It is common for concrete to crack and there are many different causes. The cause and the structural significance of the crack will determine the best way to repair the cracks. If the crack is caused by construction errors, it will raise concerns regarding the structure’s ability to carry loads. The safety of the structure is another significant factor. It pays to be aware of the fact that a crack is the first sign of trouble, but if you’re lucky, it may be the full extend of the damage, thus posing no significant threats.
Cracking could be caused by thermal contraction or expansion, drying shrinkage or other intrinsic volume changes. Either way, you should consider the cause and the significance of the cracking before you select a repair option. However, if the cracks are caused by construction issues, you will have to enlist the services of an expert who can do a comprehensive structural analysis. While structurally-induced cracks are significant, there are certain strengthening techniques that can help repair it.
Before selecting a repair option, you should first establish whether:
● the crack is dormant or active
● crack sealing or integrity repair is required
● the repair is cosmetic
Crack Repair Objectives
There are many good reasons to repair cracks, including:
➔ improving the appearance of your concrete walls.
➔ restoring the structural integrity of the vertical concrete surface.
➔ sealing out deicing chemicals and water.
➔ stopping water leaks.
Repairing Cracks in Vertical Concrete Surfaces
In most cases, cracks in concrete surfaces are repaired by using a patch product to fill the crack. However, this doesn’t work on a vertical surface, due to gravity’s pull. Instead, experts advise that you use a product that starts as a paste or liquid and then dries. Epoxy is one such product will not shift during repair.
Here’s how to use an epoxy repair kit to fill cracks in your concrete surfaces.
Tools & Materials
Epoxy repair kit (epoxy, adhesive, and injection ports)
Step 1: Remove loose particles from the damaged area by washing it and let it dry thoroughly before proceeding. If the crack is too small for the injection ports, use a router to widen it slightly.
Step 2: Cut along the tab attachments on the injection ports to remove the caps. Start by pushing one port into the end of the damaged area, and then insert the remaining ports half an inch apart between the two anchors.
Step 3: Apply a thin layer of epoxy inside and around the damaged area using a small paintbrush. Work the adhesive in closely to the edges of the ports, taking care not to cover them, and cover the entire area of the damage, including a small area of undamaged concrete surrounding the damage with concrete.
Step 4: The adhesive should become sticky after approximately three minutes, at which point you can fill the injection ports with prepared epoxy by inserting the tip of the tube into the lowest port and squeezing until the epoxy goes into the next tube. Keep going all the way up.
Step 5: Once each injection port is full of epoxy, cap it and wait 48 hours for it to dry before prying it free using pliers. You can now sand the dry bits of stray epoxy using the fine-grit sandpaper.
Need help? Get in touch with Anta Plumbing. We have plenty experience in repairing cracks in vertical wall surfaces.