Saturday, November 27, 2010

Asphalt concrete

Asphalt concrete is a composite material. It is commonly used during construction projects such as airports, road surfaces and parking lots. It consists of asphalt that is used as a binder and mineral aggregate. The components are mixed together then laid down in several layers. Finally, the asphalt must be compacted.

The terms "asphaltic concrete or asphalt", "bituminous asphalt concrete" and also the abbreviation "AC" are typically used in engineering and construction literature and documents. Asphalt concrete pavements are called just "asphalt" by laypersons. That’s because they tend to associate the term concrete only with Portland cement concrete. Engineering definition of concrete is any composite material which is composed of mineral aggregate and glued together with a binder. The binders are Portland cement, asphalt. Sometimes even epoxy is used as a binder. Informally, asphalt concrete is sometimes referred to as "blacktop". Especially in North America.

Mixture formulations

Mixing of aggregate and asphalt is performed in one of several ways:
Hot mix asphalt concrete. Commonly it’s abbreviated as HMA or HMAC. This kind of mixing is produced by heating the asphalt binder to achieve decrease in its viscosity. Than the aggregate dries to remove moisture from it prior to mixing. Mixing is normally performed with the aggregate at about 150 °C (roughly 300 °F) for virgin asphalt and 166 °C (330 °F) for polymer modified asphalt. The asphalt cement has 95 °C (200 °F). Compaction and paving should be performed when the asphalt is sufficiently hot. Paving is restricted to summer months in many countries because in cold season the compacted base will dissipate the heat of the asphalt too fast before it is packed to the optimal air content. HMAC is the form of asphalt concrete which is most commonly used on pavements with high traffic like those on airfields, major highways and racetracks.
Warm mix asphalt concrete is commonly abbreviated as WAM or WMA. It is produced by adding either waxes, zeolites or asphalt emulsions to the mixture. This allows much lower laying and mixing temperatures and results in lower consumption of energy. Thus less aerosols, carbon dioxide and vapours are released. Working conditions are improved. Lower laying-temperature also tend to lead to more rapid accessibility of the surface for use. And that is important for construction of sites with critical time schedules. Usage of similar additives in hot mixed asphalt (described above) may afford to easier compaction process. Also this allows longer hauls or cold weather paving.
Cold mixture asphalt concrete is produced via emulsifying the asphalt in water with (typically) soap prior to mixing with the aggregate concrete. The asphalt is less viscous while in its emulsified state. So the mixture is easy to compact and work with. The emulsion will break after water evaporates and the cold mix will take on the properties of cold HMAC. Cold mix is typically used on lesser trafficked service roads and as a patching material.
To produce cut-back asphalt concrete the binder is dissolved in kerosene or another lighter fraction of petroleum before  mixing with the aggregate. When it is in dissolved state the asphalt is less viscous. T the mix is easy to compact and work with. When the mix is laid down to the ground the lighter fraction evaporates quickly.
Sheet asphalt or mastic asphalt concrete is produced by heating blown hard grade bitumen (oxidation) in a mixer (green cooker) until it’ll become a viscous liquid. Now the aggregate mix is added.
The bitumen aggregate mixture is matured (cooked) for 6-8 hours. When it is ready the mastic asphalt mixer should be transported to the work site where experienced workers empty the mixer. Then the machine lays the mastic asphalt content on to the destination surface. Mastic asphalt content can also be laid manually. Mastic asphalt concrete layers are typically laid to a thickness of around 20-30 mm (3⁄4–13⁄16 inches) for road and footpath applications. For roof and flooring applications it is laid to a thickness of approximately 10 mm (3⁄8 of an inch).
In addition to the aggregate and asphalt some additives, such as polymers, and antistripping agents may be used in conjunction to improve the properties of the ready product.
Natural asphalt concrete may be produced out of bituminous rock. These rocks are founded in some parts of the world. There the porous sedimentary rock near the surface impregnated the upwelling bitumen.

Asphalt concrete is often positioned as being 100% recyclable. Several recycling techniques have been developed to remove cracking and rejuvenate oxidized binders. Although the recycled material is generally not very smooth or water-tight and should be overlapped with a new layer of asphalt concrete. Asphalt concrete removed from a pavement is generally stockpiled for later use like a base course material. This reclaimed material is commonly known by the acronym 'RAP'. It’s used for reclaimed or recycled asphalt pavement. It is crushed to a consistent gradation and added to the mixing process of the HMA. Very few of asphalt concrete are actually disposed of in landfills. It happens that waste materials like rubber from old tires, are added to asphalt concrete like in the case with rubberized asphalt. But actually there is a concern that the hybrid material is not recyclable.

