Remmers graffiti protection belongs to the class of semi-permanent anti-graffiti systems. Graffiti and paint smears can be removed from treated surfaces easily thanks to the use of a hot water high pressure water jet equipment (hygrothermal cleaning).
The word ‘graffiti’ originates from the Greek word ‘graphein’. In Italian-speaking countries it developed from the word sgraffiare (= scratch, scratched) Graffiti and/or Graffiti. Graffiti (singular = graffito) describes words and/or images painted on wall surfaces in public areas, usually without permission. Graffiti protection systems (also called anti-graffiti systems) not only serve to protect against graffiti, but also allow easy and compete removal of this ‘artwork’.
Graffiti is a criminal offence.
There are few product systems in the construction industry where customer demands and reality lie so far apart as for anti-graffiti systems, which is why it is essential to discuss the customers wishes and the performance capability of the available systems before taking any action.
Usually the customer wants the following with respect to an anti-graffiti product:
Depending on their stability when graffiti is removed, anti-graffiti systems are classified into:
This term covers all preventive systems that are removed at the same time when removing graffiti. That is why these are also reffered to as sacrificial layer systems. Products with different bases are available. The most common are:
In general, these systems have a high level of water vapour diffusion and do not create any or only slight changes of colour on the treated surfaces. The following questions need to be addressed when selecting this kind of product:
This term is used to summarise systems that are a combination of at least two protective materials. In general, these systems contain a non-reversible, water repelling and/or oil-repelling component and a reversible component. During cleaning, these, like the temporary systems, are also removed and then need to be replaced. A differentiation is made between single and multi-layer systems for first-time applications. In the case of one-coat paint systems, the combination of active ingredients is produced and applied as a single-component product. The protective substances separate after the application. One example are combinations of special waxes and organosilicon active ingredients. Whilst the wax components remain on the surface of the façade as a reversible part due to their viscosity and particle size, the organosilicon part penetrates the subsurface and generates an irreversible water-repellent layer. In the case of multi-layer systems, the components are applied individually one after another. The following properties need to be observed when opting for this kind of system:
Permanent anti-graffiti systems generally comprise of several layers that remain permanently on or in the substrate. This suggests that the function of the protection system is also maintained on surfaces that have been soiled several times with graffiti and cleaned again, and does not need to be renewed. However, it does make sense to renew the protection layer after a certain number of cleaning intervals that depends on the respective product. Both water repelling and/or oil-repelling impregnations and also coatings are used as permanent anti-graffiti systems.
There are various techniques and methods that can be used to remove graffiti depending on the respective anti-graffiti system and possibly the spray paint used.
Before anti-graffiti measures are taken, the complete effectiveness between substrate, protection system and the way in which it can be cleaned must be assessed. A number of aspects must be taken into account here:
It is always recommended using tested and certified products for preventive and cleaning purposes.
If non-certified products are used, ensure that the following is documented:
Setting up a test surface area is an excellent way to test the interaction of the anti-graffiti products and cleaning method and/or cleaning agents in combination with the surface properties. For a representative test it is necessary to not only apply the protective products and assess the optical effect, but also to apply graffiti to the protected surface and to remove it again using the selected method. This method is the only way to guarantee sustainable assessment of the suitability of a protection system. The sample surface should reflect the important substrate properties and be appropriate to the size of the building. If various substrate types need to be treated, they should be represented in the sample surface or by creating several sample surfaces. A directly adjacent untreated comparative surface is part of the sample surface. This allows optical changes to be assessed. To guarantee this, both the sample surface and also the comparative surface can be processed with similar preparatory steps, e.g. the same preliminary cleaning process.
Façades are treated with anti-graffiti systems to guarantee fast and easy cleaning after graffiti has been sprayed on. Cleaning is part of the system. The anti-graffiti system should of course have to be cleaned by the same company that has also carried out the test surface and the initial treatment.. Only then can the quality and effectiveness of the system and the soundness of the substrate be maintained.