Concrete walls are a symbol of fortitude and they are known to stand the test of time. However, nature takes its course and harsh weather conditions such as rain, storms, and extreme temperatures may cause cracks in concrete walls. Cracks can also occur due to structural damage and one must fix it as soon as possible to prevent any further damage. Visit www.resin-expert.com for a one-stop solution to fix cracks in concrete walls.
Concrete is prepared from a combination of cement, gravel, sand, and water. The ingredients cure into a hard, monolithic slab as the water in the slurry evaporates. The curing process causes the concrete to slightly shrink which in turn may result in hairline cracks.
Tips to Fix Cracks in Concrete Walls
1. Check Walls
One must check the walls to ensure dryness before starting any kind of fixing process. Dry the cracks with a blow-dryer in a heat setting if the cracks are found to be damp. Wait for about 15 minutes to check if the wall is still dry then start the repair process. If you find that the wall turns damp again, it is a sign that water is still seeping into the cracks. In such a case, wait for the wall to dry out on its own.
There are simple and effective tools and materials to repair a concrete wall. Skilled masonry can complete the task within a single weekend. However, severe cracks are an indication of structural damage or significant settling and may take much longer to repair. In such a case, call a qualified building professional to have your home inspected.
2. Epoxy-Injection System
An epoxy injection can be used to fix cracks as long as 8 feet. Walls that experience seepage during heavy rainfall can be permanently patched with epoxy injection. One needs to purchase a Liquid Concrete Repair Kit for performing the process.
The repair kit consists of two 10 ounce tubes of liquid concrete, a two-part epoxy crack sealer, a viscous epoxy that is stored in a caulk-type cartridge, and a few plastic injection ports that inject the LCR (Liquid concrete repair) deep into the crack. Each kit contains material enough to permanently seal a crack that is 1/16-inch wide, 8-inch deep x 8-feet long.
Steps for the Curing Process
Step 1: Scrub
One will find many loose pieces of concrete paint and old filler material within the cracks. So, the cracks need to be scrubbed clean using a wire brush. You can begin the filing process after vacuuming the crack free of dust and debris.
Step 2: Mark Injection Points
One needs to tap 3-in. (10d) finishing nails halfway into the crack. It needs to be spaced approximately 12-in. apart. The process is done to align injection ports with the crack.
Step 3: Mix the Epoxy Sealer
Open the two containers that contain the two-part epoxy crack sealer and scoop out equal amounts from container A and container B. Make sure you use two separate sticks to apply the sealants. Doing so will avoid contamination. Blend the two parts over a scrap board with a fresh putty knife until a uniform gray color is attained.
Step 4: Spread Sealer Over Injection Port
One needs to carefully pour a little bit of sealer over the base of the plastic injection port. Make sure you do not plug the porthole with the sealer. Now, place the injection port over one of the nails sticking out of the crack and press it on the wall. Similarly, install each injection port.
Step 5: Blend and Apply a Larger Amount of Epoxy Sealer
Prepare a larger blend of the two-part epoxy sealer and apply it over the entire length of the crack with the help of a 1.5 to 2-inch wide putty knife. Next, spread the epoxy sealer 1/8 in. thick and 1 in. on both sides of the crack. Also, make sure to pour the sealer over the flange of each injection port. And only leave out the neck portion. Dip a paintbrush in mineral spirits and use it to smoothen out the sealer.
If the other side of the wall is visible through the crack, fill it up with the epoxy sealer. Allow the sealer to cure for approximately 6 to 10 hours before injecting the epoxy. After that, mix the LCR epoxy with a plunger rod and place the cartridge into a caulk gun. Start dispensing the epoxy into the crack from the lowest port. Keep filling ports until the epoxy oozes out. Finally, remove the gun and plug the port.
Next, insert the cartridge tip into the port that is oozing and inject epoxy. Keep repeating the process for all other ports and plug each one before moving onto the next
As a final step, cut off the necks of the ports with a hacksaw and patch them up with a little bit of sealer. It should be done only after the LCR has been cured for 5 days.