Alchemy-Spetec Blog

Sealing Leaks in Elevator Pits

Posted by Anthony Sandone on Jul 21, 2017 1:22:58 PM

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I have been in a number of elevator pits harboring around two feet of water due to water leaks. These pits are usually at or below the water table, underneath the first floor of buildings with concrete poured around them. Over time the water tables rise and fall due to seasonal changes. This causes the soil to move, creating problems in the structure. These leaks are common in commercial buildings, especially if the elevators are not properly maintained.

There are several reasons why these elevator pits spring leaks and cause problems.

One of the main causes of these leaks is faulty waterproofing that was incorrectly installed during the construction phase. This allows joints that go around the elevator pit to leak due to imperfections or cracks in the base or walls. Another cause is simply time itself. As the elevator pit ages, the waterproofing system in place naturally begins to fail. The outside membranes begin to break down and negatively affect the performance of the waterproofing system.

elevator-blog.pngWhat Can You Do?

The solution depends on the type of structure. You're usually looking at either poured concrete walls, block walls or brick walls.

Poured Concrete Walls

In the case of concrete walls, water will seep through by way of cracks. You can counteract this problem by crack injecting with Alchemy-Spetec’s Spetec F400 or AP Seal 500. They both work well in wet conditions and are water reactive.

Block and Brick Walls

In the case of both block and brick walls, movement in the soil due to water table changes can move the individual blocks or bricks - causing gaps to occur. These gaps result in issues like leaking floor/wall joints and border joint leakage/decay. You can counteract these problems by injecting grout through the wall into the outside soil (a process called curtain wall grouting) with Alchemy-Spetec’s AP Fill 700 or Spetec H100.

All of these products can also be used as part of preventative measures during the construction phase.

Want more information on sealing leaks with Alchemy-Spetec products?

Download an Info-Packed Leak Seal Brochure!

Topics: All Posts, Seal Leaks

Waterproofing with SST500

Posted by Anthony Sandone on Jul 19, 2017 3:49:24 PM
 
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SST500-blog (1).pngST500 is a black hydrophilic synthetic waterproofing strip that is designed to fasten to existing joints. 

Overview

SST500 is ecologically friendly and is chemically resistant to petroleum, mineral/vegetable oils and even grease. Not only that, it is also resistant to impact (such as a blow from falling rebar during construction, etc). This product is relatively easy to install as no special tools are required. SST500 continues to function through both wet and dry weather cycles. It is also able to swell to more than 500% upon contact with water, guaranteeing a good seal. Its flexibility enables it to adapt to any movements in the structure over time. 

Application

SST500 can be applied in many applications such as cold joints, pipe penetrations through concrete, construction joints and more. Examples include joints in manholes, prefabricated pipes, floor slabs and secant pile walls. Last but not least, SST500 can be used to seal vertical and horizontal construction joints. 

Want more information on SST500 & other Alchemy-Spetec products?

Download the Info-Packed AS Product Catalog!

Topics: All Posts, Waterstop

The Alchemy-Spetec Injection Tube System

Posted by Thad Brown on Jul 17, 2017 1:27:21 PM

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I.T.S-blog.pngSome call it redundancy. Some call it insurance. Most everyone agrees it's a good idea.

The Alchemy-Spetec injection tube system kit (a.k.a. the I.T.S. Kit) is a great and comparatively inexpensive way to seal floor to wall joints. It is easy to install, and does not require extra parts. The attached hose can be adapted to any size joints. For tilt-up or poured in-place applications, this system can be installed prior to the placing of floor to wall or wall to floor concrete construction.

The system can be injected with Spetec H100 or AP Fill 700  once the concrete is cured as a water-stop or it can be left in place and injected if/when the joint begins to leak. Using this system, the resin will flow into any irregular formed joint. All in all, it serves as a perfect way to take care of any problematic joint.

Did I mention that there is virtually no risk of damage or interruption occurring during your construction process? 

Redundancy? Insurance? Whatever you want to call it, it's a great idea to include on all your concrete floor to wall or wall to floor applications. 

Want more information on the I.T.S. Kit and other Alchemy-Spetec products?

Download the Info-Packed AS Product Catalog!

Topics: All Posts, Waterstop

Epoxy Resins for Crack Repair

Posted by Anthony Sandone on Jul 14, 2017 2:48:08 PM

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 The Problem

Structural concrete cracks are often caused by shrinkage occurring while concrete dries if not mixed properly, thermal contraction/expansion due to seasonal temperature changes, and sub-grade settlement (changes in the soil that is supporting the structure). If not repaired, these types of cracks can expand and cause structural instability.

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The Solutions

Epicol T

As I mentioned in my recent blog article on this product...

