The soft backer rod is commonly used in applications that are to be administered vertically. Generally, it is used in fixing problems above the grounds and in some irregularly shaped joints. It is widely used to fill spaces in construction. The soft backer rod can be compressed up to 90 percent when the sizes are smaller and up to 50 percent when sizes are larger. In the process of manufacture, the soft backer rod can be made into different variation of colors.
When sealing some fissures, the backer rod is used along with some leveling sealants. The following are some of the steps when applying the backer rod.
- You must clean the joint. It should be free from all sorts of loose materials, impurities or contaminates. You can clean it using water and detergent and ensure that there is no water in the groove before proceeding to the next step.
- When installing the backer rod, compress it against the joint using a roller or some blunt tool.
- The rod should be pressed gently up to the depth that is being recommended by the manufacturer of the sealant which is usually about .5 inch of the joint width. In order to control the depth of the placement of the rod, you may use a roller gauge.
- Avoid tearing and puncturing the backer rod while you are installing it.
- It is important to bear in mind that backer rod sides and joints must be sealed. You can use masking tape when sealing up sidewalk edges.
- When the surface material needs priming, the primer should only be applied on the sides of the surfaces. This should be allowed to dry before the backer rod is installed. Please note that the backer rod should not be primed. Most of the primers could stain so be very meticulous when applying them.
- The sealant manufacturer has instructions or suggestions on how to apply their product, follow what the manufacturer tells you.
- When the need arises, shape the sealant using a spoon or a caulking tool. When you are using polyurethanes, you must ensure that the tool is moist so that the surface will be smooth. Do not mix water with soap since the soap can interfere in the bonding process.
- Over coating or second coatings usually are applied after a minimum of 24 hours for most products. Be sure that you carefully read instructions and follow the recommendations of the sealant manufacturer. If this is your first time making the application or if you are not a professional applicator, make sure that you place masking tapes on the surfaces where sealants should not go. Bear in mind that sealants are very tricky to remove and having sealants on unwanted areas will pose a big problem for you.