Asphalt deterioration includes potholes, alligator cracks, upheaval, rutting, raveling, , shoving, grade depressions and stripping. In rather cold climates the freezing of the groundwater underneath is often a cause of asphalt crack. It may happen even during the term of one winter. This process is called cryoturbation. Filling the cracks with bitumen temporarily fixes the cracks. But proper construction that allowing water to drain from under the road is capable to slow down this process.

Asphalt concrete pavements and especially those at airfields are sometimes called tarmac. This name was given for historical reasons. But they are not constructed using the macadam process and do not contain tar.

Performance characteristics

In terms of surface durability asphalt concrete has different performance characteristics, braking efficiency, tire wear and roadway noise. Appropriate asphalt performance characteristic can be obtained by friction coarse (FC-5) and the traffic level in categories A, B, C, D and E. Asphalt concrete is typically generating less roadway noise than Portland cement surfacing. It is generally less noisy comparing to chip seal surfaces. At higher operating speeds tire noise effects are amplified. The sound energy is generated through rolling friction. Then kinetic energy converts the energy of sound waves.


Etalbond is the brand name describing aluminium composite panels which are made by ELVAL Colour S.A. Composite panels have a polymer core which is bonded between two aluminium sheets. Aluminum sheets are pre-painted. Main applications of such panels range from internal and external cladding for signs and buildings.


Etalbond consists of:
— the front sheet of aluminium that is pre-painted with different coating systems (PVDF, PE, etc). Coating system depends on the end-use;
— the polymer core;
— the back aluminium sheet, pre-painted with primer.
Total thickness of etalbond varies from 3 to 6mm.
Etalbond is produced in a huge range of non-standard and standard colors.


The main advantages of etalbond are:
low weight;
increased durability and rigidity;
easy processing and forming;
weather and ultraviolet resistance.


Etalbond is generally used for internal and external architectural cladding or partitions. Also it may be used for false ceilings, signage, container construction, machine coverings etc.

Aluminium composite panel

Aluminium Composite Material (ACM) or Aluminium Composite Panel (ACP) is a widespread term that describes flat panels. These panels consist of a non-aluminium core which is bonded between couple of aluminium sheets. Aluminium sheets may be coated with PVDF or Polyester paint. ACPs are used for external cladding of buildings (building facades), and also for insulation and signage.

ACP is very rigid and strong material despite its light weight. Aluminium can be painted in any color. ACPs are produced in a range of metallic and non-metallic colors. Different patterns that imitate other materials, such as wood or marble are also available on market.

Applications of ACPs are not limited just to external building cladding. ACP can also be used in any form of cladding like partitions, false ceilings etc. Aluminium Composite Panels are widely used within the signage industry. They are an alternative to heavier and more expensive substrates.

The core of ACP is commonly made of low density Polyethylene or an insulating material that is about 10 cm  thick when its main use is refrigeration insulation.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Let's Talk about Concrete

Concrete is versatile, durable and economy viable material. That’s why it’s the world’s most used construction material. The USA uses about 340 million cubic yards (260 million cubic meters) of ready-mixed concrete annually. It is used in driveways, highways, streets, homes, parking lots, parking garages, bridges, high-rise buildings, dams, floors, sidewalks, and many other applications.

Specification of Cement for Use in Concrete

There are numerous different properties and applications of cements for use in concrete. They include: portland, hydraulic, blended, and cements. To assist in determine which cement is most viable for your construction needs and to optimize mix performance and economy it’s very important to know what is available… Well, we have come a long way from Joseph Aspdin’s patent in 1824!

When cement is specified for a construction, consideration should be given to all types of material available on site. The specification must be flexible, and should allow either portland or blended cement types. Consideration should always be given to the use of available pozzolans (local resources) and ground-granulated blast furnace slag, which provide the desired concrete properties. Ideally, the specification will allow any cement that matches the performance requirements of the given project. Cements with unique or special properties should not be required unless it’s absolutely necessary.

Case when no special properties are required

The specification should permit the Types I and II of portland cement, blended cements, or any other cement meeting the requirements of a GU hydraulic type of cement. The use of slags or pozzolans should be permitted if possible. It may not be possible to use high levels of slags or pozzolans (or Types P or S of blended cements), in most applications because these concretes have a tendency to set, gain strength and harden at a slower rate. This is especially correct in cold weather.

Heat of hydration requirements

Type II portland cement meeting the moderate heat option can be used where moderate heat of hydration is required as well as a blended cement with the MH suffix, or any other hydraulic cement meeting the requirements of MH Type. The temperature requirements of the concrete may be met by use of other cements such as a Type I portland cement in cojunction with sufficient amounts of slag or pozzolan.

Low heat of hydration requirements can be met using a Type IV portland cement (although it’s not produced in the USA). A portland-pozzolan cement which matches the low-heat option (Type P(LH) cement), or any other hydraulic cement that meets the requirements of Type LH will also provide a low heat during hydration process. Low heat can also be achieved via using suitable supplementary materials.

