The Twistfix Blog
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Anyone who is involved in the renovation and construction industries knows that preparation is absolutely key to achieving professional, lasting results. Part of this preparation is analysis and Twistfix supply a diverse collection of analytical tools to facilitate all kinds of applications.
Three of the most popular analytical tools are:
- The Rigid Boroscope: with superior level of image quality, this optical instrument permits fast, simple and reliable viewing in areas that are inaccessible by other mean. It is ideal for inspectiion of wall cavities and floor voids. A bright halogen lamp ensures enhanced visibility and the unit comes complete with battery and charger to improve cost-effectiveness
- The Wall Tie Testing Kit: designed to facilitate quality control and pre-contract product suitability for wall tie installations, this is one of our best-selling products. Comprising a tension tester with 3.5kN capacity gauge, an adapter key and integral bridging unit, this tool utilises a load-cell and mechanical pulling device to accurately assess tension forces
- The Protimeter Mini: the best-selling product of its kind in the UK, the Protimeter Mini is a digital moisture meter that quickly and reliably measures moisture levels in timber. Information is displayed on an LED, colour-coded readout which can compare relative moisture equivalents for masonry
All of these products and more can be found in the 'Measuring & Testing' section of our website. Browse now!
Our last article featured our helical structural repair ties, which are used to secure brick façades to perpendicular walls, helping to restore structural integrity. These crucial components go hand-in-hand with lateral restraint ties, which are used horizontally to tie façades to a buildings flooring diaphragm; together they provide a comprehensive structural solution to stabilise bowing walls.
Tying bulging brickwork to the internal structure of a floor is made quick, simple and effective with lateral restraint ties from Twistfix. Each robust, high-quality tie features a drill-like leading end, designed to powerfully cut into softwood using a standard drill. The bars are simply wound into the timber before being resin-fixes to the gable brickwork, delivering an immediate, lasting solution.
One of the most impressive features of lateral restraint bars is that they are fixed from outside of the property, meaning that a minimum of disruption occurs during installation. Determining the position of the relevant joists and ensuring services such as gas, water and electricity are avoided simply involves lifting a small number of floorboards before installation proceeds.
Lateral restraint tie bars are supplied in packs of five and there is a choice of different lengths available to suit any application. An even more economical option is the comprehensive Lateral Restraint Wall Tie Kit, which contains everything required to complete a professional job. The kit includes:
- Five lateral restraint tie bars, each of one metre in length
- An SDS setting tool to allow easy winding of restraint ties into joists
- An SDS masonry drill bit
- A pack of polyester resin with integral mixer nozzle
- A co-axial resin applicator
For more details about these products, check out our website or call our technical team.
By necessity, the walls of a property are generally slender in relation to their height. This means that, without restraint, walls are susceptible to buckling forces, a fact which must be taken into consideration when building or renovating. Support must be provided and this is achieved by securing floor diaphragms to external walls and strapping partition walls to perpendicular façade walls.
When such restraint is missing, inadequate or defective, walls can start to bow, bulge and/or lean. This telltale symptom of lacking lateral restraint should never be ignored and needs swift intervention to prevent the damage worsening and even becoming dangerous. It is most often older structures that display the common issue of bulging brickwork.
When the façade of a building has become disjointed from its main structure, the insertion of a series of load sharing structural restraint ties is the easiest and most effective way to remedy the situation. Installation is simple, each retrofit tie rod delivering the required reconnection and enhancing the resistance to buckling and thrusting forces to restore structural integrity.
As all structures are different, there are many types of lateral restraint system. When used for strengthening and reconnecting masonry wall junctions, we recommend our Extra-Long Structural Repair Ties, which allow you to quickly transfer lateral forces back to the buttressing walls. Made from marine-grade stainless steel, these crucial components are guaranteed to resist strongly against corrosion, meaning they will provide active, maintenance-free service for many years to come.
Our structural repair ties are sold in cost-effective and convenient packs of 10 ties. Check the product page for more information and to place your order.
All too soon, summer has given way to autumn and the rain has already made its unwelcome appearance! Heavy rainfall is often cited as a cause of basement leaks but the fact is that it usually just reveals an existing problem. Twistfix supply a wide range of professional basement tanking solutions, including cavity drain membranes.
All underground spaces must be properly protected against the ingress of moisture, which can cause all sorts of structural issues as well as posing a danger to health. When a basement is to be used as a working or living space, the need to protect the area from water is more important than ever.
