1.1 Introduction

1.2 Inspection, Assessment, Maintenance, Repair

1.2.1 Assessment Present Condition 1.2.2 Life Assessment and Strengthening

1.3 Defects - General
1.3.1 . 1.3.2 1.3.3 1.3.4 1.3.5 1.4.1 1.4.2 1.4.3 1.4.4 1.4.5 1.4.6 1.4.7 1.4.8 Causes Monitoring of Structures Non-destructiveTests Causes of Deterioration Defects in M a t d ~ o n s t r u c t i o n -G e n e d Con~mon Types Plywood, Laminated Boards Moisture Content Seasoning - Limiting Moisture Content Use of Preservatives ~ommon ~resehatives Preservatives Developed Abroad Safe Use of Preservatives


1.4 Timber

1.6 Concrete

1.7 Sanitary Installation and Plumbing
1.8 Floors

1.9 Defects - Stone/Brick Construction 1.10 ~ k p n e s s ~ ~ e ~ g e
1.10.1 I>am@ess 1.10.2 Leakage 1.10.3 Treatment - Dampness/Leakage

1.11 Strengtheningof Cracked Beam 1.12 Summary

1.13 Answers to SAQs

The level of civilisation of any country is measured by the type and quality of structures and developmental works put up. ?he construction activity is mainly in the hands of Civil Engineers to build structures without flows. It should be your determination to ensure defect free construction. Any neglect by you as a civil engineer will lead to create an adverse impression about the profession itself. Management of Existing Stock The burrent economic approach has switched the minds of governments throughout the world from new projects requiring large capital investment to the management of existing stock of building and structures. In that sense the recession has come as a blessing to cstablish the importance of management tasks of inspection, assessment, maintenance and repair.
Construction Management

During the period of about 30 years or so after the second world war many structures were designed and built with little or no thought given to the long term requirements of their future durability. This induced research and development, rather the view has changed and construction management is now given the prominence it deserves. It has now been accepted that even in concept and design, durability of the structure should be kept in mind. Constructiot~ management is in effect the framework necessary to ensure a rational

L)efectq in Buildings

overall quality of any structure from conception to the end of its nominal life and beyond. Hopefully the magic instances of structures loit to the revaging effects of corrosion, erosion, d w g e due to overloading etc., will decrease if not disappear altogether. Not only will this result in the saving of vast amounts of expenditure on repairs but it will also save lives and demonstrate to the public at large that Construction Engineers are capable of carrying out their work in professional and responsible manner.

After studying this unit, you should be able to: identify defects in general in building construction. describe the defects of timber and steel. know the cause of defects in concrete, sanitary installation and plumbing, flooring,etc., and lalow the general repair nlethods of various defects in building construction.

?he present series of lessons deal with inspection assessment maintenance and repair. Evidently you eye as a civil Construction Engineer must be centered on avoidiilg defects in the entire cmstruction process starting from planning to the end of the life of the structure. Accordingly you will be studying about possible defects at all stages of the construction flogramme, the causes that give rise t o the defects and also appropriate ways for carrying out repairs.

1.2.1 Asswment Present Condition
Inspection and condition assessment are now well practiced sciences, but strength assessrnent baded on design philosophy and theory has shown in many cases to under-estimate the real strength of a structure and greater understanding is essential in thik area to ensure Ulat structures are not condemned unnecessarily. Assessment techniques applied in the field to determine actual working stresses also need development not only to test our theories but also to ensure that realistic estimates are made of the future useful life sound strengthening techniques need to be developed and of structures. ~ i a l l y implemented in an economical manner.

1.2.2 Life Assessment and Strengthening . The above is ody to instill in you a keen interest about the subject of life assessment of structures for determining strengthening measures if necessary. Only an outline is
indicated and it lis for you to enrich your knowledge by detailed study of the subject.

