Masonry is a durable material that withstands harsh weather conditions and natural disasters. It is also fire-resistant and can help protect people and structures from harm.
Learn how to properly diagnose and treat efflorescence, an unwanted mineral deposit in masonry walls. This narrated course also explores the benefits and common misconceptions of various types of penetrating protective treatments for masonry.
The deterioration of brick and masonry walls can diminish the value of a building and cause damage to the interior. Moisture intrusion and accumulation can lead to mold growth, structural instability, and weakened aesthetics. Using a professional masonry waterproofing contractor to restore your brick will protect the structural integrity of your building and improve its insulation values.
A thorough cladding inspection should be performed periodically by a qualified building maintenance technician to evaluate the condition and performance of the masonry walls. It should include a visual assessment of the surface and an evaluation of crack repair, water repellents, and coatings. Record keeping of the condition of these items will help in the selection of appropriate reapplication materials.
Concrete masonry units are porous and absorb significant moisture without integral water repellents. Regular reapplication of clear surface-applied water repellents, paints, and coatings will protect concrete masonry walls.
Masonry is a popular building system due to its aesthetic appeal, heat and sound insulation, fire resistance, flexibility, energy efficiency, and strength. It comprises four essential components: units, mortar, grout, and accessories.
For concrete masonry unit (CMU) walls, standard 9-gauge welded wire reinforcement is specified. The ladder-shaped wire has a double-eye butt welded to each rod and is spaced 406 mm (16 in.) in the center. This spacing facilitates structurally required rebar placement, grout flow consolidation, and shrinkage control.
It also reduces the potential for corrosion and provides safer onsite working conditions. In addition, the top 4 to 8 inches of backfill materials should consist of low-permeability soil to slow down the absorption of rainwater. The grade should be sloped away from the foundation so that it drains down a shallow swale to reroute runoff. Finally, a minimum clear distance of 1/4 in. for fine grout or 1/2 in. for coarse grout must be maintained between reinforcing bars and masonry surfaces to allow grout to flow into the small voids.
A water well is any excavation drilled, cored, bored, augered, washed, driven, dug, or constructed to explore groundwater, monitor groundwater, obtain or develop mineral resources, extract groundwater, or utilize the geothermal potential. A water well may also be used for a municipal water supply.
Masonry, whether made of brick or concrete, is naturally porous and can absorb moisture, oil, dirt, fungus, and other pollutants. These substances can cause physical damage and degrade the appearance of the masonry surface over time. Regular maintenance can prolong the life of masonry, but eventually, repairs will be necessary.
Traditionally, maintenance teams need help to keep ahead of leaks. They play catch-up as problems occur and perform the necessary repairs – a wholly reactive model. Innovative sealing technology has completely transformed this paradigm. This unique tool monitors pumps and seal systems 24/7, alerting users if conditions exceed predetermined limits.
Masonry brick walls are built to last long but need regular maintenance and repair. Constant exposure to weather, pollutants, ground movement, and moisture causes wear and tear. If this wear and tear is left unattended, a building’s structural integrity can be compromised.
Although concrete masonry units (CMUs) are designed to resist moisture migration through air space and an internal drainage system, this does not necessarily prevent cracking or other forms of damage. Cracks in a masonry wall, especially those caused by drying shrinkage and creep, can allow moisture to enter the structure’s interior.
CMUs also are characteristically porous, absorbing up to 17 percent of their weight in water. This excessive moisture absorption, coupled with the inherent weaknesses of the block’s design, results in water penetration problems. Regular inspections by building maintenance personnel or masonry specialists should be conducted to assess a structure’s condition and to identify possible problems.