Common Problems with Concrete

Concrete is obviously recognized as one of the most ideal materials that’s used in construction, it’s not always the most invulnerable. It can, at times, have its own set of problems and imperfections. One of these include improper placement due to the exterior elements along with cracking and heaving due to a lot of reasons and factors. The interior of the concrete structure can also be compromised by moisture as it goes into the concrete, or how it loses its structural identity from corrosion and rust from the metals that act as the reinforcement.

Improper Placement

Ideal conditions must be considered once you pour your concrete. The placement must be performed to ensure a quality pour. If you try to pour concrete during extremely hot day can cause the concrete to set up too fast, which affects both the structural integrity and its finish. For best results, avoid pouring concrete during very hot days.

On the contrary, pouring concrete when it’s really cold can also cause issues when it comes to the structural identity of the finished product. The concrete’s ability to chemically react properly once it makes contact with water determines its strength and durability. The ideal environment for you to pour concrete is when it’s 10°C and rising to ensure that the cement and water will react properly. This allows the proper curing for the concrete.

Cracking or Heaving

concretecracks
Concrete Cracks

There are many causes of concrete cracks. These include shrinkage, changes in temperature, lack of support, and rusting of the metallic components. The mixture of concrete, aggregate and water will naturally grow bigger during the pouring when it is mixed with air, after it is dried and cured. As the water evaporates from the concrete’s interior, a significant amount of shrinkage will occur and cracks may appear if the proper control joints are not installed. It can also appear in undesirable places instead of within the joint. You wouldn’t want to have these cracks destroy how your floor looks like!

Changes in temperature can also cause the concrete to bond in the cold and then expand during the summer season. Major expansions that happen during these seasons can cause the concrete slab to chuck from the ground.

Lack of support for the concrete slab can also cause overwhelming problems. The position of the concrete may shift if the support is not placed properly or lack thereof. It can often be the result of erosion from rains and winds. Moreover, the lack of rebar or reduced support in the structure can cause a disastrous failure.

Rusting and Spalling

Concrete Spalling

Another issue for concrete surfaces. Whenever there is metal corrosion in the reinforcements including the rebar, wire mesh or steel beams, it can greatly decrease the concrete’s tensile strength. But not to worry because there are solutions that could stop the corrosion process once you notice or discover it.

Spalling, however, is a serious issue there the concrete surface becomes flaked and very rough. It’s a condition that usually happens on the tiny cracks that were only visible on the concrete surface the first time. Spalling is a common manifestation that happens when a high level of water adds to the concrete mixture or when the concrete surface was dried faster than its interior.

These concrete problems can all be addressed through concrete repair and replacement or by adding sealants to the surface, whenever applicable.

Leave a Reply