More D See also ACI Lateral loads will be imposed on curbs or walls used for containment of the water during the test procedures and their effect should be accounted for. The effects of equipment, planters, or other movable objects present within the test area should be considered. Note 2—Increasing the amount of water forming a hydrostatic head beyond mm 4 in. The effects shall be analyzed by a licensed structural engineer prior to placement of additional loads.

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In the case of a designer having correctly specified test methods, the discussion can provide valuable information to the rest of the project team, giving everyone involved a better understanding of the reasons behind the testing. Flood testing of a membrane waterproofing system on a rooftop parking deck occurs the finished paving is installed.

Dye is used to color water during a roof flood test; it can help link interior leaks to specific areas of the roof above. Windows, doors, and curtain walls Some of the most commonly tested building components are fenestration products—windows, doors, and curtain walls.

For new construction, testing is most often specified as a quality control measure to ensure the installed system s meet the specified performance requirements for air and water penetration resistance. The most common requirements are for testing in accordance with various American Architectural Manufacturers Association AAMA standards, depending on the system being evaluated.

This requires the designer or specifier to know what type of system is specified as well as the relevant performance requirements to establish the appropriate test method. There are different standards for different components, and some contain multiple test methods or options. For example, AAMA There is also AAMA In this case, specifying testing per AAMA is insufficient—the specific test method from that standard needs to be called out, as the two options vary greatly in scope and complexity.

In previous versions of the AAMA standard, a third option This often results in confusion when the time comes to perform the tests. AAMA For compliance with a specified level of air- and water-penetration resistance, AAMA must be used. It is important to note For testing window assemblies both fixed and operable for compliance with a specified air- and water-penetration, AAMA , Voluntary Specification for Field Testing of Newly Installed Fenestration Products, is typically specified.

This involves building a chamber on the interior of the product to allow for negative interior air pressure and using a spray rack to wet the exterior of the window Figure 2. It is important to understand this test method has a specific definition of what constitutes a leak. For example, water on the sill members that does not pass the innermost projection of the window is not considered a leak, since it does not reach a point where it can damage interior finishes.

For this reason, some specifiers add their own language regarding the definition of leakage, but may have difficulty holding a manufacturer to this definition in the event of a dispute. This information can be derived from the performance class e. In simpler terms, the manufacturer of the window is only held to its stated performance criteria for six months. For older products, AAMA , Voluntary Guideline for Forensic Water Penetration Testing of Fenestration Products, contains diagnostic procedures for identifying known leaks, but is not specifically intended to evaluate in-situ performance of non-leaking windows.

When specifying testing, it is important to make the distinction between test specifications, standard test methods, and testing guides. Each of these types of documents is used for a different, but often similar, purpose. ASTM E for the physical test procedures. Finally, testing guides, such as ASTM E, Standard Guide for Evaluating Water Leakage of Building Walls, are usually more general in nature and cover a wide range of components and procedures rather than focus on one specific area of the building enclosure.

This depicts laboratory testing of brick masonry for compressive strength. The veneer does not provide actual waterproofing for this assembly due to presence of drainage plane and weather-resistant barriers. Roofing assemblies Leakage from roofing systems, especially in the case of low-slope assemblies, can result in significant interior damage when left unchecked.

There are many different methods for testing roofs, but not all are compatible with all assembly types. The most obvious method of testing a roof—flooding it with water—can be effective in some cases, but extremely damaging in others.

Flood-testing is best-suited to inverted roof membrane assemblies IRMAs where the membrane is installed directly over the structural deck, with insulation and ballast or other overburden above. In those cases, the testing is performed once the membrane and flashings are complete but prior to the installation of any overburden Figure 3. For this test, which is standardized in ASTM D, Standard Guide for Flood Testing Horizontal Waterproofing Installations, water is ponded over the system for a period of 24 to 72 hours, during which time the interior is reviewed for leaks.

The depth of water must be reviewed to ensure the structural capacity of the roof is not exceeded, as every inch of water adds approximately 0. This can be challenging on large or complex roofs, where the deck slope may require compartmentalizing the test into smaller areas. Any leaks resulting from this test are likely to produce only localized damage which gets repaired along with the leaking component s.