Coming to the subject proper concerning the series of lessons, defects arise at all stages of the construction~program i.e. planning, designing, detailing and execution and maintenance. The environment also plays its part to make defects.

1.3.1 Causes
Interactions between singular causes of deterioration in structures are numerous and could f importance are: greatly accelerate the deterioration. The singular causes o a) Selection of defective site, b) Impfoper area drainage, c) Inadqquate design, d) Insufficient reinforcement, e)


Substandard quality in cmsimction, Insufficient protection against rain water, Chlodide contamination,

h) i)

Sulphate attack, Thermal effects, and Lack of maintenance.

1.3.2 Monitoring of Structures
Monitoring of structures is gaining in importauce as the cost of maintenance and repairs increases dramatically due to deterioration due to overloads, air pollution, acid rain etc. In order to guarantee the durability of structures over a long period of time it is necessary to monitor the structures on a permanent basis. Cracks in structures, changes in the stress strain behaviour of structural elements are to be monitored using optical fiber scusors recently developed.

1.3.3 Non-destructive Tests
The procedures for v&ous Nondestructive tests have been well developed and require to be used for monitoring purpose. All the experts agree that without doubt maintenance cost of structures can be reduced significantly by a proper surveillance to detect defects/damages in an early stage.

1.3.4 Causes of Deterioration
Although building deterioration is dependent on the type of structure, how it was designed and detailed, how it was constructed, how it was maintained and its environment the common causes of deterioration are similar regardless of these factors which primarily influence the degree and extent of deterioration. Causes of deterioration can be classified on the basis of materials of construction.


1.3.5 Defects in Materials/Construction General
The study of the lessons in this course will enrich your knowledge about defects and their causes in the various building construction materials, defects that arise from wrong design specification and construction methods and also those caused by environmental effects through wind, water, heat and aggressive chemicals. Appropriate repair methods are explained in detail. Monitoring through NDT tests and sophisticated sensors is also pointed out for effective maintenance. You will be able to ensure excellence/quality throughout the expected life of structure and even beyond.





Wood is a popular construction material. Both hardwood and soft wood can be used for structural purposes. In practice most of todays carpenters use a mix of plywoods, sawed natural wood and even new wood substitutes. Plywoods are available in many thicknesses and types including water and pest proof ply. Along with ply you could use laminates like Formica, Melmica or wood veneer which has the finish of natural wood.

1.4.1 Common Types
The most commonly used natural woods in India are teak rosewood and cedar. Off theSe teak is most popular thanks to its strength, durability and grain and many kind of finishes possible with it. But when buying teak you should know that there are several grades of this wood- from very poor quality which will warp of crack over time, to the finest teak like Burma teak.

1.4.2 Plywood, Laminated Boards
Because they are layered and bonded plywoods can often be very strong and long lasting even tougher than natural wood. Among the new wood substitutes is medium density fibre board (MDF). For the home it can be used for doors, windows even for panelling floors ceilings. An exterior grade variety of MDF is designed to withstand humidity, you can even get MDF with lamination either on one side or both. And as brand names like Duratuff suggest, wood substitutes can have many plus points - durability, fire, termite, moisture and sound resistance.

1.4.3 Moisture Content
Moisture content affects the properties of timber. Many defecb are possible because of natural causes during the growth itself. Outbreaks of attack are nearly always due to excess

Defects in Buildings

moisture coming in coritact with the wood. Wet rot may occur while the tree is standing while an@or termites are also very u~jurious to timber. Teak, Sal and Deodar withstand the attack of white ants.

1.4.4 Sdasoning - Limiting Moisture Content
Appropriate seasoning is very important. Timber should be kept dry during construction. For example the erection of wooden door frames and window frames concurrently with the building of brick walls in wet weather is to negative all the benefits of seasoning. The construction should be such as to protect the timber from damp during the life of the building. All timber should be protected from ground moisture by providing damp proof courses. W e r e floor boards on ground floors are fixed to sleepers laid on concrete or wood blocks direct to it, a layer of asphalt or bituminous mastic should be provided in between. Timber should be clear of influence of damp earth or damp walls and free from contact with mortar. All under floor spaces should be well ventilated. Deterioration is caused dqe to fungi, attacks of termites, borers and marine organisms.

