Although the water is redirected in the inventive solution to a leaking pipe penetration in the video above, the problem has not been resolved. Moisture can still pass through the pipe penetration. The drip tray can hide visible signs of concrete cancer, such as delamination, spalling, calcium deposits (e.g. calthemite stalactites), efflorescence (salt deposits), and rust stains caused by embedded reinforcing steel. Corrosion of reinforcing steel and other embedded metals is the leading cause of deterioration in concrete.
This is why installing drip trays/drip pans are a short-term solution. They re-direct water leaks in concrete slab ceilings, but they do not fix the root cause. To protect against asset deterioration, to ensure a longer asset lifetime and avoid an increased long-term capital cost, we recommend leak sealing injections that will stop water from entering and travelling through the pathway of the core hole in the concert slab. Concrete repairs are also advised as part of the solution if required.
Why is leaking pipe penetrations a common problem?
Gas, water, sewer and electrical lines are often damaged by leaks around pipe penetrations and core holes. During construction, they are often sealed with cement-based water plugs or patches from the inside. With time, the concrete bond breaks, allowing water to leak around the pipe penetration. Ultimately, water leaks through the wall or slab around the pipe because the plug does not seal all the gaps. In addition, when a hole for the pipe is drilled through the concrete wall or slab, the coring process can damage the concrete structure by creating cracks or breaking it into pieces. This can provide a direct path for water to pass through the concrete.
If water is able to find a pathway through cracks and air voids present in concrete, it will easily carry minerals to the underside of the structure, including calcium hydroxide and calcium ion. When the leachate solution makes contact with the carbon dioxide in the air, it causes a chemical reaction, which deposits calcium carbonate on the outside of the concrete structure.
Leachate may also transport and deposit other trace elements, such as iron from rusted reinforcing steel. This may give the calthemites an orange or red tint. The sight of calthemite is a visual sign that calcium is being leached from the concrete structure and may indicate that the concrete is gradually degrading. In steel-reinforced concrete, the presence of water, oxygen and chlorides breaks down the alkaline protection provided by the concrete to the steel, and this can lead to the development of concrete cancer if left untreated.
A correct and cost-effective solution
Singapore Waterproofing leak sealing injection and remedial waterproofing specialists frequently carry out leak sealing injections that will stop water from entering and travelling through the pathway of the core hole in the concrete slab.
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