Water Beading Up on My Porch
LESLIE: Now we’re going to go to Lester in New Jersey who has an unwanted pool on the porch.
What’s happening, Lester?
LESTER: I notice the water beads up on the porch and I’m afraid that when the colder weather comes, if it starts off with rain and then freezes overnight, there’s going to be a little ice on …
LESLIE: So it’s forming pools but they’re not sort of going away; it just sort of builds up and sits there.
TOM: Well, it sounds to me like the oil finish is doing its job.
LESLIE: It’s doing its job but maybe the porch needs to be on some sort of a gradient so that it actually has somewhere to go to; even if it’s only slightly.
TOM: Yeah, well the problem is that trying to do something like that now is almost impossible after the porch has been set. Well, you’re not ponding water, right? It’s not ponded, it’s just beading. Is that what you’re saying?
LESTER: That’s right. It’s just beading.
TOM: Well, I think that the porch is correctly built because if it was ponded then that would be more of an issue. You’re just going to have to be careful. You know, the downside of having a nice finish on there is it’s going to be a little more slippery in the wintertime. You’re just going to have to be more careful about making sure you keep some salt handy on that.
Now by the way, when you get that salt this particular winter, you don’t want to use rock salt; you don’t want to use sodium chloride. You want to use calcium chloride.
LESLIE: Why, what’s the difference?
TOM: The difference is that the sodium chloride or the rock salt is very corrosive to concrete, so it’ll eat away at his beautiful, brand new, concrete porch.
LESTER: The only thing I was thinking of – I don’t know if it’s practical – is take a couple of handfuls of sand and sprinkle it around on the porch there. I don’t know what it’s going to do to the finish.
TOM: Well, the sand is not a bad idea. I’ll tell you what I generally do. I keep a mix of calcium chloride and sand in a little garbage can on my porch in the winter and, this way, you can just spread a little down when you need it. But you’re just going to have to be careful of the traction. But you know, hey the good news is, Lester, that that porch sounds like it’s properly finished and it shouldn’t be – it should last you quite a long time.
LESTER: [Longer than the other one] (ph). I sure hope it can last for longer [the other new one] (ph).
TOM: Alright Lester, thanks so much for calling us at 1-888-MONEY-PIT.