Epicol T is a putty with a simple mixing ratio that's primarily used for surface sealing cracks before the application of Epicol INJ for structural repair. Due to its malleability, it can be worked even after curing to fix mishaps. Its adhesive power is extremely high and once fully cured for a few hours it will become hard and impermeable. (Epicol T can also be applied underwater. It sticks to wood, stone, concrete and metal.)

Click here to read more on Epicol T...

Epicol INJ LV

Here's how I described this product in a recent blog post...

Epicol INJ LV is a low-viscosity, long pot life epoxy resin designed for the structural bonding of cracks and micro cracks in dry or wet concrete. The low-viscosity allows this epoxy resin to deeply penetrate micro cracks and the long pot life allows the material to be injected as a single component. It has good chemical resistance to alkalis, petroleum derivatives, acid, diluted organic acids, salts and other solutions.

Click here to read more on Epicol INJ LV...

Want more information Alchemy-Spetec products?

Download the Info-Packed AS Product Catalog!

Topics: All Posts, Repair Cracks

Alchemy-Spetec's NSF Certification Spells Environmental Protection

Posted by Stephen C. Barton on Jul 12, 2017 1:13:40 PM

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NSF-blog (2).pngThe Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) gives the EPA latitude to impose criminal and civil penalties on industries not in compliance. In 2014 enforcement efforts policing clean water netted $163 million in penalties and fines, 155 combined years of incarceration for sentenced defendants, and $16 million in court-ordered project clean-ups.

Having products that may come into contact with drinking water certified to NSF 61-5 (approved for contact with drinking water), ensures compliance with the SDWA and guarantees peace of mind for stakeholders on construction projects where this could be an issue. Even when possible contact with drinking water is not a factor, this process assures the contractor that the product is safe for the environment in general.

To receive NSF approval, each product must undergo rigorous testing and the manufacturer's plant and quality assurance practices must pass a thorough inspection. Voluntarily undergoing such a rigorous certification process is invaluable because it provides assurance to all that, at the end of the day, our arsenal of products are not only the top-performers in the market, but also protectors of the environment.

The following Alchemy-Spetec products have received the official NSF seal of approval for contact with drinking water: AP Lift 475, Spetec F400, Spetec F1000, AP Seal 500, AP Fill 700, Spetec H100 and AP Soil 600.

Want in-depth information on Alchemy-Spetec Products?

Download the Info-Packed AS Product Catalog!

Topics: All Posts, NSF Certification

Stabilize Soil with H40

Posted by Thad Brown on Jul 10, 2017 3:38:43 PM

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h40-blog (2).pngUnstable soil can be defined as soil that will not stay in place on its own, and there­fore requires extra support. It should be noted that unstable soil can threaten the stability, security, and safety of infrastructure and can damage, degrade, and even destroy a number of structures, such as buildings, bridges, and roads. There are a variety of factors that can cause unstable soil including erosion, poor compaction, freeze/thaw cycles and decomposition.

Alchemy-Spetec's H40 is a solvent and phthalate free, water reactive, hydrophobic, one-component low viscosity polyurethane injection resin designed for soil stabilization. You can use this product to stabilize soil underneath bridge approach slabs, warehouse floors, side walks and many other concrete structures.

You can also use H40 for curtain wall grouting, the process of injecting water reactive resin behind a leaking wall in a grid pattern. The water on the other side mixes with the grout and cures to a solid mass covering the surface of the wall on the other side.

Want more information on soil stabilization products?

Download an Info-Packed Soil Stabilization Brochure!

Topics: All Posts, Stabilize Soil

Northgate Link Extension with GT350

Posted by Thad Brown on Jul 7, 2017 1:43:23 PM

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The past few months have been a little hectic in the upper west side of the country lately. In Seattle, Washington there has been construction taking place in the region’s most congested traffic area. The Northgate Link tunnel is being extended to connect the Northgate, Roosevelt and U District neighborhood transit stations to downtown Seattle and the airport.

One of our contractor customers has been an ongoing asset to this project as they have been patching the tunnel walls while the construction of these links have been in progress. They've also been patching cross hatches (the short passage way between two sections of tunnel). The main product being used for these projects happens to be Alchemy-Spetec's GT350.

Click here to read our previous blog post on GT350.

This particular polyurethane resin is ideal for waterproofing and shutting off water leaks permanently.
Want more information on Alchemy-Spetec leak seal products?

Download an Info-Packed Leak Seal Brochure!

Topics: All Posts, Seal Leaks

Waterproofing Residential Spaces

Posted by Anthony Sandone on Jul 5, 2017 3:31:43 PM

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The residential waterproofing market is huge and can be quite the cash cow for contractors who enjoy tending to a constant stream of smaller jobs. Let's review common residential waterproofing issues and the Alchemy-Spetec products you can use to address them.

