Cracks on concrete structures/surfaces are a form of mechanical damage. Cracking is perhaps the most common type of damage to expect with these structures and/or surfaces.
If you've been fortunate enough not to have had crack-related problems on your concrete surfaces, here are a few things you may not know about mechanical damage to concrete.
Internal Concrete Cracks Can Be Located Without Excessive Demolition
Concrete cracks will often develop internally (e.g. the basement floor/walls) where they're hidden from your naked eye. Thus, it may be difficult to picture how such cracks can be identified without demolishing the structure. This is possible thanks to infrared imaging.
This innovation involves the use of infrared video cameras that have the ability to provide digital images depicting the infrared radiation given off by a concrete structure. The infrared cameras give a "thermal image" of the internal structure of concrete, thereby making it easy for a contractor to pinpoint the exact location of an internal crack. This eliminates the need to demolish non-affected portions of the structure when looking to establish the location of cracks.
Moisture/Water Infiltration Is Not Always Responsible For Concrete Cracks
There's a widely held misconception that cracks on concrete surfaces always indicate a moisture problem. This misconception probably stems from the fact that concrete cracks are common in basement areas and these areas are often exposed to moisture/water.
The emergence of cracks often has nothing to do with moisture/water infiltration. For example, cracks may appear in the basement when the foundation of the house shifts from its original position. Cracks on your driveway may appear if you park your vehicle at the same spot every day because the parked vehicle exerts pressure on the same spot every other day. Cracks may even result from the vibrations caused by heavy trucks that are constantly driven through a road that's next to your house.
Infiltration of water/moisture into concrete can never be ruled out as a possible trigger for mechanical damage. However, don't be quick to call in the water damage restoration contractor when the first crack appears on the basement floor.
You Might Not Need A Professional For Concrete Crack Repair
Cracks on concrete that aren't too wide or too deep can easily be filled with a concrete sealer available from local supplies stores. DIY-sealing of concrete cracks involves squeezing the sealer into the crack(s) using a sealant gun and letting it cure.
However, you shouldn't attempt DIY concrete crack repairs for severe cracks which may highly compromise the structural integrity of the concrete structure.Share
5 July 2016
Welcome! My name is Frances, and this is my first blog. Whether you found me through a Google search or were passed my link by a friend, I am so glad you found my blog. I plan to fill it with a range of commentary on the world of contracting and construction work, and I hope that you find my ideas compelling and creative. I am a dog trainer, but I have always loved the world of construction. I tend to work a lot on the weekends and evenings, when my clients are off work. As a result, I have a lot of time to write during the day, and I decided to create this blog. Thank you for reading.