1.4.5 Use of Preservatives
Preservatives are used to protect timber against deterioration. Most efficient means of preserving timber are good seasoning and free circulation of air. Protection against moisture is afforded by oil paint provided that the timber is perfectly dry when first painted otherwise the filling up of the outer pores only confines the moisture and causes rot. For eltposed timber the remedy available is impregnation by substances poisonous to fungi, theise substances being either of the oil or chemical type.

1.4.6 Common Preservatives
Preservatives commonly in use are oil type preservatives like coal tar, coal tar creosote, chemical type organic solvents such as naptha, kerosene and white spirit. Water soluble preservatives like ASCU and Zinc chloride. Water borne salts types of which the most common ;/re normally referred as Copper/Chromium/ArseniC salt or simply CCA which are applied by pressure. Inspection of timber is carried out by experienced staff using visual and hammer testing. Ultrasonic testing with PURL (Portable Ultrasonic Rot Locator) and confirmation drill testing can also be adopted. Radiographic testing of splices c& be cmied out provided safety of public is ensured.

1.4.7 Preservatives Developed Abroad
Australia through its Forestry Commission has developed modem methods of similar preservatibn. The preservatives used are both barrier type and diffusing type. The former are generally copper based oils which may be applied by brush or spray or in emulsion d are generally copper/fluro/Boron gels. form. ~ h latter The two m c i p a l types of preservatives used in U.K. for building components a) The water boae salt types are the formulations based on solution of copper sulphate, sodium dichrornate and Arsenic Pentoxide. These are applied by pressure (b) Organic solvent based types - solutions consists of one or more organic fungicides in an organic solvent such as wbite spirit or a more refined solvent. Common fungicides are pentachlorophenyl, Tributyl oxide, zinc napthenate aid pentachloro phenyl laureate.

1.4.8 Sdfe Use of Preservatives
An imporbt safety aspect in connection with use of preservatives must be noted : preservatives are toxic and must be treated with care during storage and application. Some are f l a w b l e until the solvent has evaporated but thereafter the flammability of timber is not increa$edcompared with untreated timer.

Steel is mbufactured by several processes, the most important being Bessemer process and Open hearth process. The steel thus mane is converted into steel objects and sections r m e s & & The carbon content determines by the process of casting, rolling, forging or p the properlies of various steel like cast steel, wrought steer, Hard *el & spring steel, Quality h t s The usual tests connected with steel are: a) cold bend field test for Bars, Tests for Ruert bars,

b) c) d) e)

Tensile test. Compression test, Shearing test, Creep test, Fatiguetest, Impact or shock test, and Hardness test etc.,

MlnducCiw to Defects

g) h)

These tests give an idea of the properties of the steel.
Alloys Steel


Alloying elements like Nickel, Vanadium, Chromium. Carbon, Manganese, Silicon, Tungsten, Copper, etc., iue used to manufacture various improved types with specific properues like chrome steel, chrome nickel, steel, stainless steels. tool steels and high s p e d steels.

Defects may arise because of reasons attributable to the manufacturing process. Comsion 1s the inost important defect. Methodslprocesses employed to combat corrosion include : a) Galvanizing both hot dip and electm galvanizing - cold process, b) Nickel Plating, c) Chromium plating d) Tin plating, e) Terrain plating, and f) Electroplating.
Steel Reinforcement Corrosion


