The term “Spalling” refers to chipping or flaking that happens with artificial surfaces like concrete.
Over time, the concrete can deteriorate, revealing the coarse aggregate beneath the smooth surface. When that happens… you’ve got concrete spalling issues. Identifying the problem is just the beginning. The deeper question is understanding why the spalling began, and what can be done to fix it. There could be chemical or physical processes at play, environmental conditions — even the way the concrete was originally mixed might have an impact on why it began spalling. Here are several common causes of concrete spalling:
Corrosion of the reinforcing steel or rebar beneath the surface of the concrete produces rust. That causes volume expansion, which puts pressure on the concrete. Over time, that additional pressure causes spalling.
Alkali-silica reactions happen when an alkaline cement paste reacts with the silica in the concrete aggregate. Like the rust from rebar corrosion, this reaction causes volume expansion, which can lead to spalling over time.
Water penetration is a major cause of concrete spalling. If water penetrates the concrete, it can freeze and thaw with the seasons. After a hard freeze, the frozen water in the concrete expands, causing spalling.
In addition to the above causes, Alpha Structural assessors have witnessed spalling due to low-quality concrete, badly-constructed joints, bond failure, and fire damage. The only way to be sure is to have our trained and experienced assessors visit your property and review the situation firsthand.
The biggest benefit you will find is the increased structural integrity of your entire home. This will give your peace of mind, particularly because this kind of repair is also meant to keep other issues from occurring, such as continuing cracks in your house.
After the repair, you can also go about having any other damage repaired, such as sagging ceilings, without worrying about the same issue recurring. In addition, there is an increased curb appeal on the outside of your home, which will help the resale value.
If you have minor spalling, the process is a bit easier, but if there is structural damage, we will need to design and engineer the appropriate repair before any repairs are made. In order to assess the damage, you will first need an inspection of the damage.
Once that’s done, our engineering-approved team designs a solution based on your specific situation. In most cases, that solution involves replacing the section of the concrete that is spalling. Alpha Structural also makes sure that the drainage around the site is improved to make sure that whatever caused the initial spalling is identified and corrected.
This really depends on how much damage there is to your foundation, from cosmetic to structural. For milder cases of spalling, repairs can take two to three days.
More extensive damage leads to more extensive repairs, so the size of the damaged area is usually the largest factor in determining the timeline of the job. Structural damage, however, will require an engineer to inspect and assess the damage before coming up with a plan for repair. This will add some time to the overall process, while the repairs can take a week or two to complete. Inclement weather can also affect the timeline, whether it’s raining, damp, or too cold for the concrete to properly set.
Once your repairs are complete, you can expect not only a much more secure foundation but one that is far more resistant to water damage than before. This can help save you money in the future if you live somewhere where there is heavy rain, drainage, or has other water-related issues that can affect your foundation.
Alpha Structural has been a leader in spalling concrete repair in L.A. and the surrounding areas for the past 25 years. With a combined technical experience of over 850 years, our in-house engineers, assessors, and field crews are among the most experienced in Los Angeles and all of Southern California. To find out more about Spalling Concrete Repair, call or email and set up an appointment for a consultation and inspection.
The price will vary depending on several factors. This includes the size of your house, the type of foundation you have, the extent of the damage, and how to level your home is. If you want to get a precise quote, make sure to schedule an inspection with Alpha Structural.
A foundation is more than just the bottom floor of your property. It is the base that supports everything you work so hard to protect. At Alpha Structural, Inc., we treat each project with that level of responsibility and respect. That’s why families and businesses across Los Angeles choose us to protect the structures that protect them. If you want your foundation built to the Alpha Standard, contact us today to schedule an inspection.