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Some Interesting Facts About Concrete Demolition

A demolition job often involves concrete since it is a very common building material. Concrete demolition may be part of a larger job or a single job if some concrete simply needs to be removed and replaced. If you want to know more about Concrete Demolition in Minneapolis, read on to learn a little about the process.

Why does concrete need to be removed?

One common reason for replacing concrete is settling or sinking into the ground. Settling can cause deep cracks that spread widely throughout the concrete, and it can also cause a slab of concrete to sink. Settling may result from a combination of loose dirt used in the sub-grade and rainwater that has seeped under the concrete and softened the ground. A heavy weight, like a utility truck, could also cause concrete to sink and crack.

Another problem is frost heave. This happens when moisture in the ground freezes and pushes the concrete upward, the opposite of sinking. Also, if the surface of the concrete is so damaged by pitting and spalling that it would be very costly to resurface it, the concrete may need to be torn up and replaced.

Concrete may need to be removed even if it is in good condition if it is in the way of a construction project, such as a concrete wall that needs to be removed in order to add a room. Similarly, street curbing may be removed in order to widen the street.

What are the methods and tools used to demolish concrete?

One method of demolition is pressure bursting. Mechanical bursting is performed by drilling a hole in the concrete and inserting a hydraulic splitter that causes the concrete to crack and fragment. Chemical bursting is a similar process, except that a chemical slurry is injected into the hole, where it disperses and expands, bursting the concrete. Both of these methods are relatively quiet.

Another method is breaking down the concrete with hydraulic or pneumatic breakers. These are heavy duty machines that pound the concrete with hammers, 300 to 800 times a minute, delivering a lot of force. For very large jobs, a ball and crane or explosives may be used.

Once the concrete is broken up, the concrete elements are cut up with a saw, water jet or thermic lance, and then they are carried away.