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Discussion Starter #1
I'm having a strange problem with my patio and I can't find anything on the net that seems to match my problem. I think the patio may be deteriorating for some reason.

It was poured about 5 months ago (around Thanksgiving of last year). This week, as I was spraying off the patio, I noticed several holes in it. Here's a picture of the largest one.



Also, most of the patio looks 'pitted', as seen in this picture.



The surface was brushed, so it was always a little rough, but I don't recall these pits being all over it before.

Another thing that happens is it becomes darker in places when it gets wet. Not uniformly dark, but blotchy.

Here's a picture dry.



Here's the same area after being sprayed for a few seconds.



This doesn't seem normal to me. And what concerns me is that the large hole in the first picture had dark edges and when I touched them, the cement seemed to just flake away.

We had the contractor that poured the patio come out to look at it and he seemed a bit perplexed as to what was happening. He guessed that maybe something got into the cement and caused the holes. He's going to come back in a week and fill the holes with Pour-Stone, which he thinks will solve the problem. He did make it pretty clear that that's all he's willing to do and he said that most cement companies don't guarantee their cement.

This has left me with a strange feeling. I paid good money for this to be done and it feels like no one is standing by their work. Much as I hate to, I may have to eventually have a judge decide.

Anyway, I thought I'd post these pictures and see if anyone had any ideas what was happening to the patio and if there was any solution. Some kind of sealant to put on the patio, or something...?
Thanks in advance.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
It looks like it was overtrowelled and not cured well.
Thanks for the reply.

Is there anything I can do to prevent more holes. I've seen some sealants for concrete (some say for patios) - I wonder if that would smooth out the rough spots and prevent it from getting worse...?
 

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What was the temps at the time of the pour? What was the curing process? The holes look like debris close to the surface dislarged. As stated, over floating can be an issue. All that cement rich sediment is drawn to the top. This compromises the surface. Over time, expect an exposed aggregate slab. If the concrete dried too quickly, expect a shorter slab lifespan.
There is nothing you can do at this point to remedy the above issues.
Ron
 

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Discussion Starter #5
What was the temps at the time of the pour? What was the curing process?
I don't remember the exact temp, but it was around Thanksgiving of last year, in southern California. It was probably pretty cool. I don't know anything about the curing process.

The holes look like debris close to the surface dislarged. As stated, over floating can be an issue. All that cement rich sediment is drawn to the top. This compromises the surface. Over time, expect an exposed aggregate slab. If the concrete dried too quickly, expect a shorter slab lifespan.
There is nothing you can do at this point to remedy the above issues.
So, the only way to make this right is to rip this up and pour a new slab?

It looks like he didn't know what he was doing and probably isn't going to do the right thing now. Well, I guess that's why we have courts...
 

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Set concrete used

I don't remember the exact temp, but it was around Thanksgiving of last year, in southern California. It was probably pretty cool. I don't know anything about the curing process.



So, the only way to make this right is to rip this up and pour a new slab?

It looks like he didn't know what he was doing and probably isn't going to do the right thing now. Well, I guess that's why we have courts...
Hi, I think you're right about removal.
It looks like the concrete was set prior pouring, indicating by iregular pores. Concrete like this has lost most of it strenght. It is not acceptable in normal usage.

If level is not a matter, just add a new good layer on it to save the look, otherwise "rip it up and pour a new one". This -off course- is thing on technical side.

Paralel to this, the court can do their job..
 

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I have seen situations like this before. The biggest cause of something like this here in Colorado is that the surface froze before it cured. This is unlikely in your case as November in SoCal would be an ideal curing enviro. In my opinion, from the photos, I would say there was a contaminate in the mix. I would also guess it was oil. When oil gets in concrete it takes it's time migrating to the surface and when it does it can make a once perfect job look horrible.

My advice, let the contractor do all he will do. If he cares about his business he will make it better. Sealing the patio will help as it will keep water out of what appears to be a fairly porous slab. There are also resurfacing systems that act as a super sealer/dress up that are way cheaper to have done than a tear out and repour. On a problem of this scale I would forget about the courts. One day with an attorney will cost as much as just fixing it.
 
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