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Concrete repair is an inevitable part of the life cycle for old buildings. This is especially true of buildings in South Florida. Concrete failure is mainly due to salt in the air. High concentrations of chlorides (salts) are found in coastal areas. These salts penetrate concrete through tiny holes. As rust begins to form and overtake the rebar, concrete cracks and begins to rupture. This is known as a “spall”. Spalling can be considered a failure and could lead to a complete collapse. These matters are taken seriously by the South Florida Cities and Counties.
Rebar rusts when moisture penetrates the concrete. This rust expands the rebar’s original thickness up to seven times and exerts more than 10,000 psi of pressure. This huge amount of pressure is what causes large cracks and the previously mentioned spalling. A qualified structural engineer can determine if there are any problems that might otherwise appear to be minor.
The process of structural concrete repair and restoration involves returning the structure to its original condition and specifications. Structural damage can often be found on elevated slabs, catwalks, decks, or parking areas.
Commercial property owners and condominium associations should hire a structural engineer to inspect the building once every two years. There are signs of concrete decay that can be detected by simple inspections by managers and maintenance staff. Boards of directors can be alerted early to potential risks by the manager. Some easy-to-spot signs of distress to the building are:
If restoration work is required, now would also be the time to look into other related work like waterproofing, repainting the building, and other restoration projects. Taking on all needed work at the same time will save money in the long run.
The Dean Mitchell Group provides quality concrete repair, building restoration, construction, waterproofing, and painting services. We specialize in commercial, residential and homeowner and condominium associations, we take pride in our work and offer only the highest quality available.
We manage each and every project to ensure that all work is completed according to schedule and to specifications. This is our promise to you and to your project: high-quality materials and expert craftsmanship from our experienced and more than capable staff. They take pride in their work and go above and beyond to ensure that our customers are completely satisfied.
The first team member you need to choose is a skilled and experienced structural engineer. Interview multiple engineers from the area who have a track record of successful concrete repair projects.
A threshold inspector is required for buildings with 30 stories or more. This permits him to attach a letter from a special inspector to the permit application. The engineer can act as an inspector and send reports to the building department during the construction process. The building department must still be informed about inspections. A copy of the inspection letter is included in the permit package that is posted at the jobsite so that a building inspector can inspect it. All of this is handled by the engineer or contractor.
The contractor must conduct an existing condition survey before beginning any work on the building. This will document the current condition of the building, as well as the surrounding areas (such as landscaping), and removes any doubt about the existence of damaged areas that may have occurred during construction. This protects both the contractor and the association.
The structural engineer will mark the locations where the contractor must make repairs. The contractor’s warranty will not cover repairs if they are not made according to the International Concrete Repair Institute standards. These standards specify how concrete repair should be done and the extent of the work. As the areas are being repaired, the engineer inspects them again. Then new concrete is poured.
An outside testing company also tests the concrete after it has been repaired. This is to make sure that it has attained its desired strength before any additional work can be done. Unit owners might wonder why work on one area has halted while the contractor is working on another. This usually occurs during the curing/testing phase.
The engineer will determine the concrete’s strength per square inch (psi) during the curing and testing period. Usually, this is 5,000 psi. Concrete testing companies will be present at the concrete pour and will collect several samples in cone shapes back to their laboratory. The samples will be tested at seven-, fourteen-, and 21-day intervals. Reports on each test will be sent back to the engineer. Once the required strength is achieved, the forms used for concrete cannot be removed.
Concrete plays a major role in your building’s appearance, structure, and sustainability, both for residential and commercial purposes. Concrete that isn’t strong enough to support your building can be catastrophic. Commercial buildings are often more vulnerable than residential properties due to their sheer size and weight.
Concrete restoration simply refers to the process of repairing damaged concrete, restoring it to its original strength and appearance. This process can also be used for driveways and sidewalks. Concrete restoration and concrete repair are two different things. Concrete repair can fix structural problems, but it doesn’t consider aesthetics. Concrete restoration offers both aesthetic and structural benefits.
Concrete repair has the advantage of being less costly than new construction. Concrete restoration gives your building the look of brand-new concrete, even though it is less expensive. It improves the appearance of your building and repairs structural cracks. It’s cheaper for businesses to stay ahead of concrete repairs instead of a complete restoration project. This helps to prevent problems from growing out of control and putting customers and employees at
The Dean Mitchell Group is dedicated to providing quality concrete repair, construction, remediation, and emergency project management services to our customers. To reach our office, click here or give us a call at (561) 788-7347.