Monsoon Trauma [June 2012]

Rains cause leakages from windows with people craving for preventive solutions; Satish Kumar, Director at Elumatec India explains the innovative methods
Every year India receives heavy rainfall causing havoc in various parts of the country leading to major traffic congestion in roads, railways and air traffic. Leave alone traffic, the mobile network also gets jammed causing major communication gaps. On the other hand, this period is considered as the busiest time for window producers to complete the windows work as the interiors painting and carpentry work could be done during the monsoon season.
With monsoon comes various water related problems, leakages being one of the most common and dreaded during the season. As a general practice we use silicone sealant to prevent the leakages; however this cannot be the universal solution. At times one uses it in excess and after the monsoon there are lumps found everywhere whereas during summer, the silicone blooms and streaks the profile and glass. A smart fabricator would use additional locking points and makes the window tight shut all around; however, if the corners of the gaskets are not glued, there is are possibilities of water seepage.In one particular case it was found that the water entered through the glass gasket in the shutter. The wind gust created a gap around the glass and gasket. After the gust receded the gasket would be pushed back, the water in between pushed down into the profile. The gasket and the glass actually acted like a pump and pushed water into the shutter and the water started dripping through the corners. In another case where the customer had a granite sill, the water seeped in due to venturi effect no matter how much sealant was applied.
So the question comes, whether we should make our window watertight externally or internally?
The European systems introduced a central gasket and an internal peripheral gasket – idea is to allow water to seep in and seal the gasket with its own pressure. The water drainage slot and glass ventilation slot in the shutter too allows water to leak outside preventing it from entering inside. Further, the drainage slots covered with drainage caps prevent wind pressure from blowing the water back and also avoids the whistling noise. Absence of drainage caps on windows leads to these problems.A couple of years back a hardware company launched a sliding system called GOSS with a special drainage system called T-REX which could drain 8 litres of water per minute. The idea was to allow the water in the channel and drain it out from the middle between the two shutters – amazingly simple!Several other ideas also exist, readers are welcome to share their innovations too as monsoon is not too far!

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