Selecting, Evaluating, and Specifying Bridge Deck Joint Sealing Systems

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Title: Selecting, Evaluating, and Specifying Bridge Deck Joint Sealing Systems

Author(s): Guy S. Puccio

Publication: Special Publication

Volume: 94

Issue:

Appears on pages(s): 167-184

Keywords: bridge decks; control joints; evaluation; joint sealers; performance; specifications; Construction

Date: 9/1/1986

Abstract:
The design engineer is charged with the responsibility of selecting and specifying the type of expansion joint that will give satisfactory performance at the most economical cost to the owner. However, during the past 15 to 20 years, sealed expansion joints have become increasingly more sophisticated both in the materials used in their manufacture and in their sometimes patented and unique design. An attempt has been made to resolve this situation by the development of performance specification criteria. While this approach has merit, it does not provide a practical guideline for the design engineer and has the tendency to increase the cost to the owner without the benefit of guaranteeing better life-cycle costs. It also tends to base one's selection of expansion joints from expensive laboratory results and not necessarily from field or engineering experience. Needed are guidelines for selecting, evaluating, and specifying expansion joint systems allowing the knowledgeable engineer to describe explicitly what he expects in terms of materials and performance. The paper discusses the subject from both the design engineer's perspective and the contractor's and supplier's view with recommendations for achieving viable and practical specifications for bridge deck joint sealing systems.