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Questions & Answers about our Water Repellents

Q: Is AQUELLUX S (or SILAC or AQUELLUX S WB) a waterproof coating?
A: No. AQUELLUX S (SILAC and AQUELLUX S WB) are specialized silicone water repellents. Unlike a paint or similar product, they do not form a film on the surface to which they are applied, but instead line the pores and capillaries with a silicone material that interferes with the ability of water droplets to wet into the substrate. This allows the substrate to "breathe" and release trapped moisture within the substrate back to the atmosphere. The downside to silicone water repellents is that under certain conditions including continual rain, wind driven rain or when applied to very porous substrates, the water repellency effect may be overcome and the substrate becomes wet. Note that as soon as the water stops contacting the substrate, the water repellent will allow the moisture to escape back to the atmosphere.

Q: Can I use AQUELLUX S on very porous substrates?
A: Yes, but the suitability of AQUELLUX S on these substrates and the quantity required must be checked. Very porous substrates include concrete block (especially with pumice filler) and Oamaru Stone. Generally, treat the surface with AQUELLUX S at up to 1 square metre per litre. In some cases, the substrate may be too porous (the pores and capillaries are too wide) to successfully treat with AQUELLUX S and therefore the water repellency may be overcome. It is highly advisable to test the proposed substrate to be treated with AQUELLUX S to determine suitability. Also, for concrete blocks requiring sealing, refer to our CONCRETE BLOCK SEALER System.

Q: Will AQUELLUX S alter the appearance of the substrate?
A: Under most circumstances, there will be no visible change in the substrate due to the application of AQUELLUX S as there is no film to modify the appearance. However, in some cases, as the AQUELLUX S allows the substrate to dry out (whether relatively new or old), then the substrate can change in colour at different rates. This effect is due to the substrate and because the AQUELLUX S doesn't create a film, the substrate colour changes are apparent. In addition, any stains or colour differences apparent in the substrate will be apparent after the application of AQUELLUX S, so must be removed prior to treatment. Furthermore, substrates that are not uniform in porosity and/or are very dense may result in AQUELLUX S silicone appearing at the surface of the substrate and may result in a noticeable colour change. It is recommended that a small area of the surface to be treated is tested for any potential colour change and to determine the correct application rate.

When applying AQUELLUX S to any surface, the solvent carrier of AQUELLUX S may flush out impurities in the substrate (including dirt, dust - especially if Oamaru Stone is sanded, etc) or may react with fillers and additives incorporated into grout or plaster mixes. Ensure all surfaces are thoroughly cleaned before application and allowed to age for at least 28 days for fresh concrete and mortar. Test an area before proceeding with complete application.

Q: I've noticed that the treated surface doesn't show as much beading effect as before when wet. Is this normal?
A: Yes. A proper treatment of AQUELLUX S requires the correct quantity of product be applied to the substrate depending on porosity. As the AQUELLUX S is applied, it penetrates into the substrate. Over time, the effects of weathering reduce the surface effect of beading, however the water is not able to "wet" into the substrate because of the silicone lining the pores and capillaries. Therefore, assuming the substrate is not too porous and therefore unsuitable for treatment, the AQUELLUX S treatment will continue to do its work within the substrate. Additional coats of AQUELLUX S may be applied as and if required.

Q: What's the difference between AQUELLUX S and SILAC or AQUELLUX S WB?
A: SILAC is an acrylic modified form of AQUELLUX S. It is primarily designed for use on more porous substrates, particularly Oamaru Stone. When applied to Oamaru Stone, SILAC helps to bind together the stone's surface, thereby imparting extra strength and helping to increase the effectiveness of the water repellent treatment. However, there will be a change in the appearance of the substrate when using SILAC compared to AQUELLUX S. When AQUELLUX S is applied to Oamaru Stone, the pores and capillaries of the stone are still lined, however, there is no physical resistance to wearing. If the stone dusts when rubbed, then this slowly removes the AQUELLUX S treatment from the stone as the stone weathers. SILAC can be applied to concrete (including polished or honed concrete) where the surface may be too porous for successful treatment using AQUELLUX S.

AQUELLUX S WB is a water-borne version of AQUELLUX S and is primarily used for applications where the solvent-borne AQUELLUX S is not used. It's used as a primer for the Concrete Block Sealer System and Protecta-Coat.

Q: Can AQUELLUX S be applied to a horizontal surface.
A: Yes, however we do not recommend it as the results may not be as required. AQUELLUX S should be applied to a surface that is inclined or vertical to ensure that the water can run off. If water can pond on the surface, then it may eventually be able to overcome the water repellency effect of AQUELLUX S and penetrate into the substrate. In some circumstances, such as treating concrete pavers or external concrete where there is no habitable/storage space below (such as concrete paths or on-ground concrete decks) or on exposed aggregate surfaces (on ground) where a natural look is required, AQUELLUX S may be applied. Note that the water will pool on the surfaces and therefore they may be slippery when wet. It is important to test AQUELLUX S on the surface prior to proceeding with the treatment to determine coverage rate and any potential colour change. The effectiveness and length of time that water repellency will remain for AQUELLUX S when applied to horizontal surfaces is the sole responsiblity of the applicator/specifier/owner.

Q: Can AQUELLUX S be applied to the outside of a substrate that is back-filled? Can it be applied to the inside of a wall that is leaking?
A: No. AQUELLUX S is not a waterproof coating and is not designed to be under constant hydrostatic pressure. For an external wall that requires a below-grade waterproof coating, please use a suitable waterproof rubberised bitumen coating . AQUELLUX S is not suitable for application to an interior wall that has water or moisture passing from the outside to the inside because the water/moisture will pass through the AQUELLUX S. Apply the AQUELLUX S to the outside of the wall. Water must contact the AQUELLUX S treatment from the front face to which it is applied.