Concrete is a material used in many areas of the home, from the foundation to the driveway. While concrete is a durable material, issues can arise that can cause concern, such as spalling and cracking. These problems can be fixed but you must learn how to spot these signs of stress so you can take care of the issue early without causing further harm to the home.
Spalling can occur for many reasons, from human error during installation to carelessness. Often times, during construction, the cement pouring and the placement of steel reinforcement with the foundation is not done correctly. This can result in spalling in the future. Common signs of spalling concrete include rust stains on the surface, rough and flaky surface texture or pitting. You may also see loose chunks of concrete or cracks along the surface with some areas breaking off.
Natural deterioration can also cause concrete spalling and cracking. Concrete contains alkalis and when this reacts to carbon dioxide it will become corroded. The corrosion takes place along the steel bars used as reinforcement and can lead to expanding which then leads to cracks and bulges.
Inspection and Repairs
If you feel that your home is subject to spalling and cracking within your concrete structures, trust a qualified concrete company to inspect these areas. Many concrete issues are problems that must not be ignored. If the problem is not treated, you may find further corrosion takes place which can lead to more damage within the concrete of your home. Many times, the damage is also not visible and only an expert can determine the issue at hand.
Two Areas of Concern
When it comes to spalling, there are two categories of concern: cosmetic and structural. With cosmetic concrete, we are focused on driveways and paving with concrete. With structural, the focus moves towards flooring, beams, foundations, etc. When it comes to cosmetic areas, the concrete will need to be repaired for visual appeal. However, structural issues are a bigger concern.
When you have structural problems, the integrity of your home is at stake. The concrete will need to be repaired as quickly as possible to ensure the structure of your home remains sound. Without proper repair, you can have serious issues in the home from the flooring to the ceilings and foundation.
If you live in an older home, more care should be taken to inspect the concrete areas on a regular basis. Over time, shifting can occur as well as just regular erosion which can lead to concrete issues. No matter how old your home is, take the time to inspect the concrete areas on a yearly basis to see if any problems exist. If so, have an inspector come out to survey the damage or issue you are seeing. If you are unsure, always have an inspection completed so that you can know if you have a problem with the concrete or if everything is fine. You will have peace of mind and can rest easy knowing your concrete is sound.