GEORGE DONNELLY TESTING AND INSPECTIONS Arkansas (501) 915-0626 / Los Angeles (626) 827-4848
This collection of photos may help you understand conditions which are often referred to as "Floor Covering Failures".
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Picture shows sheet vinyl flooring installed with a water based adhesive over VAT installed with a solvent based adhesive. Moisture was breathing through the VAT until the non-porous sheet vinyl started trapping moisture and caused an adhesive failure.
Picture shows the open space after removal of 18" x 18" vinyl floor tile, installed with a water based adhesive over a concrete slab with excessive moisture vapor emission. The adhesive never cured and the volume of "adhesive" material had grown to double the volume that was placed by the installer with a trowel.
Picture shows VCT which has shattered. This was caused by the use of a gypsum based patching material over a concrete slab with a moisture vapor emission problem. The gypsum swelled as it absorbed moisture, causing a high spot that the tile could not conform to.
This facility had numerous areas where VCT was cracking over raised hard lumps under the tile. The photo shows an expansive contaminant (gold/brown spot) in the concrete slab that has caused a rupture of the concrete slab surface.
Picture shows adhesive which is blistering off of the substrate. This condition was caused by extremely porous concrete, to which the adhesive was unable to properly bond.
Picture shows the bottom side of a vinyl composition tile. A gypsum based patching material was used to level the concrete substrate. The dark spots are fungi, its growth is encouraged by a combination of moisture and starch found in the gypsum based patch. This is a growing concern as the issue is not just a floor failure, but potentially serious health effects on employees and tenants.
Picture shows a properly placed calcium chloride, concrete moisture vapor emission test.
Picture shows instruments used to read or measure in-situ concrete relative humidity.
Picture shows a change in the properties of a hard-set adhesive used to install rubber floor tiles. The adhesive was affected by residue from an asbestos abatement procedure. The chemical reaction caused the adhesive to exhibit elastomeric properties and allow the rubber tiles to bubble and buckle.
Photograph shows an epoxy floor coating that blistered due to excessive concrete moisture vapor emission. Note the crack in the concrete slab surface.
This facility had conductive vinyl floor tile bonded with an epoxy adhesive system in their labs. Blisters in the tiles released liquid water when pierced with a knife point.
This facility was losing 100% of its resilient flooring. The amount of water found under floor tiles was hard to believe. The next two pictures were taken at the same project.
This photo shows moisture oozing up through micro cracks in the concrete. The picture was taken after flooring removal and grinding the concrete surface with a diamond turbo blade.
Due to the conditions shown in the two preceding photos a core was removed from the concrete slab. After the sand layer was removed from over the vapor retarder we were able to see water droplets on the under side of the retarder. As the water converted to vapor it was able to pass through the retarder and concrete gaining entry to the building envelope and failing the flooring adhesives!
This home had a plywood subfloor nailed to a concrete slab-on-grade. Excessive moisture passed through the plywood causing the wood plank flooring to buckle. Also see the next picture!
In the home noted above, this picture shows fungal growth on the adhesive used to hold the plank flooring. Once again the floor failure is secondary to health concerns created by excessive moisture emitting from a concrete slab.
Most of these failures could have been prevented through proper moisture vapor emission or in-situ concrete relative humidity testing along with bond testing, before the flooring was installed. Please feel free to call our office for additional information regarding these pictures or for assistance with your project. Thank you for visiting our site.