Basement conversion is a popular method of increasing space. Other options, such as upgrading to a bigger property or extending into outdoor areas, can be costly and impractical; converting a basement is a simple and cost-effective alternative.
Cavity drain membrane is a necessary aspect of basement conversion. The system creates an air-gap between the wall/floor and the membrane itself, allowing water to pass behind it into a drainage channel and pump-housing sump. Water never comes into contact with the interior of the basement, ensuring the conversion is protected.
Installation is simple and involved fixing the membrane in place before overlaying it with battens or other framing system. Plasterboard can then be successfully applied to provide an area ready for finishing and decoration. Along with the membrane, Twistfix can supply all of the necessary ancillaries including waterproof plugs and plug seals, allowing for the most professional installation.
For a limited time, you can make big savings on one of our most popular basement tanking products: the Baseline Mesh Membrane Kit. Find out more details on the product page...
Damp can become an issue in all types of properties and for many different reasons. One of the most common causes is condensation and Twitsfix offer a range of solutions to the problem, including ThermalDry Anti-Condensation Coating.
ThermalDry Anti-Condensation Coating is a purpose-developed product which comprises a water-based acrylic emulsion paint. The formula incorporates myriad small glass beads, each of which is completely hollow; these beads allow the paint to act like a Thermos flask, using a reflective process to block thermal energy.
When thermal energy is reflected in this way, the masonry walls are protected from damp-causing condensation. Surfaces that are generally at a low temperature, such as walls, are more prone to condensation; ThermalDry fixes the issue by lowering the dew point by increasing this temperature.
Two coats of ThermalDry must be applied to create the most effective barrier. The first coat is applied in a horizontal fashion then, after up to four hours of drying time, the second coat is applied perpendicular to the first. Before applying the formula, it should be gently stirred by hand to disperse the glass beads evenly.
As well as protecting against condensation, ThermalDry also delivers an effective barrier against mould formation. It can be applied to internal or external walls, directly onto brick or concrete and over existing plaster and paint.
Recent gale-force winds have been causing havoc all over the UK, damaging structures and necessitating many different types of repair. Twistfix supply a comprehensive collection of structural materials designed to combat the problems caused by strong winds and now is the time to make sure you're prepared.
We are proud to supply Ancon PPS Slip Ties, which are specifically designed to be used at movement joints. Once installed, slip ties effectively protect masonry from the forces created by lateral wind loads while still allowing panels and walls to contract and expand naturally as necessary.
Each tie comprises a stainless steel body which has a plain and a perforated end. They come complete with a debonding sleeve which fits over the plain end, allowing for the expansion and contraction of brickwork.
Used in conjunction with conventional cavity wall ties at either side, the slip tie system provides effective and lasting protection. Sold in economical packs of 20 ties, this product is extremely cost-effective.
This comprehensive kit comprises 6m of ventilated ridge roll and a stainless steel fixing pack of superior quality. Suitable for use on all types of clay and concrete ridge tiles, the system features unique ratchet unions and high-strength nylon clips to ensure durability, enabling results that last as long as the roofing structure itself.
The Twistfix Dry Ridge System negates the need for repeated bedding and pointing, delivering a complete mechanical fixing solution. It can be installed in any weather with no special tools required, providing a water- and wind-resistant finish with its mortar-free and vapour-permeable construction.
Bonding is made permanent with a self-adhesive super-strength butyl strip and the product is lightweight, easy to work with and safe.
These are just two of the products we have available that are ideal for use during the winter months. Find out more details on the product pages and get in touch with our experienced technical team for further information and advice.
Since Twistfix introduced the Damp Check Mesh Membrane Kit to our portfolio of products, it has been a key element of the professional waterproofer's kit. Its consistent popularity rating comes from a combination of excellent quality, 100% reliability and always-competitive Twistfix price.
Following the installation of a remedial damp proof course, the internal finishes of a room are susceptible to damage from any water vapour and accompanying salts given off as walls dry out. The Damp Check Mesh Membrane Kit contains materials to create an immediately effective moisture barrier that will protect against this problem.
Mesh membrane is absolutely ideal to accompany the process of creating showers and wet rooms. It features a mesh face designed to easily accept a wide selection of adhesives, plasterboard dabs and cement renders. On the reverse side, the membrane has stand-off studs which, separated by protective air gaps, allow natural 'breathing' of the wall while still preventing water ingress.
Achieving professional results is easy with the Damp Check Mesh Membrane Kit. As well as 10m of mesh membrane, each kit contains 10m of butyl rubber tape and 100 hammer-in fixing plugs, allowing you to create the perfect waterproof seal. The material can be cut to size easily by simply using a standard knife or pair of scissors: no other special tools are required.
