Waterproofing Leaking Lift Pits and Elevator Pits

Cook Group specialise in waterproofing all types of pits, shafts, lift & escalator pits, even earth rod pits. It doesn’t matter to us if they are constructed from concrete, brick, concrete blocks and even metal lined pits! We can waterproof lift pits that are 100 years old, 50 years old or just 5 weeks old. We have tried and tested, proven solutions for them all.

How do we do it?

Have a look at our latest video that gives you an overview on how we waterproof leaking lift pits (takes 1 minute).

The most common systems we use we use for existing pits are:

  • Single component Polyurethane elastomer resins
  • Acrylic Hydro – Structure resins
  • Cement based render & waterproof grout technology

Our specifications usually involve a mixture of systems. This is dependant on the construction and extent of the problem.

Our waterproofing specifications are designed to form a permanent wwater-resistantseal around the earth retaining side of the lift pit walls or within the actual construction of the lift pit.

These specialist repairs are carried out without any major disruption or dismantling of the lift mechanism. Ultimately this means less inconvenience, ddowntimeand cost to the client.

We are happy to work outside of normal working to lessen any inconvenience to you or your client, this could be working nights or weekends.

What Buildings do you work in?

There’s a simple answer to that one, if it’s a building and it has a lift pit, we can waterproof it! The following are a few examples, remember though if you’re unsure about anything just get in touch

We install waterproofing systems to lift pits and escalator pits that are being built, see our seperate section -HERE. We also waterproof and repair waterproofing to lift pits in buildings that are still in the process of being built (they usually spring a leak the week before the lift is due to be installed!), we always to try to respond quickly to these difficult situations.

We carry out lift pit repairs to hotels, large company headquarters, commercial units, factories, schools, hospitals, large houses and the list goes on!

We carry out a huge amount of work to sheltered housing schemes and care homes. We also recognise the problems that can be created when working in sensitive environments. We work with our client (and main contractor sometimes) to ensure that the works we have to carry out are done to the absolute minimum inconvenience to the residents. Want to know more? just click the Contact Cook Group button at the bottom of the page

Why do Lift pits leak?

There can be many reasons why water enters a pit. Usually the reasons are a mixture of the following:-

  • The existing waterproofing system has been incorrectly applied or damaged during construction
  • The pit is too old for any effective waterproofing system to have been originally installed
  • Adjacent construction has altered or redirected the local water table
  • A nearby water main has burst or drainage has blocked
  • The time of year (wet weather can increase the water table)
  • Even water running into the pit, (say from a cleaners mop & bucket) making it look like a ground water problem (trust us we’ve seen this regularly)

How does the water get in?

Kicker Joint

Depending on the type of construction water can enter a lift pit though several ways

If the lift pit is constructed from rough cast concrete (i.e. poured concrete walls in shuttering) there will be a construction or ‘kicker joint’ as it is more commonly known. Water can enter through this weak point. If there are any other cracks or imperfections in the concrete walls or base, water will enter through these areas also.

This shows a classic example of a failed Kicker joint.

This particular lift pit has had the usual remedy installed, a  sump pump. See our separate section on sump pumps in lift pits HERE

Weak Points

Another form of lift pit construction is a traditional brick or concrete block built pit where the wall acts as the earth retaining structure. Groundwater will enter through any weak points in the brick or blockwork, particularly the wall/floor joint or pointing.

This is a classic example of a leaking brick built lift pit

Concrete Blocks

A very common method of construction on newer buildings is to have the lift pit formed from mass poured concrete (usually as part of the foundations etc ) and to have a concrete block or brick inner face built. If water enters through this kind of construction the actual point of water ingress is hidden, historically this has proven very difficult to seal, for Cook Group however we simply use a different product and style of resin injection. The end result is the same – A Dry Lift Pit!

This is a lift pit with a concrete block inner skin during construction

This is a completed lift pit of the same construction as the picture of the liftpit under construction shows, note the substantial water ingress and more importantly the failed attempt to stop the water ingress by painting a cement based slurry coat onto the blockwork. This cheap option may have reduced or even stopped the water ingress short term but has done nothing to treat the actual cause of the problem.

BS EN81 states that lift pits should be fully waterproof once the mechanisms are fitted!

So if you have a problem with your annual insurance assessment flagging up water in the lift pit, leaking Kicker Joints, construction joints, expansion joints or cracks in concrete that need sealing and repairing we have the latest technology that will solve them all.

To sum up, if you have ground water ingressing into a lift pit (or any below ground structure for that matter), Cook Group have a solution it’s as simple as that!

Waterproofing Leaking Lift Pits 10th January 2019