These risks can be reduced by flooding only small areas at a time limiting the amount of water that could enter the roof , in which case the water can be dyed to provide confirmation of leak sources if multiple areas are flooded in sequence Figure 4. There are several test methods available for traditional insulated roofing systems that do not carry the same risk of large-scale damage. These methods typically rely on specialized equipment to detect wet insulation below the membrane.

Infrared IR thermography uses an infrared camera that visualizes temperature differences on surfaces by measuring and processing emitted radiation. For an insulated roof, wet insulation will tend to retain more heat and cool slower than dry insulation. Since moisture from roof leaks is often trapped in the system for an extended period, scanning of a roof with suspected or known leaks shortly after the sun has set can help identify areas of wet insulation.

The IR camera measures the surface temperature of the membrane, so this method cannot be used on ballasted roofs since the ballast e. Similarly, testing on a windy day may yield misleading results as airflow over the membrane surface may even out temperature differences or cause the wet areas to cool off to the same temperature as the surroundings before the scan is made.

IR scanning of a roof is relatively efficient since large roof areas can be surveyed relatively quickly some companies even offer aerial surveys, which can be economical for very large, open roof areas.

Wet areas will tend to hold a charge for less time than dry, allowing for relative comparison between areas. Similar to infrared, this method requires an exposed roof membrane since the scanner needs to be in close proximity to the insulation to be effective. For this method to be effective, the roof membrane needs to be non-conductive, making it ineffective on most ethylene propylene diene monomer EPDM assemblies or on membranes with metallized reflective coatings.

For both of these methods, secondary verification i. A more recently developed test method uses specialized equipment to pinpoint specific defects in the membrane.

In this method, a potential difference is created between the wetted roof surface and the grounded roof deck. Any breaches in the membrane create, in effect, a short circuit in the system which can be detected using specialized equipment.

This method can be used on both traditional and IRMA systems, but—similar to EC testing—the roof membrane must be nonconductive for the method to work.

For new construction, especially on traditional roof systems, a grounding screen can be added below the membrane or cover board to provide more positive leak detection and become part of a permanently installed leak detection system. This type of system can be especially beneficial for vegetated roofing assemblies where the often significant amount of overburden can make locating leakage sites extremely difficult.

This infrared image shows air leakage around a window perimeter during a whole-building test. Brick masonry and exterior walls Brick masonry has been a common building material in the United States since the colonial period, and mass masonry walls continued to be built through the first half of the 20th century.

While the basic process of brick manufacturing has not changed much, modern technology allows the creation of brick typically much stronger and has greater uniformity of properties than historic brick. While it certainly is true modern masonry manufactured and constructed to meet modern standards should result in durable construction, it is not always necessary to hold historic masonry to these same modern standards, as the historic materials often have more than the necessary capacity to provide a long service life with good performance.

Also, certain properties being lesser than modern standards may prove beneficial to performance. The International Building Code IBC now has requirements for masonry properties such as compressive strength and performance in shear, though that was not always the case.

It is important to specify testing appropriate to both the structure being evaluated and the goal of the evaluation. While a historic mass masonry wall may not meet the letter of the current code requirements, it may have capacity that exceeds its in-service loads with an acceptable factor of safety comparable to the code. That said, one concern with mass unreinforced masonry is it typically does not perform well during seismic events.

In areas of higher seismic activity, greater care must be exercised in its evaluation. Current requirements for energy efficiency mandate the building enclosure to have a specified resistance to heat transfer. While mass masonry walls typically have a lower R-value than modern insulated wall assemblies, they have an advantage—their bulk provides thermal mass unmatched by newer assemblies comprising several thinner layers of different materials sandwiched together.

Changes to the thermal properties of a mass masonry wall, such as adding insulation to the interior, or significantly increasing the interior moisture load, may affect brick performance. Uninsulated historic masonry typically allows moisture to move through the wall i. Historic masonry may have two advantages that will reduce the likelihood of these two events occurring.

Historic brick typically is more porous than modern brick. Historic lime mortars are more absorptive and permeable than modern mortars, and these properties may allow the mortar to wick water rather than having it remain on the wall.

