Water problems are a common, yet difficult problem Greencare Pool Builder workers encounter on most construction sites. It often appears in buildings near waterlogged areas or swampy locations. Water surrounds the building and gradually seeps into the walls and surfaces. This process is called efflorescence. If care is not taken, it can drain from one affected house to another close to it. To make matters worse, some builders design homes in such a way that allows water to easily enter the buildings. Greencare Pool Builder is a leading construction firm in the building industry.
How Does a Building Absorb Water?
Water flows to the lowest elevation by passing through the easiest route in a building. Greencare Pool Builder explained that every house has low elevations because they are built on flat surfaces. This is actually the first step when it comes to grading out lands for building developments. This will also help to control the water flow into the drainage system via the lowest point during heavy rainfall. As a result, before the water gets to the drainage system, some of it would have been drained into the floor.
The Definition of an Efflorescence
Efflorescence, as explained by Greencare Pool Builder, is when building surfaces contain moisture inside. This in return will create a crystalline salt deposit. Once the water vanishes, a building surface suffering from efflorescence will have salt deposits on the exterior. The salt deposits form a grayish hue or whitish color on the surface. Similarly, an efflorescent building may look as if there is powder on the surfaces, like a wall or floor. Unfortunately, it is quite hard to care for such a house because of the special treatment it requires.
What Makes a Building Efflorescent?
Contrary to what a layman might think, efflorescence does not only occur inside a building, it can also happen outside it. The intensity and rate of occurrence vary as a result of the difference in temperature and water content. A house may experience efflorescence if:
- The house can convert salt to a soluble solute because of the presence of moisture.
- Salt crystallization happens, causing efflorescence because the moisture leaves the surfaces, via evaporation. Evaporation of moisture occurs when salt proceeds to the surface of a house.
- There is the presence of water-soluble salts either inside or outside the surface.
Water Agents that Cause Efflorescence
The major agents that contribute to efflorescence in a building are:
They help moisture develop, leading to varying phases of efflorescence in a house.
The next water agents are:
- Groundwater wicking
- Interior activities
These three can also induce moisture formation in buildings, thereby causing efflorescence.
When Does Efflorescence Happen?
A building may suffer from efflorescence at any time, according to Greencare Pool. The issue may manifest as time goes on or when the construction of a house commences. Furthermore, efflorescence appears in two stages:
- Secondary stages.
If your building surface shows signs of efflorescence within three days of using a construction material, then it’s primary efflorescence. This type of efflorescence appears because of too much moisture in the material during its production.
Leaving Building Materials Overnight
A house shows signs of secondary efflorescence if a construction material produces salt with the aid of external moisture. Some homes in the construction stages have efflorescence, especially if workers leave construction materials outside overnight. Once outside, the materials become moist from soaking up moisture from rain or wet soil. Hence, construction workers are advised to cover construction materials and put them in pallets. This in turn will reduce efflorescence risks till they complete the construction work.
Problems During Material Installation
Another way a building can develop efflorescence is when construction workers incorrectly install building materials. Likewise, if a worker encounters a situation while installing a material, it can cause efflorescence. For example, insufficient airflow for the building materials, and inefficient moisture barrier while installing building materials.
How to Prevent Efflorescence
Keep your Building Materials Dry
As stated above, protect unused building materials, especially if you will be leaving them overnight. That way, when you come back in the morning to use them, they will be dry without moisture. Also, don’t leave your materials on a wet surface.
Have a Good Drainage System
The ground that absorbed the water might stay damp, especially if it is under a shade, while some dry out within months or weeks. Therefore, it is good to have a good drainage system to keep the ground from absorbing too much water. But if that can’t be achieved, it is better to keep the water absorption at a minimal level. So, have a drain that can direct the flow of water from your building foundation. You can even let the water flow from a higher elevation to a lower one.
Efflorescence is something every construction worker has experienced on most construction sites. It can make their work difficult as they first need to deal with the efflorescence. They have to do so before proceeding to the next stage of construction. Otherwise, it will affect all the other surfaces and buildings close to it. However, Greencare Pool Builder said that efflorescence can be prevented, and treated if it happens. To prevent it, follow the recommendation written above. And if you have a case of efflorescence in a building, treat it accordingly by hiring an expert.