Joint sealing is an important maintenance and upkeep task for commercial buildings, parking garages, and concrete surfaces. Anywhere that two pieces of material come together creates a joint, whether that’s sections of a concrete exterior of a building, sections of a parking garage floor, or sections of a concrete sidewalk.
Most concrete joints are classified as expansion joints. They’re put there intentionally to allow for expansion and contraction of the concrete surface. Expansion joints on buildings are designed to relieve stress on the building materials when it moves due to temperature changes, wind, or seismic events. Before the use of expansion joints, buildings would crack when these events occurred because of the stress on the building material.
Joints need regular sealing to prevent water infiltration of the structure or surface. Water is the enemy when it comes to buildings and parking garages. Even a small amount of water seeping into the surface over time can cause major problems, like interior leaks and the possibility of mold that comes with it. If enough water infiltration occurs, it can affect the structural integrity of the building.
Joint sealing also helps keep dirt and debris out of the joints, which can impact the exterior appearance of your building and cause deterioration over time as well.
For flat surfaces, joint sealing is a relatively simple process that involves filling the joints with an appropriate silicone or polyurethane product that hardens as it dries. There are a wide range of joint sealing products available, but it’s important to select the right one and apply it properly for the best seal.
Expansion joint sealing for buildings and parking garages is a little more complex but follows the same basic concept of using an appropriate product to fill the space between materials.
Regular inspection of expansion joints can help you identify when they should be sealed again to prevent water infiltration and protect the exterior of your building or parking garage.