be considered well in advance. If a painter is hurt on your property, you could be held responsible if the contractor is not insured. All workers should be insured, and the company itself should also be covered for general liability, workman’s compensation, injury and any other unforeseen disaster. As uncomfortable as this question might seem, it will be a lot more uncomfortable if you don’t check to see whether the potential contractor is fully covered.

  1. How will the property be prepared for painting?

The actual painting stage is one of a few that occurs during the job. Before painting begins, walls need to be prepared. If there are any holes, cracks or other issues, these will need to be fixed before paint is added. Surfaces need to be properly scraped and sanded. Ideally, to ensure that preparation will be done properly, it is best to get a breakdown of what will be done to prepare your property for painting. Get it in in writing if you can. Find out what you can expect and how long the preparation will take.

  1. What grade of paint will be used?

 You may be tempted to cut costs by using a cheaper, lower grade of paint. In the long run, this could end up costing you far more, however. Cheaper paints result in bleed-through in a shorter length of time and do not fare as well as premium paints when it comes to wear and tear. Make sure that you know what quality of paint and materials will be used, so that the contractor can work this into their overall cost estimate. On a related note, is also a good idea to get in writing ahead of time how many coats of paint will be applied. Make sure all these details are listed in the Quotation.

  1. What is the clean-up process after work is finished?

This question is often overlooked, because homeowners assume that the contractor is responsible for removing any debris collected over the course of the job. Unless this is put forth in writing however, you may end up with old paint tins, dirty rags, bits of wood, plaster and other mess that you have to clean up yourself. Good contractors will consider these post-project details, but typically, it is the homeowners responsibility to get it all in writing and make a plan.

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Now that you have a better idea of what to ask future painting contractors in Cape Town, you should be one step closer to finding the ideal person for the job at hand! And remember, for contractors that you can always trust, Wilcote offers efficient, affordable Guaranteed Solutions across South Africa.

3 Things to Remember When Sourcing Roof Repairs in the Cape Winelands

With winter in full swing throughout much of South Africa, roof repairs in the Cape Winelands are certainly something to consider. Strong rains, wind, hail and storms can wreak a fair amount of havoc on your roof – especially in older homes. Horror stories about roofs being blown away at night aside, there are a few things that can go wrong when it comes to the roof. Leaks are one of the most common issues, but an old or tatty roof can also look less than appealing, result in more drafts and even increase your energy consumption if it is interfering with the house’s ability to retain heat.

The good news is that many roof problems can be prevented entirely if you stick to a regular schedule of inspections and upkeep.

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Top Tips for Roof Repairs in the Western Cape Winelands

Some of the most important tips to remember when it comes to Winelands roof repair include the following:

  1. Maintenance is the best way to prevent problems. At least once a year (before winter is usually the best time), call in a roofing expert to do a proper inspection or make sure that basic steps are taken to prevent problems from arising. Clean ventilation systems and vents, caulk around openings with a high quality sealant, paint any exposed metal to prevent rust, clean out gutters and check from the ground to see if anything looks out of place. Use binoculars if you want a better look, but try not to climb onto the roof unless you have plenty of experience in this regard. This routine check can help spot small problems, before they become bigger, more expensive problems.
  2. When to call in the experts. Doing a visual inspection over the course of the year is essential, but if you notice any problems such as stains on the shingles, missing parts of the roof, rusted flashings or anything else that seems amiss, call in for help. The same applies if you notice any water stains or mould in the attic or on the roof, or if there are any leaks on second story ceilings or unexplained damp patches in the ceiling.
  3. Investing in the best quality roof will help it last far longer. Another step that is recommended is to focus on getting the best repairs, materials and installation that is within your budget. If the roof is installed by a qualified expert, using high quality materials and coating, you will be able to rest easier knowing that it will last you through many years to come.

If all else fails, hiring a dedicated, professional expert to assist with roof repairs in Winelands will go a long way in ensuring that the roof is fixed quickly, properly and simply.

Dos and Dont’s of Hiring a Damp Proofing Contractor in George

Finding and hiring a damp proofing contractor in George (or anywhere else, for that matter) does not have to be an outright nightmare… as long as you take a bit of time beforehand to make sure that you are hiring the best person for the job, that is.

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The trouble is; many people only start thinking about things such as damp proofing when something goes wrong. Perhaps you have discovered a persistent leak, a cold, damp basement or garage that will not ever seem to dry out or you cannot get rid of lingering mould in the ceiling. Whatever the case, waiting until things reach critical point can lead to hasty decisions being made when starting the hunt for a contractor.

