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"Substrates moisture content, main cause of pathologies"

Catherine Chauvin, Head of External Relations for SMABTP, highlights the benefits of the reform of the regulation NF DTU 53.2 in April 2007.
This is to set out the framework for PVC floor coatings, by requiring the substrate test before any work is carried out.


Moisture, the main cause of pathologies

"Updates to the regulation have long been awaited by the whole profession and it was introduced mainly due to the large amount of disasters related to stuck flexible floorings”, stresses Catherine Chauvin. "Analysis of such disasters has helped highlight the main cause of the problems encountered: excess moisture in the substrate of the floor coating, which invariably causes blistering and peeling."

Measuring moisture content of substrates

"Testing the substrate has become an indispensable phase and its findings must be recorded in a report… Based on the lessons learnt, the regulation now sets out rules and methods to follow at each phase of the installation process and recommends the use of instruments capable of measuring precisely moisture content in a substrate before embarking on the installation process. This update marks the will of the industry to improve the quality of its work, drawing on lessons learnt from past disasters. Testing the substrate has now become an indispensable phase and its findings must be recorded in a report. So floor coatings will no longer be installed blindly, but only after careful consideration of precise results from tests conducted on the substrate. To achieve the sort of moisture measurement precision required, this new regulation adopts two methods: Calcium carbide and the humidity probe."
"The procedure set out by the new regulation to determine the role and responsibility of each person involved, client or contractor, will help the latter in particular to be able to prove that they did their job properly. This should help reduce its responsibilities in the event of a problem. The regulation is precise and realistic and, when correctly applied, it should reduce the number of disasters considerably”, concludes Catherine Chauvin.

Business
SMABTP, France’s leading insurance company for the construction industry, offers a range of professional services.
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Files

Substrate moisture

Substrate moisture measurement

Products

Humitest MMS2

Four-in-one system: two-pin-contact moisture meter, in depth radiofrequency moisture detector, infrared thermometer, fast responding thermo-hygrometer.
Benefits
- intuitive user interface with color screen,
- data logging,
- firmware upgradable,
- psychometric calculations,
- non-contact IR temperature probe with laser pointer.

Equilibrium humidity content

Also known as the hygroscopic equilibrium, this term is used to define the water equilibrium of a material in relation to external conditions.

Witness

SMABTP, Catherine Chauvin