Reinforcing steel-corrosion is the most important defect. Reinfacing steel is surrounded by coixrete which provides a passive environment for steel. Fresh concrete is highly alkaline with a pH between 12 and 13. In this alkaline environment the thin film of iron oxide that is usually present at the surface of the metal is stabilised into a protective passive film. This passive film protects the reinforcing steel against corrosion. In addition well cured concrete of low water cement ratio has low permeability which minimises penetration of corrosion inducing solutions. The low permeability also increases the electrical resistivity of the concrete which assists in reducing the rate of corrosion by retarding flow of elecuical currents that accompany electrochemical corrosion. Corrosion of reinforcing steel is electrochemical degradation of the steel. It occurs whenever the protective passive film is destroyed by either carbonisation or by the presence of more than tlueshold concentration of chloride ions at the steel surface, in the presence of oxygen and moisture. Carbonation is the result of the reaction of carbon dioxide and other acidic gases in the air and the alkaline constituents of cement paste. As a result the alkalinity of the concrete - pH is reduced and the steel loses its protective film. Chloride ions can also penetrate the protective passive film with an accompanying shift in steel potential and subject the steel to the action of oxygen and moisture resulting in corrosion. Once the protective oxide film has been impaired and in the presence of oxygen and moisture, corrosion of steel will proceed. There are two mechanisms in steel corrosion, one elctrochemicaYphysicaland the other galvanidphysical. In marine environments,chlorides will permeate the concrete by absorption, capillary or though cracks. These chlorides in the presence of oxygen and misture may provide an acidic pTin an otherwise alkaline environment. The change in pH results in an electrochemical corrosion cell which with oxygen and moisture accelerates attack on the reinforcing steel. Corrosion products from the attacked steel create expansive forces within the concrete, causing it to spa11and crumble. As the steel is further exposed to oxygen it corrodes more and increases deterioration of concrete in a progressive manner. In general the electrochemical cornsion triggers galvanic corrosion by exposing the reinforcing steel to water.


Defecb i n Buildings

Corrosilon of reinforcing steel is possible during storage when exposed to nature. Deterioration is possible during transport. Defects may be there because of the manufacturing process. Preventive measures have been inuse after study of various aspects involved. Coatings to prevenl corrosion have also been evolved. From W e above you may understand that the best way of tackling corrosion of reinforckment steel in concrete is by use of quality concrete with minimum water cement ratio and ensuring full compaction to prevent entry of moisture.

What type of measures will you take for control of corrosion of Reinforced Steel ?


Construction practices/details like cover of concrete, curing etc., are well established means to itackle the problem concerning corrosion. Deterioration due to corrosion triggers deterioratfonin the surrounding concrete. Although both materials have separate deterioration mechanisms the deterioration of one affects the other. Defects id Cement Concrete Defects in concrete may be due to material used, due to actual construction, due to over loading arld due to environmental reasons like heat, wind, water and aggressive chemicals around. It is not only supervision during concrete mixing that is important but also the quality of b e materials used. If proper mixing is not done or inadequate compaction honeycorhbing may result. Voids in concrete are caused mainly due to wrong blending of stone and $and which has less frne particles. This causes lack of cohesion in the freshly made condrete and therefore it segregates during mixing, transporting and placing and results in Qoney-combed concrete. Design factors like reinforcement size and spacing, cover for reinforcement also determine the quality of defects free concrete.
Honey-corhbed Concrete

An usual cause of honey combed concrete is the tendency for the workers not to use vibrators td fully compact the concrete. Besides causing loss of strength in concrete ant, leakage in toofs, bathrooms and tanks, voids permit the entry of moisture which eventually corrodes reinforcing steel bars and the resulting rust further splits the concrete. Use of more than the required water to make it easy for placing weakens the concrete. Detailed sNdies have been made and reasons for development of cracks in concrete are well explairbed. Excessive fine sands lead to general wealcness in concrete on account of the high water cement ratid which their use entails. A coarse sand gives a stronger concrete than fme sand for theformer pennits cement to fill in the interstices between the sand particles and thus bind them together. In order that the cement may exercise the maximum binding action, the s k d should be coarse enough for cement and water to get through its pores and surround eaqh particle of sand. On the other hand, absence of sufficient fine sand below ' 300-micron mesh sieve tends to give harsh-working mixes prone to segregation and to local defects.
Cracks - Other Factors