Discover more about the Damp Check Mesh Membrane Kit on our website!
The warm weather encourages us all to get outside but it is not only people who enjoy it: woodworm beetles are starting to emerge as well! Cases of woodworm are once again on the increase and professional builders should be ready to deal with upcoming contracts by stocking up on woodworm treatment from Twistfix.
If you are a home or business owner, you can use our Find-A-Contractor service to make sure that your property is treated using Twistfix products. The term 'woodworm' covers a variety of wood-boring insects; the most widespread is the common furniture beetle. As well as furniture, these creepy-crawlies will also readily infest floorboard, rafters and skirting boards. Here's how to spot the issue:
- Holes in timber.
The larvae of wood-boring insects burrow deep into the timber, remaining there for many months. They survive by eating the timber as they burrow through it, before pupating and emerging as adult beetles during the warmer months. The beetle exits the timber to breed, leaving a small yet easily-visible hole.
This is the second sign to look for if you notice holes in timber. As a beetle eats its way out of the timber, it will bring with it a small amount of frass, a fine powder like sawdust. This can be found near to exit holes and is a telltale sign of an active infestation.
- Damaged timber.
The burrowing of larvae through timber weakens the material and can cause it to become brittle and flaky.
Though occasionally spotted alive from May to October, it is just as common to find dead beetles in the area of infestation.
Twistfix supply a collection of woodworm treatment options. Each option is based on a micro-emulsion insecticide which comes in concentrated form. The product is registered for use by professional builders only and can only be supplied to addresses on the UK mainland. For the ultimate in cost-effectiveness, we recommend our comprehensive kit.
Find out more about our woodworm treatment options on the website.
The summer weather has got the whole of the UK in a good mood but spare a thought for your brickwork. Though it can't complain about the heat, it will nevertheless show its displeasure if not properly cared for!
Hot sunshine causes thermal expansion pressure to build up within the bricks, causing cracks to appear. These fractures, if left untreated, will steadily deteriorate, possibly resulting in a loss of structural integrity and the ingress of moisture. Filling cracks in brickwork is vital task that reduces the risk of dampness and instability. The task is made easy with Crack Injection Mortar from Twistfix; each kit contains 250g of pre-coloured injection mortar and a syringe with extension tube. Check out our step-by-step guide below.
- Prepare the area by making sure that there is no dust, dirt or other debris in the cracks to be filled. The product works best when bricks are pre-wet but not soaked.
- Mix the specified ratio of water and powder together
- Fill the cracks using the product; this operation is facilitated with the supplied syringe and nozzle.
- Once dry, the product leaves bricks ready to be sanded, shaped and modelled; this can be done up to 12 hours after application
- Clean tools and spillages using fresh water
Crack Injection Mortar is available from Twistfix in a range of different colours in order to match any style of brickwork. Only natural pigments are used and the product displays excellent adhesive characteristics.
Foam fillers are used in abundance across the construction industry, offering a quick and efficient solution. An ever-growing number of foam-filling specifications require fire-resistant properties to be included and Twistfix now supply fire-rated foam to meet these requirements.
To be properly effective, fire retardant foam must be of the correct specification and type, as well as being installed with precision by a qualified professional. The tough demands of current Building Regulations must be met, ensuring that the foam-filling application will provide a high level of protection in the case of fire.
Twistfix offer cost-effective access to industry-standard fire-rated foams, namely B1 Handheld and B2 Gun Grade foam. Both of these products adhere strictly to the specifications laid out in IN 4102 Part 1 for Construction Materials and BS476 Part 20. When used as a component within a fire-resisting joint, the foams are intended to be combined with fire-rated intumescent sealant; this will ensure that the maximum fire rating is achieved.
One of our most popular products is the B2 Gun Kit, which delivers the very best value for money and contains everything required for professional, reliable results. The kit includes an applicator gun and cleaning kit along with Everbuild B2 Firefoam; this superior formula comes loaded with special features, including:
The ability to expand to 50 times the original volume
A fire-rating of up to 2 hours in specific joint configurations (combined with intumescent sealant where applicable)
Curing time of just one hour, after which the foam can be sawn, plastered over or cut as required
High level of fire rating protection, offering considerable retardation of flames and smoke compared to standard grades such as B3
Added insulation and acoustic properties
For all the tech specs, check out the individual product pages and, if you need advice on making the right selection, then contact the expert technical team at Twistfix.