Water damaged, demineralized concrete, below podium level in garage

The first clue was when the residents said that water drips on their cars, but they have to scrape a milky solid off their windshields. The building has a large open podium. Below, residents have built little shelters over the more valuable cars using corrugated metal.


Is this not carbonation of concrete?


@bnesbitt Do you have any pics of the concrete directly above the area in picture #1? Obviously that section it beyond it’s failure point. Just curious what the top side looks like.

There’s a single area drain just behind the tree.

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And a whole lot of standing water everywhere. Yikes… What a mess.


The caretakers wet wash the area, perhaps daily. It’s open to the sky as well.

This is not “carbonation of concrete” (Ca(OH)2 + CO2 → CaCO3 + H2O) though of course that’s happening also. The core problem is water seeping through the podium, and likely a leak in the area drain. We have strong “exterior elevated elements inspection” requirements locally (after the Irish Student Disaster) so a well-tuned local recognition of this problem, and solutions.

The Florida surfside condo collapsed a year and few months ago? Pretty sure I remember reading similar complaints from residents from that condo on the news. I sure hope this condo association is keeping track of the problem and scheduling the needed repairs promptly…

It’s a single owner property. I wrote particularly hard because it’s in a quake zone… thus I referred to a structural engineer for two items (water and quake) and a walking deck specialist contractor. You can’t see in the picture, but it’s a hillside location with four occupied floors and different height garage walls: not to be taken complacently regarding seismic forces.

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I was hoping Mr. Young was going to edimicate and edificate everyone on this overeducated way of saying it’s f@#*ed up. Us common folk don’t speak big letter words too often ya know… :smirk::wink:

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I agree, water is now causing havoc. The degree of degradation may be worse below the surface. It’s a ticking time bomb of sorts. In fact, it may have failed completely but the load is distributed or codependent on the surrounding structure. I’m not sure how many adjectives it will take to get the owner’s attention but terms such as “catastrophic, immediate, structural failure, loss of life or property” all come to mind.

Curious about these areas as well.

:stuck_out_tongue:No, you explained it perfectly…
This is not “carbonation of concrete” (Ca(OH)2 + CO2 → CaCO3 + H2O), " though of course that’s happening also."
Your doing a great job on your own, Michael. “It is not, though of course this is happening as well.”

Mr. Durante, being smug and arrogant is not a professional look. The only thing you teach members is this type rudeness is OK on the forum.

I have never heard the term demineralized concrete before. What I am aware of is, demineralized water, mortars, accelerated degradation. I was hoping you might shed some light on this term demineralized concrete. Thanks in advance.

The first posted picture has strong indications of rusted rebar that is expanding, which resulted in significant cracks in the precast concrete slab. The unknown deterioration within the concrete should be evaluated by a structural engineer. In fact, in this situation, I would go as far as having a conversation with the local AHJ.

The ridges at the bottom of each beam appear to be form marks (two part form). That creates a natural drip edge. The exposed marks are metal ties from the original rebar cage.

There’s insufficient visibility to determine if this is a pre or post tension beam.

What really snapped up my attention was drips through the entire garage: not just near the central drain. It’s like the entire concrete podium is saturated with water.

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That’s exactly what they are. At first I thought maybe they were precast, and butted up to each other, but after blowing up the picture, it looks like they were poured in place. The concrete contractor should have used a cup stone on those form seams to smooth them out after stripping the forms.

Clearly you should put on your reading glasses Robert. The OP posted that. Here let me help you.

Just like all of the boasting YOU do about how smart, experienced, knowledgeable, and professional you think you are? If you are ALL that you self proclaim to be, why didn’t you explain your original post after throwing out a technical term that 90% of people in the HI industry probably never even heard of? Afraid of getting called out for your infamous “copy/paste” of what can be found on the internet? Get over yourself.

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Looks like a form.

??? You need help.

Sorry, Michael. My apology.

This is true, especially when it comes to concrete. Concrete science is a discipline in which some people devote their entire lives. For me, understanding the basics is important and being able recognize a problem is what matters. Diagnosing the problem can become problematic for us very very quickly. For example, I would never be so specific as calling this problem out as illustrating carbonized concrete for there are special tests required to verify this condition.