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    Urethane Foam Injection as a Method of Remedial Repair for Masonry Cavity Walls

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    In 1981, various tests were performed by the authors to determine if the injection of a urethane foam into the cavity of a typical cavity wall system would substantially alter the properties of the wall system and, more important, if the normal adhesive properties of the polyurethane would bond the veneer outer leaf sufficiently to prevent loosening of the outer leaf during periods of excessive movement. Tests included both laboratory tests on cavity wall panels and samples taken from the wall systems of projects where the cavity walls were repaired using the foam injection method.

    Evaluations were made as to the practicality of the repair method and long-term durability of the urethane foam. One building approximately 21 years old, six buildings 5 to 9 years old, and two buildings 1 to 2 years old were monitored to see if the foam material injected into the cavity could have a long-term effect on dimensional stability.

    The increased structural capacity of similar cavity wall systems when filled with foam to form a composite structure was substantial. The increase in bond and the bonding of each veneer unit to the substrate was also a benefit of this repair method.

    This repair method offers a relatively inexpensive method of remedial repair of cavity wall systems, and can have wider applications particularly in areas prone to earthquake.


    bond, corrosion, deflection, delamination, masonry veneer, polyurethane, urethane foam, water penetration, remedial repair, wall cavity, leaf

    Author Information:

    Kenney, RJ
    President and Architect, R. J. Kenney Associates, Inc., Plainville, MA

    Piper, RS
    President and Architect, R. J. Kenney Associates, Inc., Plainville, MA

    Committee/Subcommittee: C15.02

    DOI: 10.1520/STP19629S