What are waterproofing membranes?

Pathologies caused by water infiltration are a common problem in buildings. These can be a consequence of bad decisions made during or after the construction phase. For a satisfactory performance of waterproofing systems with the desired durability, a thorough knowledge of the products and their application techniques is necessary. In this article, we focus on one of the most popular waterproofing products: waterproofing membranes.


Origin of infiltration problems

The occurrence of pathologies related to infiltrations can have their origin in different phases of the construction or rehabilitation process of a building. Most of the time, an infiltration problem is a consequence of one or more of the following factors:


  • Attempt to reduce costs during the construction phase;
  • Deficiencies in terms of knowledge on this subject by civil construction professionals;
  • Absence of waterproofing projects.


Waterproofing Membranes

There are several waterproofing solutions available on the market, which can prevent or solve infiltration problems. The application of membranes is one of the most popular solutions. But what is a waterproofing membrane after all?


A waterproofing membrane is a thin layer of waterproof material that is placed on a surface to prevent water from coming into contact with the material on which it is placed.


The benefits of membranes are that, when produced by industrial processes, they have standardized characteristics, such as thickness, mass or reinforcement placement and have specific accessories and solutions for the treatment of singular sensitive points in a waterproofing process, offering, therefore, guarantee of success and being less subject to preparation and application mistakes, as in the cases of waterproofing mortars.


The membranes can be glued, mechanically fixed or simply placed on the roof that they must protect, depending on the type of support material and the final finishing solution.


What characteristics should they have?

The membranes most used in roof and terrace waterproofing systems are thermoplastic (including TPO), bitumen-polymer and elastomeric.


When choosing a waterproofing membrane it is important to take into account the following characteristics:


  • Flexibility at low temperatures;
  • Resistance to high temperatures and UV stability (if the membrane is exposed to the sun);
  • Tear and tensile strength;
  • Resistance to static loads and impact;
  • Dimensional stability;
  • Resistance to perforation of roots (in the case of garden roofs)
Alcochete Secondary School – Rehabilitation of the roof with waterproofing membranes – Prudêncio’s work
Alcochete Secondary School – Rehabilitation of the roof with waterproofing membranes – Prudêncio’s work


TPO Waterproofing Membranes

TPO is the acronym for thermoplastic polyolefins and refers to a type of waterproofing membrane with a single layer, which is applied through thermal welding, using robotic systems.


TPO membranes are not all the same. Each manufacturer has its own recipe with specific ingredients and additives.


We are exclusive applicators of KOSTER TPO Membranes in Portugal

Koster is one of the oldest TPO manufacturers in the world. It belongs to a restricted group of PE-based TPO producers, to which it has added a distinctive feature: the top and bottom layers are produced using the same quality material.


At Prudêncio, we are representatives and exclusive applicators in Portugal of Koster. Together we develop unique solutions that meet the high level of demand from our customers.

These membranes are Ecological, Sustainable, Efficient, Long-lasting. Discover all the benefits of this solution below:


  • They do not contain toxic or dangerous compounds.
  • They are fully recyclable.
  • They do not contain plasticizers and non-molecular binders like PVC membranes.
  • Distinguished with the Gold classification, the highest for sustainable construction awarded by the German institution Institut Bauen und Umwelt e.V. (IBU).
  • High resistance to UVs, ozone and high temperatures.
  • Resistant to perforation of roots.
  • Resistant to all weather conditions (hail, lightning).
  • Resistant to acids, solvents, oils, and alcohol. They don’t rot.
  • They allow direct application over any thermal insulation.
  • Reflect sunlight.
  • Reduced maintenance.
  • Lifespan exceeding 40 years when exposed.


SEE ALSO: KOSTER Waterproofing TPO Membranes


Consult us for more detailed information.



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