Concrete Cancer: How to Identify and Treat It

Concrete cancer is a destructive building maintenance problem that, if left untreated, can not only cost you more economically as a homeowner, but can also pose a significant safety and liability risk. It occurs when steel reinforcement inside a concrete slab begins to rust and expand, displacing the surrounding concrete and causing it to become brittle and crack. At Danrae Group, we understand the causes and remedies of concrete chipping and cancer, and we know that the best way to deal with them effectively is with full project management. Common signs of concrete cancer include cracking, crumbling, or flaking of concrete, rust spots or bubbles on concrete or cement plaster, and leaks in the ceiling and walls.

When a waterproofing membrane fails or there are gaps around the membrane, it can start the concrete degradation process. The most effective way to prevent concrete cancer is to identify and treat it in a timely manner. Aspro spacers can eliminate the threat of concrete cancer, while an anti-carbonation coating or other specialized coating can be applied to strengthen and preserve the concrete. Remedies may include site-specific electrochemical treatment for near-ocean properties, or simply removing damaged concrete, cleaning or removing affected steel, and replacing with new material.

Repairing and filling small cracks will help stop the spread of concrete cancer, but the key to a successful remedy is timely and professional identification and treatment. This can be improper preparation of reinforcing steel, incompatible support metals, metal bars placed too close to the surface, stress fractures due to excessive weight, insufficient concrete cover, or poorly poured concrete. You can be assured of quality workmanship and a specialized solution that covers structural remediation of concrete, steel or wood.

Sophia Harris
Sophia Harris

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