Water for Construction

Water is an important element for life. It is required in almost every process and operation. In construction quality of water plays  an important role, either it is used in concrete or cement mortar or curing. Many times we have seen that in spite of using best material in cement, required results are not achieved. Most of us think that there is something wrong in cement, but we do not consider quality of water being used.

Using bad quality water in construction  may result to:

a) Loosening of  wall
b) Reduction in compressive strength 
c) Dampness persistently
d) Surface efflorescence
e) Corrosion in steel bars

As per IS:456-2000 standards there are listed some checks/tests which one should perform before using the water for construction purposes:

1) pH: The pH values of water shall generally be not less than 6 and not more than 8.

2) Acidity Limit: It should not require more than 5ml of 0.02 normal NaOH to neutralize 100ml sample of water, using phenolphthalein as an indicator.

3) Alkalinity limit: It should not require more than 25ml of 0.02 normal H2SO4 to neutralize 100ml sample of water, using mixed indicator.

4) Permissible limit for solids: The maximum permissible limits for solids are given below: 

Types of solids
Organic solids
200 mg/liter
Inorganic solids
3000 mg/liter
400 mg/liter
2000 mg/liter for concrete not containing embedded steel, and
500 mg/liter for reinforced concrete work
Suspended matter
2000 mg/liter

5) Water should not contain any organic material.

The water that do not conform IS:456-2000 standards is not recommended to be used in construction. Therefore it is recommended to test your water quality before building your dream house.


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