Taking a moment to prepare yourself will help you know exactly what to look for (and what to avoid), enabling you to find a suitably qualified, experienced expert who will be more than equipped to assist with damp proofing in George.

What You Should Know About Hiring Damp Proofing Contractors

The beautiful Garden Route is one of the most scenic parts of the Western Cape, and for the most part, this region has been blessed with a mild climate that is usually temperate. Rain and moisture however are among the factors that help keep this area so green and fresh. While this is great news from a visual point of view, it is not always ideal as far as damp prevention and proofing goes. To help you find just the right damp proofing expert in George, consider these dos and don’ts…

Before…

  • Do get estimates. This will help you get a list of possible choices, along with estimates in writing from each that will be used to make your final decision. Be careful of choosing by low price alone however. There may be a reason that their price is so low (and it may not be a good reason, either).
  • Do ask questions. How many similar projects has the contractor completed? Are any sorts of plans or permits needed? Does the contractor have any references? Is the contractor covered by insurance? Will sub-contractors be used, and if so, are they also licensed and insured?
  • Don’t pay cash. Instead, be sure that you fully understand payment options. Depending on the size and scope of the project, you could try to make regular payment during the project’s completion. If it is a smaller job, you could find out about paying on project completion, or paying a deposit followed by the remainder on project completion. This approach will go a long way in covering you in the event of delays or issues.
  • Don’t forget to get everything in writing. A contract is essential – even if you draw it up yourself and get it signed. It does not have to be overly complicated. It should be clear, outlining the project at hand, the agreed upon costs, payment terms, contractor’s information, estimate start and completion dates, use of sub-contractors and suppliers and all other relevant information. You could also consider getting a list of materials that will be required, along with who is responsible for purchasing the materials. Things like warranties and an idea of what you can expect should also be discussed beforehand. For example, you could find out whether trash collection is included, or if it is possible to ask for a ‘broom clause’ that includes clean up as well as any messes made during the job. Do not forget to be fully clear on any promises made during talks or calls – write these down so that you have them in writing.

After…

  • Do keep records. Keep all relevant paperwork somewhere safe – including contracts, invoices and anything else related to the job. Photos at various stages of the project are also recommended. If you have any issues at any point, having all of your information kept safely will be very useful.
  • Don’t pay until you are fully satisfied. That does not mean you have to be fussy or unfair – it does mean that you should only pay once the work has been done according to the plan and promises of the contractor. Remember that tip about getting things in writing? This is why it is so essential.
  • Do use a checklist. It will save you plenty of time and stress to have a simple checklist that outlines all the work that has been promised in the contract, warranties for material and labour, proof that sub-contractors and suppliers have been paid, that the job site has been cleaned up according to the arrangements you made and that you have inspected and approved the work that has been done.

This may seem like a lot of work, but in the long run, you will save yourself a world of potential stress by being prepared. The last thing you want after dealing with damp issues is to deal with contractor issues as well… especially if the problem is not properly fixed. Be smart and choose George damp proofing contractors wisely – you will not regret taking the time to do so.

5 Important Tips for Damp Proofing in Cape Town

As winter approaches, damp proofing in Cape Town becomes more important than ever. This coastal city is known for its epic storms, rainy days and strong wind during the winter months. Being close to the sea, damp can already be a potential issue – particularly for houses that are near the beach.

Luckily however, a great deal of preventing damp comes down to simple checks that you can do ahead of the wet season. That old saying of prevention being better than cure is certainly apt in this case – especially as a bit of checking now can save you a great deal of stress (and money) later.

Prepare for Winter with These Tips for Damp Proofing in Cape Town

How do you make sure that you do not need to panic about rising damp? You can start with these five steps that will help get your home winter ready before the storms come rolling in…