Where sulfate resistance is required

Moderate sulfate resistance should be provided by the appropriate blended or portland cement or by any other type of hydraulic cement meeting the requirements of MS Type. The sulfate resistance of concrete can be improved by the appropriate use of slag or pozzolans.

High sulfate resistance will be achieved with a Type V portland cement or any hydraulic cement that meets the requirements of HS Type. Many blended Type IP or IS blended cements will match the requirements for high sulfate resistance. But also there is no specific classification for these cements in ASTM C595. Sulfate-resistant concrete may also be mixed by using other cements such as a Type I portland cement in conjunction with sufficient amounts of appropriate slag or pozzolans.

High early strength requirements

High early strength requirements can be met by both Type III portland cement or a Type HE of hydraulic cement. Blended cements may contain highly reactive pozzolans like silica fume may also meet these requirements for high early strength. But there is no specific classification for similar cements in ASTM C595.

Resistance to ASR

When potentially reactive aggregate is being used you need some level of protection against damaging ASR expansion. This may be achieved by specifying either the option for low-reactivity with pyrex glass for blended cements, the low-alkali option for portland cement, or by specifying any other type of hydraulic cement that meets option R. Last is also based on a performance test using pyrex glass. Resistance to ASR may be conferred on a concrete by incorporating appropriate amounts of special slag or pozzolans.

Several types of portland cement may not be readily available in your area. Type I portland cement usually furnished when a specific cement type wasn’t set. Type II cement is usually available. Especially it’s true for areas of the country where medium sulfate resistance is necessary. Cement Types I and II represent about 90% of the whole cement produced. Some cements are designated as Type I/II (both Type I and II). It means that they meet specification requirements that are true for both types. White cement and Type III cement are usually available in large metropolitan areas. Type IV cement is being manufactured only when it’s specified for particular projects (for instance, massive structures like dams). Therefore it’s usually not readily available. Type V cement is available just in particular regions where it is needed to resist highly sulfate aggressive environments.

Blended cements are available in most regions of the U.S. But certain types may not be readily available in some areas. The properties that are conferred on concrete through the use of blended cements can be attained by combining a normal portland cement with appropriate types and levels of supplementary cementing materials at the cement mixer.

When cements with special properties aren’t available, adjustments to the types and proportions of materials in the concrete mixture can usually be made to obtain the desired properties by the use of available materials.


Soundproofing is a means of reducing the sound pressure respecting to a specified sound source and receptor. It also includes noise control. There are several approaches to reduce sound: increasing the distance between receiver and source, using noise barriers that are reflectinf or absorbing the energy of the sound, using damping structures like sound baffles, using active antinoise sound generators.

Two different soundproofing problems may need to be considered when you are designing acoustic treatments. So, you need to improve the sound within a room, and reduce sound leakage from-/to adjacent rooms or outdoors. Soundproofing can suppress some unwanted indirect sound waves such as reflections that cause resonances and echoes. These consequently cause reverberation. Soundproofing reduces the transmission of unwanted direct waves from the source to a listener through the use of distance and some objects in the sound path.

The use of distance is straightforward. Energy density of waves is decreasing as they spread out. Increase in the distance between the source and receiver results in a much lesser intensity of sound at the receiver site. In a normal three dimensional setting, with a point receptor and point source, the intensity of acoustic waves will be attenuated according to the inverse square of distance.

Damping reduces resonance in the room. It absorbs or redirects (reflection or diffusion) sound. Absorption is able to reduce the overall sound level. Whereas redirection makes possible the unwanted sound to be harmless or even beneficial. It reduces coherence. Damping reduces the acoustic resonance in the air. It also reduces mechanical resonance in the structure of the room itself.

Absorbing sound is performed easily. Part of the sound energy spontaneously converts to a very small amount of heat in the surrounding objects, rather than sound being reflected or transmitted.

Absorption within fluids and hard solids is low. Soft materials such as neoprene and lead are better. It is even higher in composite materials. For instance foam made from plastic or rubber containing gas open cells or bubbles, emulsion like bitumen and aerosols such as moisture vapor in humid air. Many layers of material can be used to reduce reflections between the interfaces, and to absorb energy from the waves of panels as well as compress waves within each individual material.

To avoid unwanted reflection care must be taken. Transmission or resonance may arise from using stiffness or mass, rather than damping.

In highway engineering and other outdoor environments, panelling and embankments are often used to reflect sound into the sky.

An acoustic diffuser may be applied to the surface if a specular reflection from a hard flat surface is giving a problematic echo. It will scatter sound in multiple directions.

Room within a room
RWAR (a room within a room) is one of methods of isolating sound and stopping it from transmitting to the outer world where it may be undesirable.

