Moisture on concrete floors can create damp to the point that it’s dangerous to walk on and may cause damage such as cracks and pitting that will need repairing. If not treated quickly the problem will worsen. Excess moisture can lead to problems with rot, mould growth and even failure of flooring, roofing and wall support. You can also take preventative measures to avoid moisture. Read on to find out more.
One way to test for moisture is by using a moisture meter. They are a non-destructive way to test a wide range of surfaces. They can detect moisture through paint, wall coatings, drywall, ceramic tiles, floor coverings, wood, roof coverings and ceiling tiles. Impressive! Meters with pins push their pins to the ground and test the concrete. Then if your meter readings are outside of the recommended limits you know you have a problem.
If you are painting a floor, prior to it you should check for moisture. White powder or small crystals on concrete surfaces mean moisture is rising to the top. You can use a simple sheet of rubber or plastic and some sticky tape to test before painting. Simply tape the plastic or rubber to an area of concrete and wait at least 24 hours. If you see a little moisture on the concrete after removing the plastic, you may not have a problem. If there are large amounts you need to investigate further. Remember to check for moisture on each slab, or you could end up with ruined concrete in areas you’ve not checked.
To help you to prevent damp in the first instance, you need to have a good coating down on the floor. 402 Damp Proof Coating is fantastic for this as it can be used as a primer or coating. It works as it’s been designed to suppress residual moisture. It’s available in a range of colours and there is even a winter grade version available!
To help minimise the problem, in combination with your protective coating there are a few things you can do. You can re-evaluate the temperature of the room and consider investing in a dehumidifier or other drying equipment. You can also install various types of vapour blockers between the concrete and the ground in the first instance to help control moisture. If your concrete is installed correctly you should find you have minimal issues.
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