One of the clpief causes of cracks in conqrete is the cooling and contraction which follows the evolutiod of heat due to hydration of ixment during setting of concrete. Volume change and sfresses due to shrinkage itre independent of any external load or stress applied. Minute craclds on the tension side of a reinforced concrete member are unavordable due to the poor tensile strength of concrete as compared to steel and which must crack when the steel reinforcement takes its load.

Cmcks Internal Stresses


In numerous cases it could be seen that the cracks occurred already during the first few days after placing the concrete before any loads act on the concrete structure. ?bey are caused by internal stresses (self equilibrating stresses) due to differential temperature which are higher than the slowly developing tensile strength of the concrete. The f hydration which the cement produces temperature must mainly be traced to the heat o during the hardening period. However, quite often wide cracks show up due to those effects, even when much reinforcement was placed, because the young concrete gives not sufficient bond strength for making rebars effective to limit the crack width.
It is necessary to prevent such early cracks by keeping the rise in temperature so low that the resulting stresses remain smaller than the tensile strength. This can be achieved by the following measures single or in combination.

Choice of cement with low initial heat of hydration.
The quantity of cement per Cu.m of concrete should kept as low as possible by proper design of the mix.


iii) 'Ibe heat development can be slowed down by adding fly ash or using slag cement as part replacement of OPC.

iv) During curing evaporation of water must be preventedat all open surfaces of the concrete structures by spraying a vapour barrier or by covering with a dense membrane. Only air,shrinkage can cause early cracks in young concrete, if the measures against evaporation are not applied.

H a i r cracks are partly due to the unequal shrinkage of the surface concrete and the mass
behind it. Delayed ffishing and final floating of concrete, up to a certain limit, avoids surface cracks. Surface cracks are also caused by surface dressing with a mortar too rich in cement, too much water, insufficient curing, or from over trowelling. Such hair cracks do not affect the strength of the concrete. One method of avoiding such hair. cracks is to remove the surface skin of the concrete by brushing it with a stiff brush soon after setting. Fine superficial cracking is known as "crazing". Contraction of concrete is more harmful than expansion as it sets up tensile stresses in the saucture, particularly those with a large surface area and thus form cracks. Such contraction cracks may be prevented by inserting reinforcement near the surface. Closely spaced reinforcement of small diameter and near the surface is more effective than large diameter bars further apart and further from the surface. Contraction or shrinkage of concrete in hot dry areas is much greater than that in damp and cool climates.
Repair Work

Repair work in concrete is difficult, as the fresh concrete does not easily stick to the old set concrete, The most effective way of repairing is by guniting where cement and sand are mixed and shot on to the surface of repair by compressed air. Special equipments are available for the purpose. Cementation is injecting under pressure cement grout into cracks. Holes are drilled at selected points and cement grout which is sufficiently fluid to ensure complete penetration is pumped in. The strength of reinforced member is in general little affected by the presence of fine cracks and such cracks can be closed by "stopping" and painting with cement paints. Surfaces of porous concrete or concrete of poor quality produce harmful dusts due to abrasion action. Treatment with sodium silicate (water glass) hardens the surface by fanning a glassy substance and measures wear resistance properties. Alkali Silica Reaction(ASR) and Chemical Effects Alkali Silica Reaction is a chemical reaction in which alkalies namely from the cement combine with certain types of silica in the aggregate when moisture is present. The reaction produces a gel which can absorb water and expand. The resulting internal micro cracking causes expansion of concrete. Internal regions expand more than external regions so that the external regions are put into tension and cause macro crack. .Although the cracking may appear severe it is generally not structurally significant because the cracks penetrate the concrete only to a limited depth. Furthermore exhaustive labratory and field testing have shown that structural performance in terms of strength and service Ioqd behaviour is not significantly impaired by ASR cradcing.

