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Different Types Of Concrete Cracks

Concrete cracking is an obvious sign that something is wrong in the concrete structure. The defect pattern can indicate the cause of the crack which will allow you to know whether the crack is architectural or structural. The main types of concrete cracking are described below.

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Types of Cracks:

Disintegration

Concrete disintegration can be a result of freeze and thaw cycle on the surface. The moisture will enter the concrete where it will contract and expand. The expansion could cause microcracking and can lead to bigger cracks. Concrete disintegration often just occurs on the surface and may not penetrate deeper into the concrete. Most concrete disintegration damage will not affect the structure integrity but maintenance is still needed.

Crazing

Crazing is the formation of numerous cracks which look like webs. These mini cracks are formed on the surface of the concrete. Crazing is mostly caused by surface shrinkage which is due to changes in humidity. The cracks do not penetrate the surface in most cases.

Plastic Cracking

Plastic cracks happen before the concrete has hardened which is caused by the rapid loss of water during the settling of the concrete foundation. Poor mixture of the concrete may cause cracking. Of the mixture or pouring technique is all wrong, hairline cracks may appear in as little as few hours after the pour. Unlike crazing though, the hairline cracks may run deep through the entire slab. http://www.skerleccontracting.com/facts-you-should-know-about-asphalt/

This kind of crack mostly affects large structures and slabs. This happens because the water evaporates faster than it needs to. As you know, water should have a chemical reaction to the concrete to make it hard. If the water evaporates faster than it supposed to, proper reaction would not take place causing the formation of cracks.

Scaling

Scaling is caused by freeze and thaw cycles. Scaling is only a surface damage which means that it isn’t very damaging to the structure integrity of the concrete.

Delamination

Delamination happens when the surface is finished prematurely. When the concrete is curing, it is necessary for the water to bleed to the surface. If the slab was finished before any bleeding happens, the water will get trapped under the surface. Because of expansion and other outside factors, water would try to escape through the concrete slab which will leave cracks along its way. Although it sound bad, delamination typically does not pose structural threat.

Hardened Cracking

Hardened cracking is caused by drying shrinkage once the concrete has hardened. These cracks form because while the concrete is drying out, its volume is shrinking. Volume shrinking is caused by the loss of water through evaporation in the surface area. This cracking damage can mean sub-par quality choice or poor concrete pour.

Overloading Cracks

This type of crack is caused by loading stress. You can identify where the additional stress is coming from by checking the direction of cracks. These cracks often indicate deeper structural damage that needs fixing. If you suspect any kind of overloading structural damage to your concrete foundation, call on professionals and have them check the quality of the concrete foundation.

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