Concrete is quite literally the foundation of many construction projects. It is a critical component of most buildings, but it presents some challenges, especially with newer Vinyl Composite Tile (VCT) flooring materials used in today’s construction. These materials and their adhesives require lower relative humidity levels in the concrete, and the time it takes to dry can lead to significant delays that may affect profitability. Failing to adhere to the manufacturer’s recommended drying specifications can lead to a host of problems, including moisture migrating to the surface, mold buildup, and poor adhesion of flooring installed on top of the slab, not to mention voiding the manufacturer’s warranty.
So how can construction professionals effectively reduce humidity in concrete and flooring materials?
Chemical Mitigation vs. Mechanical Dehumidification
Many in the construction industry have turned to chemical mitigation to address moisture problems in concrete. It can be an effective option, but chemicals present two significant drawbacks: 1) the cost is $6-7 per square foot; and 2) the moisture hasn’t been removed, only encapsulated. If there is ever a breach in the encapsulation, the water will surely find it.
Mechanical dehumidification using desiccant dehumidifiers is an attractive alternative to chemical mitigation. For one thing, the cost can generally be held to around $2 per square foot on a significantly sized building. Secondly, this process actually removes the water – unless there is a breach in the moisture barrier or hydrostatic pressure problems, the water is gone for good! In short, mechanical dehumidification is less expensive and more reliable than chemical mitigation.
In order to be most effective, mechanical dehumidification requires pre-planning. It takes time to remove the moisture with this process. However, when a planned approach is used, this process results in timely and effective drying at a much reduced cost.
Global Drying Knows Concrete Drying
The lifeblood of any construction company is its reputation, and our goal at Global Drying Equipment is to work with you to ensure that you are able to provide your customers with the best possible service. Our top-of-the-line equipment is available to you through a variety of unique leasing options, and our dedicated customer service team will work with you to find the arrangement that best suits your needs.
Contact Global Drying Equipment today, and we will help you get in front of potential concrete moisture issues.