concrete cancer

Effective Building & Consultancy has over 20 years of experience repairing Sydney homes and buildings from spalling concrete or concrete cancer. An onsite inspection is carried by our experts, providing a full quote detailing the best methods to treat and permanently repair concrete cancer. 

Cosmetic concrete repair makes the surface look beautiful again and prevents the issue from becoming worse and costlier.

Understanding Concrete Cancer

Concrete cancer is caused when the steel reinforcing within a concrete slab begins to rust. As the steel rusts, it expands, displacing the concrete around it, causing it to crack and become brittle, thus accelerating the process.

Signs of concrete cancer include:

  •         Cracking concrete
  •         Rust stains which seem to leak out from within the concrete
  •         Bubbling of concrete render
  •         Leaks that appear in overhead concrete surfaces

The Dangers of Concrete Cancer

Concrete cancer – especially on the outside of a building – is terrible and potentially hazardous. With increased exposure to the elements, untreated pieces of concrete may fall from the structure over time. The risk is damaging property or hit the person walking below.

Causes of Concrete Cancer

The concrete is reinforced with steel, mesh, or iron bars. If there are leaks exposed to air and water, carbonic acid forms corrode the mesh or steel.

Since concrete is porous, it easily absorbs the elements like Sydney’s sea air. Once the carbonic acid is formed, the concrete will easily absorb into the concrete, making it rust. Corrosion causes the concrete to crack, which exposes the steel further and speeds up the corrosion.

Without repair, concrete cancer can cause structural integrity, making it too big of a repair problem and cost much more in need of complete replacement. Some common causes of concrete cancer are saltwater chlorides, poor waterproofing, building defects, concrete left without maintenance for a long period.

Checking concrete cancer requires experts, and EBC has the expertise and training in identifying concrete cancer and repairing it. It is essential to call us as soon as you suspect concrete cancer, as the earlier it is fixed, the better. The longer it is left, the costlier it is to repair.

Effective Building & Consultancy Concrete Cancer Repair

Concrete cancer repair can be expected in harbour side city with beachside suburbs. The sea air can cause problems if the concrete or render is not protected or appropriately maintained.  As an operated business with over 20 years of experience, we understand Sydney’s climate. 

6 Methods of Concrete Cancer Repairs

1. Anti-Carbonation Protective Coating

Anti-carbonation protective coatings are used as surface treatments that have a high resistance to carbon dioxide. They shield the concrete from carbonation by acting as a barrier to prevent from having concrete cancer.

2. Polymer Modified Repair Solution

Polymer-modified cement mortar has been widely used as a repair mortar due to its high strength, good durability, and good bonding properties to old concrete constructions. 

This has been studied and found out the polymer-modified mortar’s mechanical properties used for repairing concrete issues. The results showed that polymer could greatly improve the mortar repair performance. Additionally, the polymer was reported to improve the repair mortar’s durability, which was an important aspect of the construction.

3. Filling in Cracks and Replacing Small Sections

Routing and sealing of cracks can be used in conditions requiring remedial repair and unnecessary structural repair. This method involves enlarging the crack along its exposed face and filling and sealing it with a suitable joint sealant.

This is a common technique for crack treatment and simpler than procedures requiring epoxy injection. This method is mostly applicable to flat horizontal surfaces such as floor and pavements but can also be accomplished on vertical surfaces with a non-sag sealant and curved surfaces such as pipes and poles.

4. Protective Coatings

The application of a paint coating is a cost-effective way of preventing corrosion. Paint coatings act as a barrier to prevent the transfer of electrochemical charge from the corrosive solution to the metal underneath.

Another possibility is applying a powder coating. In this process, a dry powder is applied to the clean metal surface. The metal is then heated, which fuses the powder into a smooth, unbroken film. Several different powder compositions can be used, including acrylic, polyester, epoxy, nylon, and urethane.

5. Concrete Painting

Another option is painting the concrete. Many paints on the market are specifically designed to resist chloride. If you’re near the ocean, this may be your best option as it will lower the risk of the saltwater causing corrosion. 

6. Waterproofing

Waterproofing is perhaps the best way to prevent concrete cancer, so invest in good quality waterproofing membranes to minimise water leakage chances. Keeping an eye on your structures is also wise so that you can spot standing water issues immediately and have them fixed before they become problematic.

Call Effective Building & Consultancy Today!

Contact us to schedule an onsite inspection and provide a full quote outlining the best methods required to treat and permanently repair concrete cancer.

Trust that Effective Building & Consultancy has dealt with concrete cancer many times, and we have the knowledge to fix it.

For more information about our building inspection services, visit our Help Centre.

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