When Concrete Sweats
Sweating slab syndrome is a condition that describes a situation where condensation forms on a concrete slab. This condensation typically forms due to a rapid change in relative humidity and temperature. Not all moisture-related problems are caused by a rapid change in outside relative humidity, however. For example, another cause of sweating slab syndrome is water-soluble salts in and on top of the slab that attract moisture in the air and can also create sweating.
The negative effects of condensation and wet floors cost commercial and industrial facilities billions of dollars each year from slip and fall injuries, damage to inventory, lift truck accidents, and, in more severe cases, facility downtime. Problems range from localized areas like a wet floor under an evaporative cooler or on equipment, or a traffic area by a door, to much bigger problems like wide areas that are wet and slippery.
Most severe condensation events occur when a facility is closed-up over the weekend while a warm front passes through the region. When the facility is reopened at the beginning of the week (Monday and Tuesday), this warm, moist outside air meets the cool slab, and the slab starts to sweat. This sweating can be particularly severe, and is compounded in tilt-up buildings built in the last 10 or 15 years that used a silica-based anti-bonding agent during construction. This silica leaches out of the concrete with the condensation and creates a very slick surface that can be extremely hazardous to personnel, equipment, and inventory.
ZOO Fans can help to eliminate these problems through a range of solutions. For more localized condensation problems, simply aim ZOO fans at the problem area. Humidity will disperse, relative dew points will shift and condensation will be significantly reduced or eliminated entirely. Targeted air circulation does wonders for these kinds of problems.
For situations where condensation is more severe and widespread, fans and a smart control system tied to your existing HVAC systems can prevent sweating slab issues and eliminate dripping condensation. How do we know? Because we’ve done it! From Texas to Florida, to New Jersey and Indiana, in warehouses and distribution centers of all sizes. Let us know what you’re up against—chances are good we’ve encountered a similar situation and know how to address it! Stop sweating and give us a call.