Industrial flooring failures – Why do they happen?

by Ofentse Sefolo
Industrial flooring failures – Why do they happen?

Understanding the reasons for industrial or commercial flooring failures is vital to the success of any installer.

David Samson, CEO of Samson Technologies is a concrete construction specialist with more than 40-years of industry-specific knowledge and experience. He shares an excerpt from his Construction Chat, focussing on the damaging effects of water on concrete.

Harmful effects of water on concrete

The quantity and timing of water incorporation during industrial flooring installation is often one of the most precarious processes, and if not done correctly, can cause a major dilemma known as “bleed-water”.

Bleed-water accumulation on the surface of freshly laid concrete for an industrial floor.
Bump cutter

Concrete in the fresh state tends to expel excess water to its requirements. If this bleed-water is not correctly handled, the increase in the surface water/cement ratio destroys the surface strength and its resistance to abrasion.

After the bleed, the best strength concrete is at the underside of the slab and so one should flip it over, which is obviously impractical.

How to treat bleed-water

Firstly, excess water should be removed by dragging a water-filled hose across the surface of the slab and ejecting the water to the side.

To correct the damage of bleed-water, the slab should be straightened using a bump cutter.

One of the best methods to correct the damage of bleed-water is the application of a suitable dry-shake hardener, which if correctly applied, will correct the surface water/cement ratio and thus provide a 60 MPa plus surface onto a design strength 25-30 MPa concrete.

Dry Shake Application

Liquid hardeners cannot improve surface strength. They only correct lack of hydration from poor curing. However, liquid hardeners used as densifiers can assist in the prevention of oil penetration and dirt adhesion, thus promoting ease of cleaning.

Our sincere thanks and appreciation to David Samson for the information contained in this article.

For more information, contact Samson Technologies:
Tel: +27 11 466 2666
Email: info@samson.co.za
Website: www.samson.co.za

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