Freeze Thaw Cycle and Prevention of Damage to Concrete

Freeze Thaw Cycle and Prevention of Damage to Concrete

Posted by Alex Hernandez on Dec 4th 2018

The unique property of water to expand when it freezes leads to a common issue facing concrete known as the  freeze-thaw cycle. This occurs when there are wide fluctuations in daily temperatures that cause snow or ice to melt allowing it to be absorbed into the concrete. When the temperature drops again, the water in the concrete freezes, expands and causes breakage of the cell walls inside the concrete. This damage over time leads to many more well known issues facing concrete owners such cracking, pitting and spalling or flaking of the surface. Many times this damage is blamed on using de-icing salts on the concrete but the culprit is in fact - the freeze-thaw cycle. 

Most homeowners believe that concrete is the last piece of their property that they need to worry about. They believe that concrete is a solid substance that will last forever.  If the driveway needs to be replaced, many homeowners are caught by surprise.  This is an issue they never thought they would have to deal with. But there are many ways that concrete can be damaged and this damage usually occurs slowly over years. Freeze-thaw damage happens inside the driveway and does not become visible for three or four years when it starts appearing on the driveway in the form of cracks, pits, or spalling or flaking of the driveway surface. 

Most homeowners do not realize that a concrete driveway that is taken care of properly can survive up to 20 years or longer.  An unsealed, unprotected driveway in the Kansas City area which averages approximately 90+ freeze-thaw cycles each winter will only last about 7 years.  A homeowner who has replaced a driveway is not apt to want to repeat that activity.

So then, how can SealGreen help homeowners? SealGreen’s line of penetrating, chemically-reactive sealers for Concrete, Brick, and Stone allow a safe and effective way for preventing water and moisture from being absorbed. This mitigates the wear and damage that accumulates over the years from the Freeze-Thaw Cycle.

Product Links Concrete Sealer -  Kennel Sealer -  Brick and Stone -  Snow and Ice Melters