Cracks can appear even in newly poured concrete. When it happens, it often leaves customers with a lot of questions, especially regarding the job that they got. Although it is only natural for concrete to get cracks, several issues can arise because of it. To help you understand why it happens, here are a few reasons why concretes can crack.
Initially, concrete is in its liquid form when first placed. It should stay in liquid form until it forms into the shape that you want. You need to have the right amount of water and cement so that it will get the right level of hardness that you need. Any material that contains water tends to shrink over time. That is because it tends to dry out as the water evaporates. So typical parking lot paving in Kansas City will shrink at least a quarter for every 100 square feet.
Poorly installed concrete joints
Concrete joints help handle shrinkage crackling in concrete paving. Experts see to it that the spacing between the control joints is at the right distance. Having too much gap between the joints can make it harder to fill and maintain it. Also, constant exposure to high foot traffic can cause its edges to break easier, thus creating potential safety problems in the future.
Concrete does not need too much water to strengthen itself. However, there are those who put too much water into the mix, which causes it to reduce its strength. So you should know the right amount of water that you should put into the mix. Another way is to hire a reputable contractor so that you can guarantee that you are getting the right mixture. Although it is more expensive, you can ensure that you are getting the correct ratio for the project.
Finishing the concrete surface
An excellent way to keep the cracks in control is by properly finishing the concrete surface. You need to use the right finishing techniques so that you can achieve great results. Moreover, you should know the proper timing throughout the project. Experts also suggest flat troweling and flat floating to ensure a smooth and clean surface.
You need to be mindful when working with concrete. Overworking can cause the aggregate to settle, especially when working with vibrating screeds. Moreover, it can bleed water as well as cause excess fines to rise. Watch out for any bleed water on the surface, too. It is best not to finish if you see bleed water on top of its exterior. Finishing it while there is water back to concrete can lead to cracks later. You also need to let it dry completely to cure the concrete slab for several days.
Although cracks in concrete are normal, that does not mean that you will leave these cracks unattended. There is always a root cause behind these problems. You should take the time to figure it out so that you will know its extent. Finding the main issue behind the cracks will give you more time to fix it before it gets worse.