The service life of concrete: extend the life of the

Theoretically, the service life of concrete, filled with all the rules, can be from 50 to 100 years (and in some cases more). In practice, we often encounter accelerated destruction of such structures, although the potential of the material allows not only to avoid this, but also significantly extend the period during which the walls, supports and floors will retain their strength.

Violation of technology and increased loads can quickly lead to the deplorable state of even the most durable material

What determines the service life

To understand how to maximize the "life expectancy" of the cement mortar, it is important to understand all the factors that affect this indicator.

The main ones will be the following:

  • First of all, играет свою роль состав материала, а именно – цемент и наполнитель. Если для дорожного полотна использовать цемент М150, то не стоит ожидать, что оно простоит хотя бы год без ремонта. Так что лучше применять растворы, прочность которых соответствует нагрузкам. Цена, конечно, будет больше, но и чинить придется реже.
Masonry of expanded clay (in the photo) is durable
  • The filler is also very important. For example, the lifespan of claydite-concrete blocks, according to manufacturers' assurances, is about 75 years, while a house built of wood concrete (filler is chips) may require major repairs in 40-50 years.
  • Next - fill method. Each error (violation of proportions, insufficient compaction, drying too fast or too slow) results in a less reliable construction.
  • Operating conditions also have a direct impact on durability. The most destructive for concrete is waterlogging, the effect of saline solutions, and low temperatures. Well, if during the season several dozen cycles of freezing and thawing take place, then the first signs of damage appear within two to three years after construction.
Foundation failure due to moisture and stress

Note! To avoid this, masonry must be protected from external factors. Thus, the life of a gas concrete house with a non-ventilated facade is about 50 years, while a ventilated facade will, after 100 years, ensure the removal of liquid from wall pores with minimal negative consequences.

Of course, the above list takes into account only key factors. No vibration, wind erosion, or other nuances are mentioned here. However, this is enough to form a strategy to extend the life of the concrete.

The service life of aerated concrete blocks when arranging a ventilated facade is almost doubled due to the normalization of humidity

Extend the life of the design

Features of the technique

If we need the erected construction to stand as long as possible, the installation instructions should be strictly followed:

The better we fill, the longer the construction will last
  • First, we select the composition in accordance with the planned loads.. This applies to both the class of concrete and the thickness of the reinforcement. It turns out to make a margin of strength - it will only be better!
  • Secondly, тщательно готовим основание. The more dense the soil on which we install the structure, the less will be the intensity of the deformation effects. Thus, we will significantly reduce the risk of large cracks.
  • Thirdly, при заливке уплотняем материал, чтобы снизить содержание в нем пузырьков воздуха. The higher the density of concrete, the lower its porosity. And this, accordingly, will lead to an increase in moisture resistance.

Note! The long service life of aerated concrete, on the contrary, due to the presence of a large number of cavities. A significant amount of internal air allows you to compensate for thermal deformations, and the masonry does not collapse even when the water that has entered the pores freezes.

  • Finally, the structure needs to be dried effectively.. If the water evaporates very quickly, the cement will not have time to react, and the structure will lose solidity. For water retention we cover drying concrete structures with polyethylene.
  • In winter, the problem is of a different nature: in the cold the concrete just does not freeze. To avoid this, the solution must be heated with electrical cables, and the formwork must be insulated to keep warm.

Additional measures

The process of iron coating after pouring

When building a structure with our own hands, we can additionally increase its strength, which means - to extend the term of effective service.

Various methods are used for this:

  • First of all, the composition of the material can be led modifiers, significantly increase its stability. The most popular additives for concrete, containing fiber - thin steel or polymer fibers. Fiber acts as a kind of reinforcement, securing the concrete monolith from the inside.
  • Secondly, the surfaces can be subjected to the so-called fermentation, which is the treatment of the coating with dry cement or a flowing cement mortar. Material granules strengthen the surface layer of concrete, which is most susceptible to stress and climatic influences.
Principle of impregnation
  • Thirdly, it is possible to treat masonry or monolith by silling - insulating impregnation. They are made on the basis of fast-hardening polymers, penetrate deep into the surface pores and isolate them. At the same time, the coating acquires waterproofing characteristics, which significantly affects its durability.

Note! Polymer impregnation violates the natural breathability, because this way rarely strengthen the walls of residential buildings. But for the floor, this technique fits perfectly.

Appearance treated floor

Well, it is worth mentioning one more recommendation. Any damage to concrete has a tendency to expand, therefore it is worth taking as a rule: they saw a defect - repaired it as soon as possible. So the problem will be localized and its consequences will remain minimal.

But if you leave unattended a small crack, then in half a year there will be a rather large gap in this place ...


The service life of reinforced concrete pillars, columns, floor and road surfaces, as well as masonry of building blocks is determined by the influence of a complex of factors. And if we cannot influence some of them, then at the expense of others it is quite possible to increase the durability of the structure as a whole.

The video in this article contains additional recommendations for improving performance, so we advise you to carefully study it before starting the design.

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