by: michael eli dokosi/blakkpepper.com/ghana
To save money to acquire land for residential or commercial purposes only to later realize in the rainy season that the acquired land is in a swampy area can be a disconcerting experience and to raise a structure only to have seepage through the concrete roofs, foundations and other areas can be disjointing.
To remedy such pitfalls, Vivian Obuobi, Head of Operations at Skidcom Company Limited, sole distributors of XYPEX products in Ghana has explained that despite other products existing on the market, the verdict from clients is that XYPEX Concrete Waterproofing by Crystallization has solved all of their leakage and seepage problems.
By means of diffusion, the reactive chemicals in Xypex products use water as a migrating medium to enter and travel down the capillaries of concrete. This process precipitates a chemical reaction between Xypex, moisture and the by-products of cement hydration, forming a new non-soluble crystalline structure. This integral structure fills the capillary tracts rendering the concrete waterproof.
According to Madam Obuobi, the seed to start Skidcom was planted by her boss and General Manager Mr. Amankwa Opam when contact was made with a construction agent who exclusively imported and utilized Xypex products on his construction sites in the 90’s and early 2000. When the opportunity however availed itself in 2005, Skidcom bid and emerged the new sole agent for the Xypex products in Ghana and from then there has been no turning back.
She stated Xypex products are for waterproofing, protection and repair adding out of a wide range of products in the Xypex stables, four products are currently imported by Skidcom due to weather and other considerations although a few additions are to be introduced in the coming months.
The four products currently available are the Admix, Concentrate, Modified and Patch’n Plug.
ADMIX: Xypex Admix is used to batch with concrete before casting to make the concrete water tight.
The structural integrity of holding tanks in water treatment plants depends entirely on the protection of steel reinforcement from corrosion. Inadequate waterproofing, cracking, joint-failure, and chemical attack are problems that will result in the deterioration of concrete. The consequences are costly rehabilitation and significantly reduced service life.
With over 40 years of experience in 70 countries around the world, Xypex has extensive experience in the waterproofing and protection of municipal infrastructure, and is recognized as a key player in the water treatment industry. Xypex can be used to waterproof and protect underground water tanks.
CONCENTRATE: Xypex can be used to waterproof a tower tank 27 m above the ground. Defective concrete has to be chipped out and repaired with Xypex Patch ‘n Plug followed by the application of a coating with Xypex Concentrate and Modified over the repaired concrete. Then a 2:1 cement mortar rendering is done.
MODIFIED: A two-coat application of Xypex Concentrate and Modified can be used to waterproof roof decks and ground-water reservoirs. Xypex Dry-Pac can then be applied to the construction joints and Xypex Concentrate used to waterproof all bathrooms.
PATCH’N PLUG: Xypex Patch’n Plug and Concentrate are used to seal off several purpose-built pressure release holes in below-grade swimming pools of structures.
The wife and mother of one noted that although some clients prefer Skidcom staff to apply the Xypex coatings to their structures, independent artisans can use the products once they’ve been given tutorials. She however stressed that that proper gear must be worn before application. Folks must wear nose masks, acid resistant gloves to the arm level and must refrain from direct inhalation.
“In the beginning there were challenges, skepticism was high so we had to give a lot of freebies and undertake practical demonstrations however soon the product endeared itself to all. Today we are the sole distributor, importing from the UK franchise such that anyone seeking to import Xypex into Ghana is directed to us by our partners in Canada and the United Kingdom” Madam Obuobi noted.
Touching on the clientele base of Skidcom Company Limited, the plump, ebony lady intimated that Xypex has been used to repair seepage in the filtration and sedimentation tanks, Clarifiers and Filters of the Ghana Water Company leading the crew to work on their installations at Kpeve, Winneba, Tamale and other parts.
Other beneficiaries include the Holiday Inn suspended pool, AGAMS Group buildings, the Osu Shoprite, WBHO – Accra Mall extension, Kumasi Central Mall, Achimota Retail Centre, Elizabeth Building, Mobus Properties, VRA (T3 Project), Kasapreko Research Centre on the Spintex road, Blackwell Reality, Berock Ventures Ltd, Ghana Cargo Centre with EnergoProjekt, Underground Tanks at One Airport Square with Micheletti (Ghana) Ltd and many others.
Xypex Patch ‘n Plug repairs on cracks and tie holes on STP TANK at New Abrim Mines.
Xypex Concentrate & Modified slurry application on Floor Concrete Slab and Roof at Newly Constructed SSNIT Regional Office – Tamale.
Xypex Patch ‘n Plug for tie holes in retaining Walls and Concentrate in addition to Modified on Walls/Slab and Column Bases at Kasapreko Laboratory Centre, Spintex Accra.
GWCL Clarifier at Weija Headworks (Xypex application on walls and floor).
GWCL Sedimentation Tanks at Winneba Headworks (Xypex application on walls and floor).
Being a product of choice for architects, engineers, contractors and concrete producers, Skidcom has partnered with Energo Projekt, Consar, Micheletti, Berock Ventures Ltd and Cell construction.
Commanding a staff of 8 technical heads and 15 auxiliary hands, Madam Obuobi mentioned that under the direction of Managing Director Charles Amankwa Opam, Skidcom intends to open permanent outlets in all the 10 regions although works have been executed all over the country.
Asked what set Skidcom Company Limited apart from competitors, she opined: “We have a solid, unbeatable product in Xypex but we’ve priced the product so more Ghanaians can benefit. We also offer warranty even up to 10 years when we undertake the application because we believe in our product.
“We also deliver products to clients within Accra at no charge, beyond Accra at a minimal charge.” She stated.
The good news is that Xypex is non-hazardous and non-toxic as it has met international test requirements NSF, DWI and WRC. For corrosion to take place there must be liquid phase water as it is this liquid that Xypex consumes to form crystals and thus protect structures. It is this unique attribute of Xypex that sets it apart from other barrier systems such as epoxy, polyurethane, bitumen or other acrylic products.
Skidcom, sole distributors of Xypex Concrete Waterproofing by Crystallization products can be located at 574 Jones Nelson link, Adabraka, near the former Globe Cinema. Skidcom can be reached on 0208110328/0243426171/0302681581 or by email firstname.lastname@example.org for enquiries and placement of orders.