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It’s the one question everyone wants answered when it comes to concrete – how do we prevent cracking?
We often find our customers want the durability and visual appeal of decorative concrete, but they’re concerned about the risk of cracks in their concrete slab or driveway.
Like all construction projects, concrete relies on strong foundations. So site preparation is key to ensuring a smooth and long-lasting finish, avoiding cracks and the need for concrete resurfacing and repair.
We’ve developed this guide to help our customers and installers get the best possible results from Geostone.
There are several major reasons and sometimes unique combinations of factors that can contribute to cracks appearing in concrete. Our parent company Holcim Australia explains the cracking phenomenon is complex and can depend on the rate and amount of drying, drying shrinkage, tensile strength, tensile strain, creep, elasticity, degree of restraint, and other factors. Holcim has revealed survey results which found the three most common causes of concrete cracking are:
In addition to this, Holcim advises all cracks can be grouped into two categories. Either cracks that occur before and during hardening, or cracks that occur after hardening of concrete.
“While most types of cracking do not affect structural stability or durability, all cracks are unsightly and in extreme cases cracking can reduce the use and serviceability of the structure. For this reason, cracking should be kept to a minimum.” – Holcim.
Taking proactive steps to avoid cracks in your concrete can help prevent the need for repairs and resurfacing later on.
“Cracks in Concrete: The Cracking Phenomenon”, Holcim, 2017, http://www.holcim.com.au/products-and-services/tools-faqs-and-resources/do-it-yourself-diy/cracks-in-concrete.html
Sometimes the underlying causes of concrete cracks are unavoidable, such as extreme weather, or the movement and settlement of earth over time. But measures can be taken at the installation stage to better allow for these possibilities, helping to mitigate the risk of concrete cracking.
The Geostone Best Practice Placement Guide was developed to assist both our customers and concrete service providers with the placement of Geostone’s exposed aggregate concrete and decorative concrete range.
Some of the Guide’s key tips for avoiding cracks include:
When planning your Geostone concrete project, you should discuss these points with your concrete installer or service provider to help ensure your decorative concrete looks great for years to come.
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