Most sound/vibration transfer from a room to the outer world occurs through mechanical means. Vibration passes directly through the woodwork, brick and other solid structural elements. When it meets with an element such as a ceiling, wall, floor or window, which acts as a sounding board, the vibration amplifies and is heard in the second space. A mechanical transmission is much faster and more efficient. It may be more readily amplified than an airborne transmission of the same strength.

The use of acoustic foam and other absorbent material means is less effective against transmitted vibration. It is advised to break the connection between the room that contains the sound source and the outside world. It is named acoustic de-coupling. Ideal de-coupling involves the elimination of vibration transfer in both solid materials and in the air space. So air-flow into the room is often controlled. This has safety implications. For instance proper ventilation should be assured. Gas heaters cannot be used inside de-coupled space.

Cancellation of the noise
Noise cancellation generators are active noise controllers. They are a relatively modern innovation. A microphone is used to pick up the sound. The sound is then analyzed by a computer. After that, sound waves with opposite polarity (180° phase at all frequencies) are spread through a speaker. These waves are causing destructive interference cancelling much of the noise.

Residential soundproofing
Residential soundproofing aims to eliminate or decrease the effects of external noise. The window is the main focus of residential soundproofing in existing structures. Curtains can be used to damp sound waves either through the use of air chambers known as honeycombs or through use of heavy materials. Single-, double- and triple-honeycombs in designs achieve relatively greater degrees of sound waves damping. The main soundproofing limit of curtains is the lack of a seal at the edges of the curtains. Double-pane windows may achieve somewhat greater sound damping comparing to single-pane windows. Significant noise reduction may be achieved by installing another interior window. The exterior window remains in place in this case while a hung or slider window is installed within the same openings of the wall.

Noise barriers for exterior soundproofing
Since the early 1970s it has became common practice in the USA to engineer noise barriers along main highways. These barriers are protecting adjacent residents from intruding highway noise. This practice was later followed later by many other industrialized countries. There is a technology that predicts accurately the optimum geometry for the future noise barrier. Noise barriers may be constructed of masonry, wood, earth or a combination these materials. One of the earliest noise barrier designs was applied in Arlington, Virginia adjacent to Interstate 66. Possibly the first scientifically designed and published noise barrier system was in Los Altos, California in 1970.


Water-resistant or waterproof describes objects which are relatively unaffected by water or resisting the ingress of water under specified conditions. Similar items may be used under water to specified depths or in wet environments. Waterproofing describes making an object water-resistant or waterproof (such as a watch or camera).

"Waterproof" or "water resistant" often refer to penetration of liquid water. Water vapor permeation of is reported as a water vapor transmission rate. Water from condensation is usually separate from "water resistant".

The hulls of ships and boats were once waterproofed by applying pitch or tar. Modern items are waterproofed by applying water-repellent coatings or by sealing seams with O-rings or gaskets.

In construction, a structure or building is waterproofed by the use of membranes to protect contents within or underneath as well as protecting integrity of structure.

Waterproofing is used in reference to building watercraft, structures (decks, basements, flat roofs, wet areas), canvas, clothing (waders, raincoat) and paper (milk and juice cartons).

Construction waterproofing

In building construction, almost all structures need waterproofing since concrete itself will not be watertight on its own. Note that concrete is easily waterproofed with additives. The conventional system of waterproofing involves membranes. This relies on the application of one or more membrane layers (available in various materials like bitumen, PVC, silicate, EPDM and so on). These are acting as a barrier between the water and the building structure and preventing the passage of water. Thus, the membrane system relies on exacting application. It presents some difficulties. Problems with application or adherence to the substrate often lead to leakage. In the UK these membranes are rarely allowed below ground and below the water table.

The construction industry over the past two decades has had technological advances in waterproofing materials. We can include integral waterproofing systems as well as more advanced membranes and membrane-like materials.

Integral systems are working within the matrix of a concrete structure. They give the concrete itself a waterproof quality. Two main types of integral waterproofing systems exist: the hydrophobic and the hydrophilic systems. In a hydrophilic system a crystallization technology that replaces the water in the concrete with insoluble crystals is typically used. Different brands are available in the market. They claim similar properties, but not all are able to react with a wide range of cement hydration by-products. So they require caution. Hydrophobic systems use fatty acids. They block pores within the concrete, thus preventing water passage.

New membrane materials have to overcome shortcomings in old methods like PVC and HDPE. In general, new technology in waterproof membranes relies on materials with polymers that are extremely adhesive. They are able to create a seamless barrier around the outer side of a structure.

