GEORGE DONNELLY TESTING AND INSPECTIONS Los Angeles (626) 827-4848 / Arkansas (501) 915-0626
Linked to this page are two specifications for the performance of concrete moisture testing. One offers testing by calcium chloride or the "moisture dome" method. The second offers testing through the use of probes reading relative humidity levels within the concrete slab. A discussion comparing these test methods is available on the page entitled "Calcium Chloride vs. In-situ Relative Humidity"
If you are unable to either open and print the file or download it to your system, please feel free to call our offices at (501) 915-0626 and we will fax a copy to you.
The attached test specifications suggest that such testing be included in section 01450 and not within section 9 which deals with interior finishes. We are aware of the fact that C.S.I. has changed their format for writing construction specifications. The numbering system we used was based on their old system. This will be updated when time allows. It has long been our belief that concrete moisture vapor emission testing should not be the responsibility of a flooring contractor. Concrete quality testing is not performed by the concrete contractor. Steel weld testing is not performed by the structural steel contractor. Why then should a flooring contractor be testing for moisture vapor emission from a concrete slab? The Carpet and Rug Institute's Standard for Installation of Commercial Carpet, CRI 104-1996 section 6.3, requires an owner or general contractor to submit a report to the flooring contractor regarding slab moisture and surface alkalinity. The World Floor Covering Association has also taken the position that concrete slab dryness testing should not be performed by floor covering contractors. To see a copy of their "white paper" on concrete dryness testing, follow this link: https://www.fcica.com/educational-opportunities/white-papers
If the Architectural, Design and Construction communities will embrace the test standards as written, it is our opinion that there will be far fewer moisture related floor covering failures. Proper testing, performed under proper conditions, reported directly to the owner should encourage pro-active remedial treatment of non-compliant slabs, before the flooring is installed.
The cost of controlling moisture vapor emission or excessive surface alkalinity is not cheap. However, the cost of performing this work before flooring, furniture, fixtures and people have moved onto a floor is minimal when compared to having all of the above move back off of the floor to make repairs.
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To purchase original copies of ASTM documents and standards referenced in our specifications follow this link: www.astm.org
For a comprehensive understanding of this and related subjects we offer a seminar series on DVD that will guide you to an understanding of floor covering systems, concrete floor slabs and how to prevent failures! Please call (501) 915-0626