However, it must be stressed the reaction of mass masonry to the installation of interior insulation is still a topic of study among engineers and preservationists. Further, there are currently no established guidelines for insulating walls, only various opinions on the matter. Many designers of renovation projects may equate strength with durability and specify masonry testing with this thought in mind. Additionally, laboratory testing and evaluation to determine the relative durability of the brick, as well as its resistance to freeze-thaw damage, are a crucial part of this kind of study.

SW brick on a large, clear wall area will likely provide suitable performance, but the same brick installed in a shaded location i. Regardless of testing, designers who take this approach much understand when the use of the building or other characteristics of the enclosure are changed as part of renovations, the prior performance of the building may not be a suitable predictor of long-term durability. From a water penetration standpoint, there are many different test methods available for masonry walls, but not all provide useful information.

For example, ASTM C, Standard Test Method for Field Determination of Water Penetration of Masonry Wall Surfaces, determines water penetration at the surface of a masonry wall, but does not provide any information on how much water actually leaks to the interior as opposed to water that is absorbed and stored by the masonry.

Similarly, RILEM tubes can be used to provide relatively quick evaluations of the water absorption rate of a masonry wall. Field surface absorption tests may have limited use in qualitatively evaluating the change in absorption that results from installing a penetrating sealer, but are typically of little to no use in evaluating water leakage.

Water leakage through a masonry cavity wall is more likely the result of a breach in the water-resistive barrier WRB behind the masonry, since masonry veneer systems are expected to allow water into the drainage cavity. The authors have generally found the general guidelines from ASTM E, Standard Guide for Evaluating Water Leakage of Building Walls—as opposed to one specific standard test method—are helpful in establishing the right combination of testing and inspection to diagnose water leakage through masonry walls.

Air barrier systems As far as building testing goes, the testing of air barrier systems is a relatively recent development. One of the first points of confusion is the definition of an air barrier—a system of interconnected components including walls, windows, curtain walls, and roofs that act together to prevent uncontrolled airflow into and out of the building.

While air barrier testing is often thought of as testing a wall air barrier membrane one component of the system , it can encompass everything from single materials to the entire building enclosure. Air barrier products are required by most codes to allow no more than 0.

In reality, most sheet membranes such as self-adhered rubberized asphalt products exceed this criteria by an order of magnitude or greater—much too low to be reliably measured in the field. Air barrier assemblies—essentially, air barrier materials in an as-built condition that includes laps, seams, and penetrations—can be tested in either the lab or the field. Laboratory testing per ASTM E, Standard Test Method for Determining Air Leakage of Air Barrier Assemblies, provides an air leakage rate for a pre-defined arrangement of air barrier products, penetrations, and a window opening but not the window itself—an oft-overlooked element of the air barrier system.

However, applying this test in the field is not as simple as installing a chamber on the interior and testing the exterior. Air leakage through the perimeter of a sample area e. Using this general chamber testing approach on a qualitative basis is simpler and often more effective, since telling a contractor that the test result was 0. Specifications for field-installed air barrier assemblies often include testing of the window as part of the assembly. While this makes sense from a practical standpoint i.


ASTM D5957-98(2013): Standard Guide for Flood Testing Horizontal Waterproofing Installations

See also ACI Lateral loads will be imposed on curbs or walls used for containment of the water during the test procedures and their effect should be accounted for. The effects of equipment, planters, or other movable objects present within the test area should be considered. Note 2—Increasing the amount of water forming a hydrostatic head beyond mm 4 in.


ASTM D5957

Applicable Products: Applies for fully adhered or bonded sheet membranes, liquid or fluid applied membranes or loose laid sheet membranes of waterproofing installed on parking garages and plaza deck types over habitable spaces or on elevated structures. This standard is not intended for use on building roofing systems. Test Procedure: Waterproofing membrane and flashings should be inspected and deficiencies repaired. Testing should occur prior to the installation of drainage layer, protection layer, pavers or overburden. If a protection layer is required for flood tested, the recommended practice is that a temporary protection layer be loose laid and removed prior to testing of the waterproofing system. A containment assembly is constructed to be nondestructive, non-penetrating of the waterproofing installation and easily removable. Containment assemblies are composed of a sacrificial sheet or a polyethylene sheet adhered to the surface of the waterproofing membrane using a watertight seal duct tape.

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