Basement waterproofing

Once completed basement waterproofing becomes very difficult since the water pressure is from the outer side (coming inside from outside). This difficulty arises when a membrane cannot withstand a hydrostatic pressure from within the substrate. And the system fails. Water is able to enter a basement through different means which include floors, joints, walls. Many basement waterproofing systems address these problems. But many systems are available. They vary in cost, effectiveness, and invasiveness during installation process. Protection board sheets are specially used membranes in this field are. Basement waterproofing can be done internally and externally. Basement foundations can be block, brick, concrete, and even wood. So it is important to pick the right waterproofing system for the appropriate foundation. Epoxy injection is one of the effective ways to waterproof cracks in poured concrete walls.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Liquid wall-paper

Want to give a unique appearance to a premise? Switch to an innovation of the market of building materials liquid wall-paper!

Are you considering them as analog of paint? Down with errors! This is dry mix consisting of natural cotton or cellulose fibres, high-quality dyes and glutinous solution. So it is a liquid wall-paper. As a result of their mixing with water you receive stylish walls with the structured covering.
Besides that liquid wall-paper is a non-polluting material (because it don't spread harmful substances in atmosphere), liquid wall-paper won't collect dust as there are no synthetic substances in them. Liquid wall-paper will be ideally suited for the people, suffering an allergy. Liquid wall-paper possesses excellent sound and a thermal isolation. Considerable plus at furnish of wall-paper is absence of seams. Liquid wall-paper helps to hide defects of walls, for example cracks, stains. Liquid wall-paper is easily restored after damage. It’s enough to paint over a new portion of a mixture.

More important is that liquid wall-paper as the material is universal in respect of placing. It may be used in apartment, office. Because of high degree of ecological compatibility it is used for furnishing of nurseries. If you have a premise with the raised humidity, it is necessary to cover liquid wall-paper with an acrylic varnish. So they’ll become resistant to humidity.

A variety of color scales and patterns allow to choose the liquid wall-paper that best suits particularly your style.

There are no difficulties in furnishing of walls with liquid wall-paper. Just clear the wall and make a primer coating of walls. Than mix the solution and apply it with spatula. Depending on a thickness of a layer and the manufacturer wall-paper dries one or two days.

Complete renovation. How much will it cost?

Let's imagine that you have dared to make, at last, complete renovation of your dwelling (Euro repair). And you don't know how much money you need. How to receive quality and not to lose three times more on inexperienced workers?

We offer you article in which you will learn approximately, how much money you should spent to make euro repair (complete renovation).
To make euro repair you need from 45$ to 200$ per 1 square meter of general area. Final cost depends on the cost of materials and the value a name of the firm that will perform a repair for you and guarantee high quality of services. Thus, the euro repair of three-room apartment at approximate calculation will cost you from 2500$ to 9000$. Let's learn, why the variation in the prices is so high.
Discrepancy in the prices is caused by qualification of this or that master and, besides, used materials for repair works.
Now we will look at existing quotations for complete renovation.

Works with bathroom fitment: installation of a bath and separate cranes, a toilet bowl and a bowl, distributing of pipes, connection of the washing machine. All these works range from 60 to 250$. Replacement of the heating battery will cost approximately 50$. 
Installation of sockets and switches costs around 20$.
Installation of one door of interroom type will devastate your pockets on 250-600$.
With tiled works you will lose from 3500 to 7000$ considering the price of 8-15$ per 1 sq. m (a bathroom, kitchen, a vestibule summarily about 50-70 sq. m.).
Cost of services of the house painter is about 1000—5000$ (ceilings, walls – 250 sq.)
At the approximate area of your floor parquet works will withdraw from 400 to 700$.

If we summarize approximate cost of the basic stages of services for complete renovation, we will receive less than that sum that was in the beginning, But as practice shows it’s better to increase the budget. Thus it is impossible to foresee everything. However, you can find less skilled workers but then won't wait for the qualitative and qualified euro repair! Plus, you will spend later for additional works which in an optimum variant will be considered as the main works.

The price of euro of repair, as well as quality, depends on two moments: experience and qualification of experts, and the correct organization of work. Don't forget also that in this business there is no discount for wholesale. Besides you’ll pay for the increase of organizational loading at workers.
At first glance it seems that there is an intense competition between private workers and firms. But actually it’s not. They supplement each other and give us the chance for a better choice.

It is necessary to remember that the prices will change seasonally. In our article the approximate prices for services complete renovation are medium resulted. Therefore it is possible to consider them mid-annual. They are peak in August and will decrease up to the winter. The same will be with material costs. And, by the way, it is better to consult with experts about what materials for your apartment will match in the maximum degree. One more nuance. With firms you will lose less time as they will offer you at once all complex of services.

What it is necessary to know while choosing paint?

