Ensuring Effective Construction: Common Concrete Material Issues

Building a new home is stressful, and it can come with the added stress of construction problems. Most construction errors are related to the use of concrete as it’s a major component of building any structure. Here are some common concrete issues that some builders often face. Being aware of the following can be effective in preventing further damage and issues:


Honeycombing refers to concrete voids that result from incomplete filling of spaces between coarse aggregate particles. It becomes more obvious when you strip the formwork and come across a rough concrete surface with several air voids. Honeycombs are caused by improper workability and vibration of concrete.

Bug holes

As the name suggests, bug holes refer to small noticeable holes on the concrete surface. A common cause of bug holes is a lot of sand in the mix, making it too lean. Therefore, they should be monitored carefully as they can cause issues when it comes to the durability of the concrete.

Disintegration and Scaling

Disintegration is when your concrete deteriorates into smaller fragments. Scaling is also a type of disintegration, only milder and results in the surface mortar flaking off.

If there is a huge area of rotten concrete or if the deterioration is over four inches deep, it can result in some serious damage as your structure can get unstable. Concrete builders should always be cautious of such issues and must take adequate measures to avoid them. Read more to learn about your nearest concrete builder, making sure to hire someone with the skills to prevent and correct such issues.


Typically, cracks are of two types, surface or structural. Surface cracks are less wide and deep as compared to structural cracks. Surface cracks often result from poor construction practices, freeze-thaw cycles and alkali-aggregate reactivity. This type of reactivity happens when the cement and aggregate mix does not go well, causing map cracks. On the other hand, structural cracks are caused by erosion, contributing to the loss of fill support.


It is a white substance that can be found on concrete surfaces. Efflorescence is a result of water seeping through cracks in your concrete. The reason it should be monitored constantly is that it can help you detect seepage and other problems such as concrete deterioration and inadequate drainage.

Monitoring and Inspection

Concrete materials are not very easy to work with, and if constant monitoring is not present, it may result in serious consequences. Make sure to have your concreter inspect your concrete structure at least once every year and also after a serious weather event. The inspector must check your concrete spillway conduit for its interior condition. They must also have a written record of honeycombing, pop-outs, erosion, disintegration, scaling and the width or length of cracks.

As opposed to surface cracks, structural cracks need more monitoring as they can be a threat to your structure’s stability. They can also take photographs to have records of any conditions they may have found during the inspection. If a certain condition is rapidly changing, it may be pointing towards a more serious problem.


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