11 Jun The cure for Concrete Cancer?
Concrete is very strong and durable; however, like most things in life, preparation and maintenance is paramount.
Its ultimate performance is influenced by the selection of ingredients and how they are mixed / placed.
Other factors include such things as compaction, curing conditions, design and detailing, and the environment.
How well it performs and how quickly it degrades are therefore dependent on its quality, exposure, conditions and, as you are about to discover, its ongoing maintenance.
What causes Concrete Cancer?Concrete Cancer is commonly caused by the presence of carbonation (moisture) and/or chlorides (salt) around the reinforcing steel of a slab.
This moisture together with the build up of salt causes corrosion of the steel, weakening the concrete to the point where it spalls (breaks apart).
Due to potential cracking of the slab and the porous nature of concrete, it is important that any chance of water ingress is addressed as early as possible , preferably in Phase A and certainly no later than Phase B (see “The Law of Fives“).
The way to prevent all the symptoms of concrete cancer – blisters, cracking, crazing, curling, delamination, discolouration, dusting, efflorescence, low spots, popouts, scaling, or spalling – is by planning ahead.
Foresight in itself may not prevent concrete cancer, but it’ll point you in the right direction to address it before it becomes a bigger problem.
It is also crucial to undertake an integrated waterproofing solution such as coating concrete slabs with a waterproof membrane or protective coating and ensure that box gutters and drainage systems on roofs are in good condition.
This will prevent water from dumping onto slabs wreaking havoc. Remember, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. For more details, please call R&BS on 1800 550 037.