To make the right choice of paints for repair work in a room or office, it is necessary to accurately imagine what kind of paint and for what painting works it is intended. In fact there are a huge set of paints.
Paints are divided on kinds. Depending on a used basis there are oil, acrylic, epoxy, bitumen and many other paintings. There are paints for work indoors and outside. Also you can find electrically insulating and reformative paintings. How to make the most correct choice? There are some rules which will guide you through the process of choice of paints. These rules will considerably narrow a choice.

1. Coloring of ceilings. Paints that are applied to this purpose are capable to pass air and moisture through the dried out layers. If this condition is not observed, the mold will be formed on walls and ceilings. As an example of a correct choice you may choose polyvinylе acetate emulsions.

2. Coloring of wooden products being in a premise (excepting a floor) should be performed by pentaphtol and glyptal paints. There should be an inscription about its application for internal works on the packaging of similar paints. Number of such paints begins on «2».

3. Windows are painted with the same paints, but on packing there should be a mark about application of such paints for external works and their number begins with one.

4. A floor is painted with a special paint with the raised stability in response to intensive friction. There should be a corresponding inscription on packing.

5. To color the pipes of heating system apply the paints that are able to withstand high temperatures.
These rules will help you to buy paints correctly without any special knowledge.

Repair of walls. The review of materials for furnish

During the wall furnishing, be it a living room, or office premise, the great variety of various materials are used. It can be plaster (usual or decorative), decorative panels (laminated, plastic), a ceramic tile and so on. We will consider only some of them.

1. Decorative (facing) panels. Tree or plastic serves as a material for manufacturing of these panels. Installation and care aren’t forcing big expenses. There are sheet and type-setting facing panels. It is possible to pick up panels of almost any color and a shade.

2. Decorative plaster. It is capable to hide any defects of wall and is easily installed on a surface. It is necessary to note not only various color scale of decorative plaster, but also very a wide range of quality indicators. It should be considered during a choice.

3. Corky material. It is made of a cork tree and, considering good indicators in respect of stability to humidity, is applied for furnishing of premises with high humidity (bathrooms and kitchens).

4. A flock. The small material similar to coarse sand, mixed with a glutinous basis and covered with a varnish. Walls don't need preparation. The material is steady against mechanical damages. It is washed easily.

Door for a bathroom

The interroom door in interior creation is very important element. Frequently it becomes the most essential feature of apartment. Today it will be a question of a door choice in a bathroom.

It is necessary to note, that not any interroom door will match for a bathroom. Why? Because the bathroom is a place with an excited environment, here we have water, steam and moisture. Not many doors can resist to such influences. Therefore the first characteristic to which the door in a bathroom should answer is a moisture resistance.

Among many possible materials from which the doors for a bathroom should be produced are the most suitable - PVC, particle board, MDF. They are best for humidity and temperature loadings.

Don’t forget about door furnishing. It will be better to stop on the laminated doors which are less exposed to different influences, while veneer doors are more gentle. Though now many manufacturers produce veneer doors for bathrooms, which are covered with an additional varnish coat that protects them from moisture.

As to color of a door for a bathroom it is natural that it should correspond to color of all other interroom doors in the house or apartment. This requirement concerns and accessories. Besides, the accessories should be chosen proceeding not only from esthetic reasons, but also from the functional.

Wishing to get a door for a bathroom with glass it would be desirable to remind the direct appointment of this room. The glass cover should be either matte, or minimum. But in general it shouldn't be at all.

Well and at last I will add that any door will serve long if it’s used carefully.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Decorative plaster: beauty and luxury

Decorative plaster — modern trend of the advanced technologies. And not only building technologies (reliability and durability indicators), but also design issues. The given kind of decorative plaster ideally combines in itself both these indicators. However, not always the technology of building and design decisions in manufacture of decorative plaster is at high level. Well, here the market is already arranged under demand which arrives now not only from large firms of finishing works, but also from ordinary consumers, wishing to improve their interior by new modern decisions, but not possessing solid monetary capitals. Besides ability to match in any house interior or a facade decorative plaster has also many of other important advantages. The most important thing is an impartiality to the types of underlaying surfaces. It ideally comes into contact to any surface and besides, hides all its roughnesses, cracks and defects — what can be better? This quality of decorative plaster also causes sympathy of the mass consumer, along with a variety of colors and patterns which allow to realize, perhaps, any design idea. Besides, decorative plaster possesses high durability and stability, and will serve to you for long time, pleasing an eye and cheering up. The choice in favor of decorative plaster becomes obvious, when on other bowl of scales there are wall-papers and wall panels. Cold wall panels and wall-paper are the signs of the last century. Decorative plaster will create to you really unique pattern, will give impression of luxury and a cosiness, and also says that you move in step with the progressive world which is a good judge of furnish of an interior.

Two ways to make a glass cover of balconies and loggias

Popularity of a glass cover of balconies and loggias is a consequence of that fact that in all big cities today such kind of repair work is provided in most projects of buildings. The volume of a glass cover of balconies and loggias is engaged approximately 35 — 40 % of full surfaces of all windows. Let's consider two most popular ways of a glass cover of balconies and loggias.

