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April 2, 2023
How safe is your concrete balcony?

Your concrete balcony is prone to delamination so the Structural Repair team what to ask… How safe is your concrete balcony?

What is delamination?

Concrete delamination is where the concrete spalls or blows and becomes structurally unsafe.

The structure loses its integrity. 

Concrete delamination is caused by moisture, air and water, penetrating the concrete over a period of time.

This then comes in touch with the reinforcements bars within the concrete, which then rust and corrode.

When the reinforcement bars rust, they expand by up to seven times.

Therefore, when they expand, the concrete blows or delaminates.

When this happens the strength of the structure is reduced. 

What concrete age is most affected?

Concrete from the 1960s, 1970s and & 1980s is particularly prone to this, and we undertake many structural repairs to balconies.

This apartment block in Southampton is on the coast, and the winds and sea air increase the speed of concrete delamination. 

The correct remedial solution was to hack off the loose spalled concrete and expose the reinforcement bars. 

Once they were deemed to be structurally adequate, they were cleaned and then primed with a rust inhibitor, before the concrete balconies were rebuilt with an epoxy concrete. 

After this had been done, the whole concrete balconies were coated with an anti-carbonation coating.

This prevents air and moisture entering the concrete structure.

Therefore reduces the risk of further concrete spalling. 

A waterproof coating is then applied to the top surface of the concrete balcony as a precautionary measure.

Also this is to stop water ingress.

Repairs to concrete balconies and concrete stairs are particularly common, and we undertake many of them. 

We can scan concrete balconies and stairs to see if the reinforcement bar is corroded within the concrete structure. 

The earlier concrete corrosion is detected, the more cost-effective the repair can be. 

The longer it is left, sometimes it gets beyond the point where repairs can be undertaken,and the balconies or stairs need to be completely demolished and rebuilt, which is a more expensive option, as well as having a larger environmental impact.

What should I do if I have these issues?

Contact us for a quote and for further details to discuss your concrete structure, your balconies and stairs, as this is our specialty. 

It is imperative that concrete balconies and stairs are inspected on a regular basis because often signs of concrete corrosion cannot be identified by a visual inspection. 

This is the advantage of concrete scanning, as we can see what is within the concrete structure.

We undertake concrete inspections for numerous maintenance companies. 

  • annual basis
  • six-monthly
  • or on a contract basis.

 Contact the Structural Repairs team to see how we do this.

We would welcome the opportunity to speak to you in regards to your concrete balconies and structures.

The team will be delighted to come along and do a demonstration as to how we can undertake annual maintenance inspections for you.

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