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Leaks - Concrete Walls

This is the most common problem in the residential market, most often found in basements. You can repair leaks in poured concrete and pre-cast walls with Alchemy-Spetec’s F400. This hydrophobic grout will not shrink after application, during spells of dryer weather. In addition, this product has a thin composition and can penetrate fine, hairline cracks. The application process involves injecting the cracks with the resin, which then reacts with the leaking water to form a durable watertight seal. 

Leaks - Non-Concrete Walls

Many basement walls are made of brick, block, stone or rubble. Leaks in these types of walls require a process called curtain wall grouting (a.k.a. “through-wall” grouting). Curtain wall grouting involves drilling holes in a grid pattern and injecting Alchemy-Spetec’s AP 700 through the wall to form a waterproof curtain on the other side.

Leaks - Floor/Wall Intersection

Sometimes builders will neglect to use a leak seal product at this critical joint in the structure where the floor and wall meet. Even if they do seal these joints initially, with a mediocre product there will be failure over time. When faced with these types of issues, you can inject F400 for a lasting, durable repair. This application process is similar to crack injection for leaks in concrete walls as described above.

For more details on these application methods, click here for my blog series on Crack Injection and Curtain Wall Grouting.

Want more information on Alchemy-Spetec leak seal products?

Download an Info-Packed Leak Seal Brochure!

Topics: All Posts, Seal Leaks

Spotlight: Business Tips for Contractors

Posted by Kreg Thornley on Jul 3, 2017 11:30:00 AM

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At the very bottom of each Alchemy-Spetec blog post, you'll see what we in the blogging world call "category tags". These indicate the general subject matter covered by the blog article. Clicking on the tag will reveal a list of every blog post that has fallen under that category. Sometimes you'll a few category tags on the same post, because the article covers a variety of subjects. Today I want to shine a spotlight on our Business Tips category.

Blog articles falling under the Business Tips category are meant to help you, the contractor, optimize your business in a variety of different ways. For example we've recently posted articles on the following subjects...


How to Market Your Contracting Business

Armed with the right approach and the right tools, you can increase your market presence significantly while attracting more and more leads. I'll briefly mention a few basic points in this article. First and foremost, your website design should be user friendly. A frustrated website user often becomes a lost lead. In addition, your website text should be optimized 

for search engines. Find a specialist to research relevant key words most often searched in your city or state. It's important for site to be well designed, easy to navigate, and easy for search engines to find.

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Benefits of Buying Through Distribution

On a really busy job, it is much more convenient to buy from a distributor that can deliver product directly to your job site, as opposed to depending on a freight company to deliver it from the manufacturer. To make it simple: a distributor already knows the local job site, the area, the traffic patterns, and the key people to make seamless drop offs.
 
We have experienced first hand the frustration of trying to get materials to a project address. The logistics, the timing, the limitations of a freight carrier's route and schedule can drive someone mad. Having someone else handle that can be a no brainer.

Read more...


Finance Your Contracting Business

We're happy to annouce that equipment financing is now available through Accord Financial Group. Accord has been helping countless businesses finance their equipment since 1992. They are a small, family owned business with an emphasis on taking care of their customers. Check out the interview below with Dough Richter of Accord Financial Group.

Read more...


We hope you find the tips we share to be useful as you scale up your business. If there are any subjects you'd like to see covered, or if you have any questions about the articles linked above, please call us at 404-618-0436. We're here to help!

Want information on the Alchemy-Spetec product line?

Download the Info-Packed AS Product Catalog!

Topics: All Posts, Business Tips

Cut Off Water Leaks with GT 1100

Posted by Thad Brown on Jun 30, 2017 11:35:39 AM

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gt 1100-blog.pngIt's time for another product profile. But THIS is unlike any of the others I've discussed in the past. How, you ask? It's a designed to be mixed with up to EIGHT parts water, so you can create large quantities of this gel from the pails or cartridges you buy from us.

What Is GT1100?

GT1100 is a water reactive, hydrophilic, one-component flexible polyurethane injection gel that is designed to cut off water leaks.

What are the applications & advantages?

GT1100 can be used in many applications. It can be used to shut off water leaks in concrete, brickwork, sewers, diaphragm walls, piling sheets, secant piles as well as curtain grouting behind tunnels, concrete, brickwork and sewer walls. This resin can be used to seal water-carrying cracks and joints in tunnel segments by injecting water-cut off membranes and liners. It's also used for curtain grouting and soil stabilization.

Depending on the amount of water you mix it with, this resin can be set to cure to a rubbery foam or a stable gel. Once cured, GT1100 is highly flexible. That's why, as I mentioned earlier, it's suited for structures that have a high degree of settlement and movement.

Packaging

GT1100 is available in 5 gallon pails and 10.5oz. cartridges (12 per case).

Want more information on Alchemy-Spetec products?

Download the Info-Packed AS Product Catalog!

Topics: All Posts, Seal Leaks, Stabilize Soil