Way №1. A standard glass cover: on a balcony frames (plastic, wooden, metal) with the glasses placed in them (dark glazing or usual which are habitual to our eyes) are established. This type of a glass cover of balconies and loggias slightly suppresses the noise reaching from street, and raises premise temperature approximately on 2-3 degrees. Finally, instead of a habitual balcony there will be a glazed place — a verandah.

Way №2. The euroglass balcony cover – in comparison with the first method it’s more reliably and more qualitatively done work, but also much more expensive. Euroglass cover means:
— Process of installation of a window profile of foreign manufacture, a choice and installation of glasses or a double-glazed window;
— Hermetic sealing of space by specially intended foam or other hermetic (by filling of backlashes between walls and frames). Correctly made hermetic sealing not only disallow a moisture to get in a balcony volume through backlashes, but also will considerably raise it thermal insulation properties;
— Drawing on a profile of aluminum powder paint. Besides the basic function, it will save a construction from atmosphere adverse effects, and will decorate it at the same time;
— An internal balcony covering (it is made, as a rule, under the individual order). Different materials are used. Plastic panels, for example.

As a result the balcony will look attractive and becomes very convenient. But, unfortunately, after installing euroglass cover you can't please yourself with possibility to keep heat. So if it’s  necessary to build a room on a balcony you should insulate it.

Properties of soil and their influence on the foundation

Before the beginning of construction works it is necessary to collect the information about characteristics of a ground of that place where house building will be carried out. If the official data is absent, do all necessary checks without by yourself. To carry out this work it is necessary to dig a pit 2 meters deep and to define a condition of ground waters and frost depth for a ground.

If ground waters are deep enough (more than 2 m below the ground level) such ground is called dry. The sandy foundation is necessary for similar ground.

The sole of the foundation in dry soil should be established on depth 80-90 cm. Then it is necessary to fill a bottom of a trench with sand in several layers (each layer is 10-15 cm thick). Thus each layer should be watered. Then concrete is allocated in a timbering, and the top of the foundation should be established on a mark of 50 cm from earth level. Then the top of the foundation is accurately leveled by a sand-cement mixture. Waterproof the top of foundation with appropriate material.

If level of ground waters is considerably below the frost depth of a ground but less than 2 m deep than the foundation should be 1 m deep in sandy and loamy soils.

If the depth of frigidness of a ground coincides with level of ground waters in that case process of installation of the foundation will be more difficult and labor-consuming. At such a case the foundation laying should be de below the frigidness depth 40 cm. For reduction of expenses and materials a sandy pillow may be applied.

The bases on a sandy pillow, as a rule, are used under following circumstances:
— For replacement of soil in the basis;
— For economy of building materials;
— For lifting of the floor level over the level of ground waters.

Before their installation it is necessary to fill a hole with coarse-grained sand in a layer of about 20 cm. After that sand pillow should be well watered and properly stamped. In the presence of strongly flooded ground it is necessary to make a drainage, otherwise there can be a silting of sandy pillows.

After timbering removal, by means of hot bitumen it is necessary to finish the foundation walls in order to avoid increase in coupling of walls during the winter period.

Coloring of surfaces by oil paints

Oil paints are used for coloring of various surfaces. Drying up, the paint forms a film which protects a surface from humidity and rotting, and also from many other influences of environment on a surface. It is possible to wash the surfaces painted by oil paints with water, without being afraid of paint destruction.

New surfaces from wood have to be prepared carefully before coloring. It is necessary to cut down all knots and to cut off fibers, to drown more deeply the hats of nails. If you won't take care of mentioned factors then after coloring all these defects will act as hillocks on a surface. After cutting down knots, it is necessary to cover these places by plaster.

For the greatest quality of coloring, it is necessary to varnish a surface with oil. But it’s better simply to make primer coat with a liquid paint of the same color. It provides easier and more qualitative painting of a surface. For better adhesion of oil with a wooden surface, it needs to be warmed up and varnished several times. All small cracks and pores should be filled. It is necessary to wait time while earlier layer will dry up before you will varnish the next layer of oil. But in most cases varnishing is done just once.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

The reasons of humidity of walls

Principal causes:
1. Absence of a horizontal waterproofing involves pulling up of capillary water. Salts being in it crystallize, destroying structure of materials by inflating the pores. Thus it becomes visible, as plaster pieces, fragments of a solution and bricks fall off.

2. Condensation of water steam acts in poorly ventilated premises, more often in bathrooms and basements. On surfaces of a ceiling and walls there are water drops. It is a condensate of water steam.

