Commercial project specifications are now requiring moisture mitigation testing to be done on new concrete surfaces prior to floor covering. Existing facilities are finding excess humidity or damp spots on flooring surfaces. This excess water vapor may come from the concrete itself.
Water is among the elements added to concrete during the curing process, and it sometimes takes a year for the concrete to cure completely. While some moisture always remains in the concrete, too much moisture will lead to problems in floor coverings.
When concrete is mixed and poured, water vapor migrates from within the slab to surface to evaporate. This process is referred to as Moisture Vapor Emission (MVE), and can be measured with proper testing equipment to determine if the MVE levels are within the manufacturer’s specifications.
If moisture mitigation is required, EPFC will install one of our certified moisture mitigation/control coating systems. We will help get that new build project back on track or correct moisture condition in older existing concrete slabs to prevent future floor covering failure. The base concrete will be treated with a non-breathable and waterproof coating embedded with a crack suppression membrane. This treatment will trap moisture below and provide a suitable and stable base for a floor coating or alternate flooring application.
Moisture vapor transmission is the movement of vapors in the substrate to the surface of the concrete. Signs of undue vapor transmission include:
- Bubbled, delaminated coating or topping
- Soft or re-emulsified adhesive
- Cracked or curled tile flooring
- Mold and mildew carpet staining, discoloring and odor
- Buckled or warped wood floors
- Presence of white salt residue, aka Efflorescence
Testing Methods for Moisture Mitigation
This standard states that moisture vapor emission should not exceed 3 pounds per 1,000 square feet per 24 hours, unless otherwise specified by the flooring or adhesive manufacturer.
This is the calcium chloride method of testing concrete slabs to determine dryness and suitability for the installation of their products.
This test method involves measuring relative humidity levels inside of the concrete slab and finds its basis in testing commonly performed in Europe and other countries requiring concrete moisture vapor remediation.
This requires the presence of a sub-slab moisture vapor retarder meeting the performance criteria of ASTM E1745 directly beneath all concrete slab-on-ground floors.
The test evaluates the water vapor transfer through semi-permeable and permeable samples. Manufacturers and designers can use the data that is often important in packaging applications.
Coating Solutions Offered by EPFC
- Breathable Epoxies
- Ardex Moisture Control Products
- Hydropolymer Coatings
- General Polymers: FasTop, AquArmor, and Resuprime