Concrete is an extremely durable material that is widely used in both building and structure foundations. However, like any other material in the world, it too has vulnerabilities under certain circumstances. This typically is related to one of the following:
- Unprofessional site preparation
- Improper concrete mix
- Poor finish
- Exposure to weather elements
- Changes to the ground beneath the concrete slab
When one or a combination of these factors occur, one of 7 common types of concrete cracks occur:
- Plastic shrinkage
The Dangers of Concrete Cracks
Not all concrete cracks are the same. Some are purely aesthetic and do not pose any danger to the structural integrity of your building’s foundation. Others can pose a several threat as they expand and stress the structure. As such, the correct diagnosis of the type of crack at work is critical before any concrete repair can be carried out.
In the event that the type of concrete crack does threaten the structural integrity of the building, then you could engage a professional concrete repair company to carry out repairs.
The most thorough solution involves the replacement of the entire section of compromised concrete. This method gives the best long-lasting results as the structure becomes as good as new. However, it is both costly and time-consuming to perform. If the current structure does not contain a large network of cracks, then a more convenient and easier to perform operation can be done.
For smaller cracks, crack injection can used to stabilize the structure in the short to medium run. This process involves injecting grout or resin into the concrete slab’s void in order to fill the cavities. Crack injection also serves a dual purpose of aiding in protecting against both water penetration and corrosion.
Types of Crack Injection
Different materials are used for crack injection in response to the type of crack at work. Once a crack occurs, the structure will undergo some level of movement. Understanding this movement is key to selecting the right injection material.
Generally speaking, epoxies are stiff and are unable to absorb much movement before it un-bonding occurs. Hence, they are preferred when a structure does not experience much movement but requires more support.
On the other hand, polyurethane epoxies feature greater flexibility, making them suitable for structures undergoing movement. Nonetheless, it is not to say that polyurethane epoxies are a fix all solution. No injection grout can tolerate excess movement in a structure.
Hiring Professional Concrete Repair Services ASAP
If you should spot cracks in your building’s foundation, then it is imperative that you immediately get in touch with a professional concrete repair company. No matter the size of the surface crack, your structure could be harboring much more serious cracks internally. Only with professional expertise will the condition of your structure be determined accurately.