As a result we can observe dark wet stains. It is a sure sign of presence of hygroscopical salts in the wall. These salts don’t require liquid water for dissolution. The vapor is quite enough.

3. Water influence outside of the building.
— Snow sticking, hit of water splashes.
— Incorrectly executed biases.
Consequently the building becomes flooded.
— Damage or poor made roofing works and water waste elements.
Consequence - damage of drainpipes and a flood of buildings.

Whether plastic windows are safe?

Nowadays thousands of people have chosen plastic windows. They are indisputable under the characteristics surpass usual wooden constructions and are the guarantor of quality, comfort and heat in apartment. But how PVC windows influence ecological safety of the person? Safety of plastic windows consists not only of durability and reliability of a profile, but also from those materials of which it is produced. Thus dangerous vapor of oil products is at the bottom of many serious diseases. Metal-plastic window consists of polyvinylchloride (PVC) which is a powder in pure state. PVC consists from ethylene (47 %) and the compounded chlorine (57 %) which is received from table salt. The PVC profile turns out by addition of stabilizers, modifiers, pigments and auxiliary additives to this powder. Lead is used as the stabilizer in PVC profiles. This causes anxiety of buyers. But in ready plastic windows lead can’t evaporate at all, since it’s in biologically passive and chemically compounded conditions. But nevertheless the European firm manufacturers offer ecological profiles where calcium and zinc compounds are applied instead of lead.

Plastic windows are better at fire occurrence situations than their wooden counterparts. PVC doesn't ignite burning process occurs many times more slowly than tree burning. Therefore the PVC profile serves as a certain obstacle to fire distribution. During fusion of PVC profile hydrogen chloride is disengaged. Because of the pungent smell it is easy recognized even in its small concentrations. Carbonic oxide also appears during the burn processes of all organic materials. But dangerous concentrations of carbonic oxide during PVC fusion are reached through very long periods of time. Therefore various baizes about harm of plastic windows are just fiction. There’s no threat for health of the person is present both at operation in usual conditions and at fires and other extreme conditions.

Additives for concrete

Except cement and sand, the third, but not less important component of concrete is certainly water. Thanks to chemical processes, water helps to pass solidification. These processes are impossible without water. During time of solidification, it is necessary to hold concrete surfaces always in a damp condition. If these conditions are absent concrete will simply fuse, and will have only a part of necessary durability. Pure water is necessary for qualitative hardening of concrete. If the water is potable than you can manage without additional researches. In those places where there is no water pipe, it will be necessary to conduct additional researches in laboratories. It’s necessary for the definition whether the given water has substances which are harmful to concrete. It happens that such that potable water can not match for concrete hardening. The reason may be the impurity of salts and additional chemical components dissolved in water.

The water, which structure and composition are unknown can pose the concrete to serious danger. Sulfates which are dissolved in water destroy and corrode concrete. So, sulfurous water is especially dangerous to concrete preparation.

In individual building there are additives which accelerate processes solidification and raise frost resistance. Also they accelerate water resistance and solidity. An active component is chloride calcium, known as the accelerator of solidification. It also serves as anti-frost additive. But most people can’t imagine what problems arise in case of abusing the given additives.

Frost resistance additives will operate on concrete at the same way as salt on roads and highways performs on cars. This additives cause corrosion processes. Because of that salts of calcium in the form of a solution with water arrive in a body of iron-concrete constructions. They interact with an armature surface causing electrochemical corrosion. Negative properties of anti-frost additives are already known to experts for a long time. To these additives also combined with certain quantities of chemical substances which interfere with corrosion. These substances are named inhibitors.

If you apply additives in large quantities they do huge harm to the not reinforced concrete. For instance, there will be a superficial filtration, stains on the surface. Given defects are eliminated very hardly. In most cases it is impossible to stop such processes, and it is necessary to completely replace imperfect parts of construction.


What is the siding? Being simple on a design, this finishing material carries out two basic functions which are protection against influence of environment and improvement of esthetic appeal of architecture are. The first function, function of protection against influence of atmospheric moisture — a rain and snow, more important, than the second as the dampened construction is more vulnerable to destruction, rather than protected. Besides the huge role is played by a finishing material of which the construction is made. If this building or a construction from sand-lime brick, a problem is not so are essential, as though a finishing material was the wood which especially hasn't passed special processing and protection. To all other facts the moisture creates preconditions for occurrence of a mold and insects which obviously would not be positive features for arrangement of premises.

The second important quality of a siding as finishing material, is its esthetic appeal. By means of a siding it is possible not only to receive a building of the necessary color scale that could be necessary, for example, for shop of a trading network, but also to hide from eyes misses of builders or the rests of an old covering which spoils positive impression of the done work.

The modern industry gives a huge choice of a siding. Except wide assortment of a color score, there is also a possibility to choose the necessary sizes and a material of which the siding is made.