At first glance, you could think concrete is so tough that no amount of water or other liquid could damage it. In fact, concrete is porous and is susceptible to what many refer to as concrete cancer. Once water penetrates the concrete, it becomes weak and can crack and chalk. This also leads to staining, depending upon the type of liquid that enters it. One sign of concrete cancer is the rust mark. This is created by water rusting the steel set in the concrete.
It’s very important that concrete is kept waterproofed. In order to do this, there are a number of products that can help.
Types of Concrete Waterproofing
· Sealers: As the name suggests, sealers act to seal the concrete and prevent water and other liquids from entering. There are two main types of sealers: a type that penetrates the concrete and the other is film-forming. The penetrative type is mixed with concrete and permanently becomes a part of it. Film-forming sealers involve placing a layer of sealant over the concrete. This film requires regular maintenance and reapplication. It is also the type used in decorative concreting applications and can be epoxy, acrylic or polyurethane.
· Crystalline: This type of concrete waterproofing application also becomes permanently set within the concrete. A chemical reaction between the crystalline and the concrete and the water takes place. Crystals are produced and the gaps within the concrete are filled – creating a waterproof material.
· Membranes: Another concrete waterproofing substance is that of membranes. Either in a sheet or liquid form, membrane sheets are stuck to the surface of the concrete, whilst liquid membranes provide a rubber coating.
Depending upon the type of waterproofing application you use, the concrete will be out of action for a certain period of time. It’s very important that the manufacturer’s guidelines are followed. You can use different types of applications on existing or new builds prior to pouring. Others actually purge out odours and stains that have contaminated old concrete and/or increase its density.
Concrete Waterproofing: Supply and Treatment
A concrete waterproofing professional is best placed to deal with any issue you are experiencing. Waterproofing is a serious matter that has the potential to damage the entire structure of the building.
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