Precast sealing services are the critical last step in the restoration process. If the precast is not sealed after cleaning, it becomes like a sponge, creating a breeding ground for biological growth. Precast sealing services also seal the stone’s natural pores to prevent water from entering, freezing, and then thawing inside the stone, a process called precast “spalling” that, if ignored, can lead to larger, more costly damage and repairs.
Choosing A Precast Sealer
Precast concrete has been used for decades to provide durable building enclosures. Modern building designers consider it an ideal material that’s durable and offers minimal maintenance. Through the years, science has advanced our understanding of water penetration and the effect it has on precast. The right sealer not only reduces moisture penetration but it also:
- Protects precast concrete from attacks by airborne chemicals.
- Prevents concrete surfaces from getting dirty.
- Makes cleaning the surface easier.
- Prevents blotchy surface darkening.
One of the most important steps in precast sealing services is selecting the right sealer. From silanes to siloxanes and fluorinated silicones, the number of sealers on the market is mind-boggling. Waterproofing manufacturers have created everything from specialty formulations that help protect against graffiti to color-enhancing sealers. Of course, there are many types of sealers designed solely to waterproof precast.
At Presto, we usually approach the process of selecting a sealer by considering what sealers have previously been used on the precast. For instance, if silanes were used in the past, a silicone sealer might be a more suitable option as it offers superior surface-level protection and helps prevent future biological growth. If anti-graffiti or color-enhancing sealers were used in the past, it could be best to stick with a similar sealer for the continued benefits those sealers offer.
There are times water penetrates the precast. In those cases, deep-penetrating silanes and siloxanes are the industry standard for precast sealing services. It’s important to note that silanes and siloxanes deteriorate at the surface level fairly quickly when exposed to the sun’s UV rays. The result is a loss in waterproofing capabilities which could cause additional problems with adjacent materials like glass.
The Precast Sealing Services Process
Before performing precast sealing services it’s important to restore the precast, if possible, to its original condition. Some companies use a high-pressure wash which can damage the “slurry coat” on the material, changing the panels’ overall appearance. Presto more often uses a low-pressure wash with proprietary chemicals to prepare the precast. In many if not most cases, a chemical-based cleaner cleans the precast without removing the stone’s surface layer. If, however, the precast has been neglected long-term or has deep-penetrating stains, the only option might be to use high-pressure or an acidic cleaner so we can get down to the bottom layer of staining.
Depending on a project’s unique circumstances, accessing a commercial building’s facade for precast sealing services can be accomplished in several ways. No matter which method is used, the work area must be defined at the ground level to prevent pedestrians from being struck with chemical or sealer overspray. The best way to do this is by completely blocking off any area where overspray is a concern. In some cases, that’s not possible so overhead protection is used. In many cases, a man lift provides fast and efficient access to buildings up to 120 feet tall. Other times we use swing stages or rope access, particularly on buildings of lesser height.
Hiring a Precast Sealing Profession
From high-profile buildings like aquariums and stadiums to countless multi-story office buildings, Presto has been providing precast sealing services for more than 25 years. Our commercial precast sealing services have been provided to commercial building owners in Florida, the New England region, Oregon, California, Texas, and numerous states in between.
During our nearly three decades in business, we’ve learned a lot about cleaning and sealing precast on commercial structures. When providing recommendations and pricing for our precast sealing services we weigh a number of important considerations including:
- Which sealer to use.
- The adjacent materials.
- The means and method of cleaning the precast before sealing.
- Access methods.
No matter which type or what condition a building is in, one thing is certain: commercial structures require specialized care and services for repair, preservation, and preventative maintenance. You can read about a recently completed waterproofing project that included surface restoration and waterproofing and many of our other projects on our portfolio page.
If you are looking for waterproofing services for your commercial building, we would love to learn more about your project.
Contact Presto Restoration for a free consultation today.
Call us at 1-800-785-9927 or Request A Quote.