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Wrap Structural Posts In Waterproofing Tape?

 
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Old 05-02-2019, 10:50 PM   #1
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Wrap Structural Posts In Waterproofing Tape?


Lots of talk on here about preventing possible rot when posts are set into the ground, where rot is most common at the ground to post area. Would wrapping the post with waterproofing tape 6" below and 6" above grade help prevent rot? You see posts tarred, but would tape do the trick? Hold up to time?

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Old 05-03-2019, 12:49 PM   #2
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Re: Wrap Structural Posts In Waterproofing Tape?


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Originally Posted by pathbuilder View Post
Lots of talk on here about preventing possible rot when posts are set into the ground, where rot is most common at the ground to post area. Would wrapping the post with waterproofing tape 6" below and 6" above grade help prevent rot? You see posts tarred, but would tape do the trick? Hold up to time?

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Unless there's tape out way better than any I used no. I was just telling another vendor at the market who was showing me pics of her new shed that had cedar wrapped post which she intended to put dirt around to built up a ramp for her lawn tractor to coat those with tar and put gravel around them before the dirt. I've seen it attempted with aluminum cladding, huge fail.

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Old 05-03-2019, 02:10 PM   #3
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Re: Wrap Structural Posts In Waterproofing Tape?


I dunno, but for the last couple years the city has been going around to all the utility poles and digging down a few inches to add some kind of wrap on them where they meet the ground. Half in the dirt, half above it.
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Old 05-03-2019, 02:38 PM   #4
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Re: Wrap Structural Posts In Waterproofing Tape?


The problem as I see it with wrapping a post is that wood absorbes water then wicks it to other parts of the posts. If water wicks from the uncovered area to the area wrapped then it will stay there for a very long time. This wouldnot be a good thing as the wrap will tend to make the water stay there.

Using PT or ground contact rated posts is the much better but some of that stuff is rather ugly. I think a better sceme would be to place the post in the ground with about 4" of gravel all around it or use raised post bases at least 1 inch above grade.

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Old 05-03-2019, 03:20 PM   #5
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Re: Wrap Structural Posts In Waterproofing Tape?


When I put posts in to the ground I always set it in concrete, then wrap the post bottom at grade with copper. As it oxidizes it washes the area with a copper solution which kills all the rot and mold, looks pretty nice too.
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Old 05-04-2019, 01:01 AM   #6
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Re: Wrap Structural Posts In Waterproofing Tape?


You create a water trough/pan when you do that. I think it would make it worse.


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Old 05-04-2019, 03:08 AM   #7
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Re: Wrap Structural Posts In Waterproofing Tape?


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You create a water trough/pan when you do that. I think it would make it worse.


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It's a traditional Japanese technique that works.
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Old 05-04-2019, 08:52 AM   #8
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Re: Wrap Structural Posts In Waterproofing Tape?


No, you set the copper down on to the concrete, so the water can drain away under the copper's bottom edges.
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Old 05-04-2019, 10:56 AM   #9
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Re: Wrap Structural Posts In Waterproofing Tape?


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Originally Posted by Joe Wood View Post
When I put posts in to the ground I always set it in concrete, then wrap the post bottom at grade with copper. As it oxidizes it washes the area with a copper solution which kills all the rot and mold, looks pretty nice too.
This is cool. Do you have any pictures of the prep before you drop it un concrete?

I may use it at our place to test.

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Old 05-04-2019, 11:05 AM   #10
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Re: Wrap Structural Posts In Waterproofing Tape?


No pics, just pour the crete up to just below grade, make sure the concrete slopes away from the post, then wrap the post.
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Old 05-04-2019, 11:14 AM   #11
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Re: Wrap Structural Posts In Waterproofing Tape?


So the copper doesn't go into the concrete?
Those are just regular posts like untreated doug fir?

I assume the copper leaches between the concrete and the wood, but what about deep down at the two foot or more mark? Is that expected to stay dry, so it doesn't rot anyway?

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Old 05-04-2019, 11:29 AM   #12
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Re: Wrap Structural Posts In Waterproofing Tape?


I've never seen a post rot 2' or more down, except in incredibly well-draining soil. Rot requires moisture AND oxygen.
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Old 05-04-2019, 11:46 AM   #13
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Re: Wrap Structural Posts In Waterproofing Tape?


No the copper sits right on the concrete, if it goes in to the crete it traps the water around the post.
I'd never put doug fir in the ground (I hardly ever use fir anyway), only wr cedar or redwood, I sometimes put a copper preservative on the post down there at grade.
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Last edited by Joe Wood; 05-04-2019 at 11:48 AM.
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Old 05-04-2019, 01:09 PM   #14
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Re: Wrap Structural Posts In Waterproofing Tape?


Quote:
Originally Posted by hdavis View Post
It's a traditional Japanese technique that works.


You would have to make the wrap absolutely water right otherwise it defeats the purpose.


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Old 05-04-2019, 01:15 PM   #15
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Re: Wrap Structural Posts In Waterproofing Tape?


You want the water to get behind the copper Mike, so oxidation happens and copper solution washes down over the wood.
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Old 05-04-2019, 01:24 PM   #16
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Re: Wrap Structural Posts In Waterproofing Tape?


Wood completely submerged in water can be well preserved a very long time. Wood completely exposed to air and allowed to be mostly dry, can last a very long time. Wood that remains damp and exposed to air will suffer the most. The copper cladding solution, providing a runoff of mild copper oxide solution, can act as a mitigating factor to an otherwise less than ideal condition.


Some of the roofing manufacturers use a small amount of copper oxide in the granular mixture in their shingles as a preventative measure to the growth of algea/mildew.
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Old 05-04-2019, 01:37 PM   #17
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Re: Wrap Structural Posts In Waterproofing Tape?


If water can get into it so can air. Rot.


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Old 05-04-2019, 01:38 PM   #18
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Re: Wrap Structural Posts In Waterproofing Tape?


If you are going to use copper why not just use a post made with Alkaline copper quaternary?


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Old 05-04-2019, 01:40 PM   #19
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Re: Wrap Structural Posts In Waterproofing Tape?


Because there's nothing quite as beautiful as clear wr cedar :-)
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Old 05-04-2019, 05:47 PM   #20
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Re: Wrap Structural Posts In Waterproofing Tape?


I built a fence (zig zag pattern) around the back and up the side of my property when I put in an above ground pool in 1999. I used PT 4 x 4 posts and wrapped the the submerged ends and up 3-4 inches above grade with 30 mil plumbers tape.
It's 2019 and they are like the day I installed them. After I put the fence in, my neighbor looked at the zig zag fence and said "Ah, the sign of a restless mind"
I guess he was right.

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