Concrete is a popular building material used across the world — more than any other human-made material. You most likely have concrete structures on your home, be it on the floors, sidewalks, or patios. Concrete cracks and voids are the bane of every homeowner. When you spot cracks, you should seek concrete crack repair services as soon as you can. Here are the common causes of cracks.
1. Excess Water in the Mix When Installing Concrete
Concrete is made from combining cement with sand or gravel, and water. It takes an experienced and expert contractor to strike the right balance of cement, sand, and water when making concrete. When excess water is used in the mix, it leaves cracks and voids on the slab when it eventually evaporates. Experts call it plastic shrinkage cracking. You may spot these cracks a few days after the job is complete.
Mostly, the cracks will start around the re-entrant corners, and where the concrete intersects with objects such as pipes, utility holes, and drains. When you spot these cracks, you should get a repair service before they spread. That’s why you should be very careful when picking a contractor for your concrete works. When concrete is installed correctly, you’ll not worry about crack repairs for the foreseeable future.
2. Thermal Changes
Temperature differences within the concrete or the surroundings can result in cracks. Generally, heat causes it to expand. When this happens, and it does not have enough room to expand, it pushes other structures like brick walls or house pillars that stand in its way. This causes stresses and cracks start emerging with time. Typically, contractors utilize expansion joints that relieve the stress created by the expansion.
Additionally, extreme temperature changes like excess heat in the summer or the chill cold in winter may also trigger cracks. Therefore, during summer, your concrete expands. Come fall, it contracts. With time, the stress impacted on it may exceed the in-place tensile strength. Before long, your concrete begins to crack. However, thermal cracking can be combated by preparing in advance and seeking crack repair services.
3. Overloading the Concrete Slab
You may over-estimate the maximum weight that your concrete can hold because we all know that it is massively strong. However, when you overload it, cracks are bound to appear. This is more common on commercial concrete floors than on residential concrete in your home. But after extended periods of heavy rains, the ground below the concrete may get soft if some of the water penetrates to the underground. Therefore, it will sink when heavy objects like your RV runs on it.
4. External Stress on the Concrete
When you are repairing the immediate area around or within your concrete, it’s possible to interfere with the structural integrity of the concrete and cause cracks. For instance, you may be doing plumbing repairs and have to access a pipe that overlaps with the concrete. During the repair process, you may interfere with the concrete and cause some cracks around the corners. If you don’t get the cracks repaired, they’ll soon spread to the rest of the concrete floor. When you have any repairs or renovations in your home that touch the concrete, it’s wise to seek concrete services to repair any damage that may have been imparted on your concrete.
You must engage a reputable contractor for your construction projects. Professional installation will not only yield floors that are appealing but also long-lasting works. Nonetheless, cracks may still invade the floor even then. This is not a reason to panic, as you can engage crack repair services to fix any cracks and voids. There are many methods of crack repair which include void filling, joint caulking, epoxy injection (exterior), or polyurethane injection (interior).
The mistake that most homeowners make is trying to DIY crack repair. Instead, you should trust an experienced contractor near you for professional crack repair services.