  1. Check the exterior of the house for broken or blocked pipes. Often, you can prevent problems with a quick exterior check to notice any obvious faults with down pipes, gutters and other pipes that lead from the house or lie near the wall. Clear out leaves and debris, and make sure that water can easily flow through gutters without pooling.
  1. Check for damp patches on walls or spots on the ceiling. In lower level rooms of double story houses, this is particularly important to spot rising damp. Many houses have damp proofing measures set in place, but this does not always apply to older homes. Any signs of mould or damp spots on the walls or signs of wet patches on the ceiling should all be noted.
  1. Check that there is proper ventilation in the house. This applies not only to physical structures such as ventilation grates, but also to how you ventilate rooms in the house. Extractor fans are very useful at reducing or preventing damp and can be used in bathrooms and kitchens (both places with higher condensation).
  1. Check that the roof is in good repair with no holes or leaks. Sometimes, damp problems can be caused by something as seemingly innocuous as an old, worn out roof. When damp is found in the roof and ceiling, there is a very real danger of wires being exposed to wetness – should any damp interfere with lighting and other electrical channels that run through the house, this danger can be fatal.
  1. Hire a damp proofing specialist to do an evaluation if you are unsure. A lot of problems and potential weak points can be spotted by an untrained observer. But it will save you a great deal of heartache in the long term if you hire a professional to do a proper evaluation. If your house is very old, it often feels cold, or you are unsure how to do any of these checks, having a professional come and go through the house will help to identify any places that need to be fixed, which can then be sorted before winter arrives.

The effects of damp can be devastating… and not only from a visual point of view. Mould and mildew can have adverse effects on the health of your family, too. Left unchecked, damp can affect the structural foundation of your house and even its stability, making it dangerous as well as unsightly. Don’t leave things too late – contact an expert in damp proofing in Cape Town such as Wilcote to assist with a full evaluation that will deal with any signs of damp right away.

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5 Tips for Painting Your House in Cape Town

House painting in Cape Town can be a challenge at times – particularly when it comes to houses that are situated near the sea. But even the areas further inland have to deal with the ever-changing climate conditions that range from hot sunshine to strong winds, hail storms and heavy rain. As such, house exteriors often see the most wear and tear.

Whether your home is in need of a fresh coat of exterior paint, or you simply feel like making a change, it helps to get some inside information on house painting in Cape Town.

Best Advice for House Painting in Cape Town

Take the stress out of exterior painting with these simple but effective tips from the expert painting contractors at Wilcote.

  1. Choose the best quality paint you can afford. Exterior paint is not designed to last forever. In coastal regions, deterioration can happen a lot faster than inland regions. Sun, sea, salt and wind will all affect how long exterior paint lasts; while hail, rain and those famous Cape storms will also affect the longevity of exterior paint. Choosing the best quality paint that you can get is therefore essential in order to keep exteriors looking good for as long as possible. Look for Promoted Adhesion Pure Acrylic Exterior paint, from reputable Suppliers, (acrylic latex exterior paint) or other paint that allows you to do power cleaning without affecting the overall colour and condition too much.
  1. Plan carefully around the weather. In the Western Cape, the weather is known for changing frequently and often suddenly. But wherever possible, try to plan ahead so that you get enough time for paint to dry. The hot, dry summer months are often ideal for this type of project, especially when temperatures reach the mid-thirties. Painting in spring or winter however may not be the best idea – unless you can be sure that the clear weather will hold out for at least a day or two. (Your profession Contractor will assist in this area).
  1. Do a proper prep before getting started. If you live near to the sea, or in an area that has a lot of dust or moisture, prepping is vital. Even in the middle of the suburbs, prepping is important. Do a proper spray down and make sure that there is no build-up of sea salt and dirt that will stop paint from sticking to walls, window frames and door frames.
  1. Smooth out surfaces and apply a primer. Depending on the condition of the current paint, you may need to apply a primer before starting the paint layers. Uneven wall finishes, bumpy patches and other imperfections can all be smoothed over with proper Professional products and Solutions. To ensure that paint can be applied without any problems. If the walls are in good condition however, and the current paint is not in such bad shape, you can skip this step and start painting after prepping and cleaning.
  1. Consider bringing in the experts. If you are willing to tackle this often-challenging job on your own, the best way to start painting is to go from top to bottom, using rollers and brushes. Often, it is far simpler and more effective to consider a professional, who has ample experience with exterior painting in Cape Town. This will ensure that the job is done properly from start to finish, leaving you free to focus on all the other things you want to do. Good professional Companies give credible Guarantees, as well.Often, professional contractors are able to give expert advice to ensure a longer-lasting result, too, which can end up saving you a lot more money and time further down the line.

With extensive experience in dampproofing, roofing and painting in Cape Town and other regions within the country, Wilcote is your ideal choice for a job well done, with exert advice and long term eco-friendly Solutions. The Professional Solution.

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