What is the causes of Damage/Deterioration in Concrete?

Distress means that damage Concrete may be damaged by a number of various factors during its design period Because of the diversity of...

What are the causes of Damage in Concrete?

Distress means that damage

Concrete may be damaged by a number of various factors during its design period

Because of the diversity of construction materials, method availability, utility, environmental conditions, location, etc., therefore, the quality of concrete may be in crisis either during the time period of construction work or during service conditions.

Causes of Damage or distress or deterioration of concrete

  1. Structural causes
    • Externally applied loads
    • Environmental loads 
    • Accidents
    • Subsidences etc
  2. Errors in design consideration
  3. Poor construction practices
  4. Construction overload
  5. Drying shrinkage
  6. Thermal Stress
  7. Chemical reaction
  8. Weathering effect
  9. Corrosion

In addition to the distress in hardened concrete, the plastic concrete may also suffer damage due to the following reason 
  1. Plastic Shrinkage 
  2. Settlement cracking 
  3. Early removal of framework 
  4. Improper design framework
I try to make I short explanation by the table 

Damage / Distress




Cracks in the horizontal surface as concrete stiffens

Plastic shrinkage: rapid drying of concrete airfare

Shelter during placing. 

Cover as early as possible. 

Use air-entrainment

Seal by brushing in cement or low viscosity polymer


Cracks in thick sections as concrete cools

When contraction due to fall in temperature is prevented

Minimize restraint to contraction

Delay cooling until the concrete has gained strength

Seal crack

Cracks above ties, reinforcements etc in deep lifts

Plastic settlement concrete continues to settle after starting to stiffen

Change mix design.   Use air-entrainment

Re-compact the upper layer of concrete while still plastic. 

Seal cracks after the concrete have handed

Voids in concrete


Inadequate compaction, grout loss

Reduce maximum size of aggregate. 

Improve compaction, prevent leakage of grout


Cut out and make good. 

Inject resin

Rust stains

Pyrites in aggregate

Ain streaking from unprotected steel.

Rubbish in formwork.

Ends of finding wires and ties

Avoid contaminated aggregate.

Protect exposed steel.

Clean forms thoroughly.

Turn ends of ties inward

Clean with dilute acid or sodium citrate/sodium dithionite.

Apply surface coating

blowholes in form faces of concrete

Air or water trapped against formwork, inadequate compaction.

Mix designs not suitable

Change mix design, improve vibration, use absorbent formwork

Fill holes with polymer-modified fine mortar

lack of minimum cover to reinforcements

Reinforcements not properly fixed or moved during placing of concrete. Inadequate tolerances in detailing

More accurate steel fixing.

Greater tolerances in detailing

Apply polymer modified cement and sand rendering.

Apply protective coating

Erosion of vertical faces

Scouring: Water moving upwards against form face

Reduce water content, make the mix of concrete more cohesive

Rub in polymer modified fine mortar

plucked surface

Insufficient release agent, careless removal of formwork

More care in applications of

release against, and removal of formwork

Rub in fine mortar

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