Water Leakage

The vast majority of damage to buildings is caused by water primarily in the form of leakage through exterior walls, windows, and roofs. Determining the cause of water leakage requires rigorous field investigation including the use of meaningful test methods and knowledge of building materials and construction methods.


SGH has extensive leak investigation and repair experience for all components of the building enclosure, including roofs, walls, windows, plaza decks, and below-grade waterproofing. We investigate and analyze building conditions as a prerequisite to developing reliable, durable, and cost-effective repair options that provide the client with a proper functioning building. Investigation and remedial design development generally include the following tasks:

  • Evaluation. SGH employs proven investigative methods to document existing conditions including interior and exterior visual surveys; water testing to simulate soaking or wind-driven rain conditions; and probing of wall and below-grade components to document concealed construction and the consequences of leakage.

  • Analysis. Analysis establishes the cause-and-effect relationship between performance problems and the field conditions. SGH investigations, tailored to the specific requirements of each project, often include the following:

    • reviewing contract documents and other background information

    • comparing field observations and test results

    • examining building samples in our laboratory

    • identifying deficiencies in design, workmanship, materials, and/or maintenance and their contribution to building enclosure problems

    • writing illustrated reports that document findings and conclusions clearly and concisely

  • Remedial design. SGH develops remedial options and presents the advantages, disadvantages, and relative costs of each so that owners can make informed decisions. Once the client selects a remedial option, SGH can develop plans, specifications, and contract documents suitable for negotiation or competitive bidding. We often provide construction administration services to monitor the remedial work on a full-time or part-time basis to help achieve compliance with the contract requirements.