Defects in Buildings

Relationship between ASR and corrosion of reinforcing steel. It is not intuitively obvious whefher or not cracking due to ASR increases the risk of reinforcement steel corroding because a number of opposing factors are operative. a) A relative high pH is needed for ASR to occur but a high pH envrronment provides greater protection against corrosion. b) Cracked concrete usually carbonates quickly but expansion due to ASR in mainly associated with high moisture levels and this will tend to reduce the rate of carbonation However if carbonation reaches the steel the moisture will tend to increase the rate of corrosion. c) The cracks may be tilled with an alkali silica gel that will impede the penetration of salt water and C02. d) Salt water will probably pass into cracked concrete more easily than sound concrete although at the surface there may be a critical crack width below which there is little enhancedpenetration. Chamical attack of concrete initially shows change in colour and reduction in strength. Finfly the concrete crumbles to powder leading to collapse of the structure.
Impregnation of Concrete Structures

Thq ability of the surface layer of a concrete structure to repel harmful agents in the environment is considered to be most important as the location of reinforcement is near the cover layer, usually where the concrete is of lower quality than the heartcrete, the strongest concrete in the zone of the uniform higher quality concrete within the structure. T h q outer layer of poor concrete may be considerably more permeable than the core portion and if concrete lacks sufficient resistance to penetration of gases and water borne salp sealants and water repellents may be used in an attempt to enhance the surface prqtection Meinbers of concrete structures may be impregnated in order to protect new structures against chloride attack and to protect existing structures where corrosion is not yet ocdurring from further attack. Impregnation involves spraying concrete surfaces with a hydrophobic material that penetrates the surface and reacts with the silicates and moisture present to produce a water repellent and vapour permeable layer that inhibits the ingress of water and chlorination.
Monitoring Defects


For the purpose of monitoring in respect of defects optical fibre sensors are being developed. Monitoring is gaining an importance as the cost of maintenance and repairs increases dramatically due to deterioration from increased weights, air pollution, acid rain etc., The crack detection sensor, the crack width sensor, the chemical sensor are a few that are being developed. Non destructive testing methods while useful for determining physical properties of members are usually used in inspection to establish pliysical condition and extent of deterioration of structural members and systems. Test methods that are presently available, applicable to cement concrete and some fonns of steel are listed below. For a complete understanding reference is to be made to relevant literature.
Absorption and permeability: Determine surface absorption and


NPT Metbods for Determining Physical Conditions of Concrete

c) d) e)

permeability - Limited application and experience record. Acoustic emission: Monitoring structure during life - Expensive complex equipment. Detect locations of high stress concentration. Acoustic impact: Detect debonds, delamination voids and hair line cracks. Geometry and mass of specimen influence results.
Electrical resistance :Determines moisture content - Equipment very

Fibre optics: To view inaccessible portions of a structure: Equipment




Infrared thermography: To detect internal flows - Required special skill and equipment. Laser lnterfermetry: Determine crack initiation and crack propagation Expensive. Nuclear moisture meter: Estimate moisture content.

l ~ o a i o to o Defects


D .

g) h) i) j) k)

Radar Detection of substratum voids, delarninations etc., Equipment is expensive.
Ultrasonic pulse velocity: Estimate compressive strength. Coupling between transducer and test substrate critical. Useful for detecting cracks, voids. Visual examination: Evaluate condition of concrete surface - Trained evaluator required. Break off method: Estimate flexural strength - limited by maximum aggregate size.

m) Nuclear gamma radiation :Determine in place density - Results can be affected by reinforcing steel. n) o) p)

Neutron probe: Determine chloride content - An assumption on Chloride needed. Pull off testing: Estimates compressive strength. Rebound hammer: Compare quality of concrete at different zones of specimen. Results affected by condition of concrete surface. Resonant frequency testing: Detect avoids, delarninations, foreign objects etc., - still being developed.

