||In general, interface transmissivity is obtained based on measurements of the steady-state flow in composite geomembranes (GMBs) – geosynthetic clay liners (GCLs). However, transient flow rate has not been studied prior to this study. It has been already noticed that its consideration can lead to an important increase in predicted effluent volumes penetrating the liner, the subgrade soil and the ground water. The goal of the study presented herein is to study the transient state by quantifing the reduction in flow rate with time for two different composite liners. In these composite liners, a needle-punched GCL was combined to a high-density polyethylene GMB. The first GCL contained granular sodium bentonite and the second GCL contained powdered sodium bentonite. While the GCLs hydrated their water content and deformation were quantified. To this aim, various tests were conducted over various periods of time, corresponding to different flow rate values through the composite liner. Relationships between the flow rate and water uptake of the GCL on one side and swell on the other side are given for both GCLs. The results show that the mass per unit area in addition to the granulometric distribution of bentonite in GCL specimens may affect the hydration process and the flow rate evolution through composite liners. In addition, For both GCLs, the deformation follows the same trend of evolution with water content. (C) 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.