How Moisture Mitigation can Benefit your Flooring Project

Moisture mitigation is vital to flooring projects, and often an afterthought of contractors, owners and architects.  The various reasons and major factors of importance are outlined below:
1. Slabs that are too smooth –  when concrete is burnished at the time in which it is placed, the surface of the slab is closed.  This early burnishing can slow down the release of moisture and therefore enhance the need for moisture mitigation.
2. Unrealistic construction schedules – when planning construction schedules, a realistic time frame needs to be in place.  Although it is appealing to complete quickly for the client, allowing time for the concrete and other materials to cure helps to avoid issues with moisture trapped under the flooring.
3. Alterations in flooring – materials such as vinyl are less porous than carpet, which can mean moisture is trapped beneath the floor with no route to escape. Keeping moisture control in mind when choosing flooring material helps to avoid later issues.
4. Lack of suitable vapor barrier – a vapor barrier keeps flooring protected from water sources and dampness rising from the ground beneath.  Concrete, without protection, can act as a sponge resulting in moisture saturation.
5. Chemical additives and curing compounds – similar to slabs that have been burnished too early, chemical additives and curing compounds retain moisture and can cause delays.
6. Absorptive aggregates – the use of absorptive aggregates can hold moisture and delay drying time of fresh concrete.
7. Alterations in adhesives – in 1992, solvent-based adhesives were replaced by EPA regulations with water-based products which absorb more moisture.
It is best to be proactive during the design process and to keep the potential issues above in mind while planning, rather than needing a reactive solution after installation.
If an issue arises during the construction stage, it may impact your schedule, cause delays, alter your budget, or force design changes.  When proactive in planning, issues can be prevented and the perfect floor design achieved.