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New Specification Covers Protection Board Fortifications of Waterproofing Systems

Picture the outside walls of a building standing 30 feet (9 m) below ground during construction. Waterproofing is applied to the exterior walls but when dirt is replaced, rocks or metal pieces abrade the coating, causing a break in the waterproofing system. Protection board applied to the outside walls prevents this abrasion.

Now available, ASTM D 6506, Standard Specification for Asphalt-Based Protection Board for Below-Grade Waterproofing, describes Class A and B protection board requirements, test methods, materials and manufacture, and sampling for contractors specializing in waterproofing applications.

According to Charles Pratt, waterproofing and bituminous materials consultant with Pratt Materials and Technical Consulting Services, Valencia, Pa., the waterproofing of below-grade structures can be assured by application of a suitable reinforced bituminous membrane to the exterior concrete walls. “Protection board such as described in D 6506 is one of those suitable to be applied to the outer surface of the waterproofing membrane system to safeguard the waterproofing system from puncture or distortion during and after backfilling around the building,” he says.

“Protection boards meeting ASTM Standard D 6506 are used on vertical surface waterproofing systems that may be buried as much as 100 ft. (30 m) or more. They are also suitable for use in waterproofing systems applied to plaza decks and similar applications.”

D 6506 was developed by a task group of ASTM Subcommittee D08.22 on Waterproofing and Damproofing Systems, within Committee D08 on Roofing, Waterproofing and Bituminous Materials. “The standard was produced in response to requests from waterproofing systems applicators and manufacturers,” says Pratt, the chairman of Subcommittee D08.22 who developed the standard with task group members from the protection board manufacturing, waterproofing, and roofing bituminous materials industries.

“We’ve seen waterproofing membranes 60, 70, 80 years old or more, still holding water out,” he concludes. “We don’t know necessarily whether they had protection board on them. But we do know that if you don’t put protection board on, you usually have a good chance of having a leak in a large job because of the problem with the backfill.”

Technical questions may be directed to Charles Pratt, Pratt Materials and Technical Consulting Services, P.O. Box 352, Valencia, PA 16059 (724/898-2119). Committee D08 meets Dec. 3-6 in Orlando, Fla. For meeting or membership details, contact manager Pat Picariello, ASTM (610/832-9720). //

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