r) Windsor probe: Estimate compressive strength. NDT Tests for Reinforcement Steel Cover MetersIMeasures cover, size and location of reinforcement. Electrical potential :Indicate condition of reinforcing steel - Information on rate of corrosion not provided. Radiography :Observe and measure hidden voids, porosity etc., -high cost C) heavy equipment, health hazard. d) Residual stress :By hole drill - measure residual stresses near the surface of mat. Applicable only to easily accessible surfaces. Materials for treating defectskracks. Surface treatment of concrete can be with sodium silicate, Boiled linseed oil, Bituminous paints. In respect of cracks. Butyl, silicone & polysulphide sealants are in common use. Epoxy resins and Epoxy monitors are well suited for closing cracks. a) b)


Defects in sanitary fittings like water closets, washhand basins etc., can be listed at Blister, Bubble, Crazing, Dull or Egg shell fmish. The following are the defects which occur a r k ,Pin during the manufacturing process. Dust exposed body, Fire check, Kiln support m holes, Polishing marks, speck, spot, warpage and wary finish. While selecting the materials due attention should be paid to ensure quality and reject defective fittings and fixtures should be rejected. In respect of Bib taps, stop cocks,Ball valves, floats etc., the standard specifications as per B.I.S. must be satisfied. To avoid defective functioning for items like Flushing system, proper rate of discharge should be ensured. Avoiding of self syphonage in the flushing tanks must be given specific attention. Proper slope in floor of bath rooms and location of traps at correct levels will help to avoid stagnation. The work should be got executed through skilled artisans. Water supply, sewage lines must be properly designed and laid with utmost care with respect to alignment, levels slopes etc. The jointing of pipes is of great importance. Manufacturing defects in pipes must be checked before use. Pipes both GI and P.V.C. for water supply installations must be checked for the design pressure according to the prescribed tests before use. Damages during handling and storage must be avoided.

oefects in Building

Standard p$actice of joining pipes in respect of Flanged joints, Screwedjoints, Rubber ring joints etc., must be strictly followed. Solvent welding for jointing P.V.C. pipes must be carried out by experienced personnel only. Proper and(periodic maintenance is necessary to ensure defect free service, continuously for long pqiods.

Numerous1types of floors are in use to suit specific requirements. Rejection of defective materials is the first step to check failure of floors. ?he specification given in the I.S. code should be strictly followed to avoid cracks. In respect of floors with P.V.C., Linoleum etc., the manufacturers instructions must be scrupulouBly followed to avoid defects. In constrqction attention must be paid to provide a solid surface, proper surface drainage and also appropriate joints. In desigqg the floors care must be taken about the effect of loading and environmental effects of1water, wind, climate etc.

Defects ip masonry construction both in stone and brick work may lead to structure failure. Rain water splashing, leakages from sanitory and water supply installations including drainage pipes from roof causedeteriorationof structures built with Bricks and stone. Sulphate attack from environment and also acids make the structures deteriorate quickly. Natural +&&iringaction is caused by rain, wind and use. Improper design may also result in cracks/. However most of the defects are attributable mainly to poor construction practice8. In order [toprevent defects utmost attention in construction practices is required at all stages of construction. Ensuring proper bond using through stones and avoiding vertical joints are essential. At junctions of main and cross walls effective bonds are required. In case of partition walls proper toothing is a must. The selection of good quality materials and test$ required to qualify the acceptability must be earnestly carried out. Repair @aterials in general use at present are Tar plastic compound as caulking compound. Hydropjast a bitumen dispersion, sika guard. Epoxy/Polymer coatings, Nitromortar an epoxy resin, Centricide powder, a polymer based grout for injection etc. Some of the causes for failure and repair methods are explained in detail in the ensuing units.


