Open Access

Effect of High-Pressure Washing on Chloride Ingress in Concrete – Development of an Accelerated Test Method


Bridges constitute an important part of the infrastructure. For bridges to have the longest possible service life with minimum repairs, the maintenance is of great importance. One type of bridge maintenance that is rarely researched is the continuous preventive maintenance. The continuous preventive maintenance consists of removal of vegetation, cleaning of bridge joints and drainage systems as well as high-pressure washing of the structure. The effect of washing is discussed but not properly researched. A study on the effectiveness of high-pressure washing on concrete is therefore being conducted. An accelerated test method is being developed to mimic field testing. The method has been developed through tests on small concrete specimens subjected to fluctuating temperature, fluctuating moisture, and repeatable exposure to de-icing salt during several cycles. The specimens are of two recipes where one represents an old concrete bridge with rather high water-cement ratio (0.6) and the other one represents a new concrete bridge with a low water-cement ratio (0.4). The first two versions of the method are described. The second version shows promising results, but the method needs further development to incorporate additional factors.

Publication timeframe:
2 times per year
Journal Subjects:
Materials Sciences, Materials Processing