Protecting concrete usually means shielding it from the elements of nature or from harsh manmade chemicals. But it’s not just concrete that needs such protection. Corrugated metal pipe, steel surfaces, material hoppers, rail cars and masonry all can come in contact with corrosive or abrasive materials or harsh conditions.
The geotechnical needs of DOTs and other agencies responsible for roads and bridges are vast. Issues include: Culvert repair Soil stabilization Void filling Concrete slab lifting Sinkhole remediation Slope control Slough control in tunneling
Contractor: A.C.C. Spray Foam & Coatings
Client: Oregon D.O.T.
Problem: Winchester Creek flows through a box culvert running underneath U.S. Highway 101 along the Oregon coast. The seal had broken away from a joint about 70 feet down the culvert and the creek was washing the soil from behind the culvert. This erosion was undermining the road bed.
Solution: A.C.C. owner Andrew Kuperstein and his crew drilled holes through the culvert wall and injected Prime Flex 985 LX 20 through 6’ pipes to fill the voids, stabilize the soil and prevent future erosion. The 985 is a two-component polyurethane that expands and cures to form a closed cell structural foam with excellent compressive strength needed under the highway.
Challenges: The site is on a tidal estuary, so work could only be done during low tide, which meant starting at 5 a.m. for a few hours and again at 7 p.m. for a few hours. An added wrinkle was a generator malfunction that prevented them from using their pump for part of the job. Fortunately the Prime Flex 985 is a versatile product that they could batch mix and pour into the joint.
Outcome: “The product worked like it’s supposed to,” said Kuperstein. “It’s a nice product to work with; it’s nice that it doesn’t have to go through the equipment.” The job was a success and Kuperstein has been asked to go back in the summer and seal a crack he discovered on the other side of the culvert that is starting to wash out. For that project he’ll use Prime Flex 900 XLV and the activated oakum technique to seal the crack.