Defects Caused: Presence of water affects the qualities of timber. Water penetration induces corrosion in concrete and reduces its strength. Seepage of water into the foundakion causes its failure. Dampness in walls and floor of a building affects the health. of residents. Leakage through the roof of a building depicts bad images of the person in charge of the construction. Proper water proofing has to be carried out according to the requidment to protect the structure from leakage. If damages and leakage are allowed, the structure deteriorates and ultimately collapses.

1.10.1 Dampness
Damptless in buildings is generally due to bad design, faulty construction and use of poor materids. Structures built on high ground with proper drainage are for less liable to suffer from foundation dampness than those built on low lying water logged areas. In such locatiqns where a sub soil of clay or peat is commonly found dampness will inevitably rise unlessi properly treated. A sub soil through which water can easily pass through such as f i @avel or sandy soil will usually keep the foundation fairy dry. In coastal towns buildihgs are particularly prone to dampness because of high humidity and salt particles in the atinosphere. If the construction elements contain salt water, it is absorbed easily and results in damage.


I 1


Leakage generally occurs in toilet blocks from tlic 5;rlitat-y fittings. In new constructions leaks are due to permeability of the concrete due to use of substandard Quality of materials, improper compaction and the use of salt rich sand. Where the subsoil wateris not properly drained the hydrostatic pressure causes water to enter through the foundation. Same is the case where proper area drainage is not taken care of due to collection of water around the building.

1.10.3 Treatment - Dampness I Leakage
Engineering practice has well established numerous devices and procedures for effective treatment against dampness. Various water proofing methods have also been developed Uuough the years. The principle involved in water proofing is closing the voids in the building elements by use of chemicals which expand inside and close the pores or effectively covering the structural elements with water repellent materialsnayers. This principle has been in use for centuries even before the evolution of cement. Lime has been used for mortar for building water retaining structures. Lime has the property to expand due to formation of calcium carbonate, thus filling the voids. On the other hand cement has the property to shrink and lead to formation of voids. The effective use of lime can be understood from the standard established method of roof water proofing using brick bat coba and lime. Even in other recent water proofing systems recently being adopted combination m o r t a r with lime and cement is used in preference to cement mortar alone. Numerous water proofing chemicals and systems have been developed. The recent one is the use of polymers for the purpose. Polyurethane is found to be very effective to serve as water proofi~rg layer.


The distress in the structures and in the components of buildings is common. While the appearance of the cracks is alarming and may instil fear in the minds of the user, anticipating failure of the structure on many occasions, the structures could be repaired and restored. Thus knowledge of strengthening methods is quite necessary to tackle the damaged elements of the buildings. The causes for the distress of the structure should & analysed and the methods to be adopted to repair the component should be decided. After evaluating the various methods, the cost effective and correct course of action should be taken. The materials required for repairing should be selected and the equipments necessary for the work should be mobilised. As a number of new materials and methods are now available, the choice of material and methods are very important. As many times, the repair work may have to be taken up without vacating the premises o r closing down the activities, the services of cxpcrienced Ensineers and artisans should be utilised for such works.



What type of repairs you will suggest for repairing concrete structures? Explain the procedure for repair of dampnessneakage.



The knowledge of construction materials, defects likely to be developed and their performance in different circumstances will help the Engineers to select proper materials. The construction practices which lead to defects in the installations and systems must be understood and avoided to ensure defect free construction. ?be information about repair n~aterials and preservatives and methods adopted to overcome the defects will impart confidence to carry out repairs in time to put structure hto effective use and extending the

Defects in ~ d l d i n ~ s

life of structure. The approach with quality consciousness in proper maintenance should include timely inspection,regular monitoring to see that defectsfdeteriorationsare attended to effectively.

Refer preceding text for answers of all SAQs.

Master your semester with Scribd & The New York Times

Special offer for students: Only $4.99/month.

Master your semester with Scribd & The New York Times

Cancel anytime.