Eight-Storey 1960s Building Remedial Wall Ties

Eight-Storey 1960s Building Remedial Wall Ties

Eight-storey 1960s concrete frame building in Aldershot, Hampshire. Cavity cleaning and remedial wall ties.

case study 56e19e33705823.06859207 - Eight-Storey 1960s Building Remedial Wall Ties

 

Cavity Wall Problems

The subject building started as a 1960s eight-storey commercial concrete frame building that was converted to 50 flats in 2004. Dampness, poor insulation and instability to the brickwork flack walls and brickwork features were constantly experienced and reported.

case 47 a - Eight-Storey 1960s Building Remedial Wall Ties

case 47 a 1 - Eight-Storey 1960s Building Remedial Wall Ties

case 47 a 2 - Eight-Storey 1960s Building Remedial Wall Ties

case 47 a 3 - Eight-Storey 1960s Building Remedial Wall Ties

case 47 a 4 - Eight-Storey 1960s Building Remedial Wall Ties

Action Wall Ties was instructed to engage a firm of consulting structural engineers to jointly undertake an intrusive inspection in order to establish a defects report on our findings to enable the design of a suitable remediation.

case 47 b - Eight-Storey 1960s Building Remedial Wall Ties

case 47 b 1 - Eight-Storey 1960s Building Remedial Wall Ties

case 47 b 2 - Eight-Storey 1960s Building Remedial Wall Ties

case 47 b 3 - Eight-Storey 1960s Building Remedial Wall Ties

case 47 b 4 - Eight-Storey 1960s Building Remedial Wall Ties

case 47 b 5 - Eight-Storey 1960s Building Remedial Wall Ties

Concrete Frame Cavity Wall Repairs

Following AWT and Conisbee’s intrusive investigations a remedial scheme was developed that proposed providing temporary support at each floor beam, with AWT developed props, to accommodate the continuous removal of brickwork to clean the cavity and install a cavity tray

This was followed with the reinstatement of the brickwork, together with remedial wall ties and bed joint reinforcement to assist in supporting the brickwork.

Once the intrusive survey has been completed, remedial wall ties were installed and the areas of bridged cavity identified for cleaning to the foot of each infill wall line.

case 48 b 1 - Eight-Storey 1960s Building Remedial Wall Ties

AWT are experts in repairing cavity wall ties and other common defects on high rise concrete frame buildings. We work together with housing associations, councils and structural engineers to find economical and effective solutions.

Kent based AWT serve customers in London and the whole of SE England. Contact us today to see how we can help. Call 01227 721 255 or email us.

Seven-Storey Building NHBC Warranty Remedial Works

Seven-Storey Building NHBC Warranty Remedial Works

This seven-storey building in Croydon, South London required remedial work under the NHBC warranty scheme. This included stainless steel support angles, horizontal soft joints and Sika CarboDur strengthening carbon fibre plates.case study 56e19e6e7125e0.29228426 1 - Seven-Storey Building NHBC Warranty Remedial Works

The subject building was a contemporary designed seven-storey apartment building.

case 49 a - Seven-Storey Building NHBC Warranty Remedial Works

The Structural Problem

The building was found to be deficient from the one that had been designed and remedial works were instigated by NHBC warranty. Consulting structural engineers were engaged to design the required compliant remediation works and Action Wall Ties were engaged to undertake the works.

The Structural Repair Solution

The remedial works involved the introduction of stainless steel support angles with horizontal soft joints and Sika CarboDur strengthening carbon fibre plates to concrete beam, together with remedial wall ties and bed joint reinforcement.

We removed the external brickwork skin exposing the concrete beam and prepared the concrete surface removing any ridges with a concrete planer, cleaned and primed ready for and applied Sika CarboDur structural strengthening system 80mm strips bonded with Sikadur 30 in accordance with manufactures and AWT methods. Thereafter, we installed stainless steel support angles and reinstated the brickwork.

case 49 b - Seven-Storey Building NHBC Warranty Remedial Works

case 49 b 1 - Seven-Storey Building NHBC Warranty Remedial Works

case 49 b 2 - Seven-Storey Building NHBC Warranty Remedial Works

case 49 b 3 - Seven-Storey Building NHBC Warranty Remedial Works

AWT are structural repair contractors. We work with local authorities, housing associations, the NHBC and other organisations to provide cost effective structural repairs to both low rise and high rise blocks. Our repair techniques ensure the minimum amount of disruption to residents.

AWT are available for contracts in Kent, Sussex, Essex, Surrey and the whole of London. Please get in touch using our contact form, by calling 01227 721 255 or email us.

Cavity Wall Construction History

Cavity Wall Construction History

This overview of the history of cavity walls looks at how the use of cavity walls started. It also looks at some of the problems that property owners need to be aware of and how AWT can help to solve these issues. Read on to find out about:

  1. Development of Cavity Wall Construction
  2. Wall Tie Corrosion
  3. Wall Tie Life Expectancy
  4. Wall Tie Damage by Corrosion
  5. Modern Wall Ties
simple horizontal - Cavity Wall Construction History
case 54 d - Cavity Wall Construction History
case 54 c - Cavity Wall Construction History
Masonry Damage from Corroded Wall Ties
Cracked Bricks from Failing Wall Ties
 
simple horizontal - Cavity Wall Construction History

Development of Cavity Wall Construction

Cavity wall construction has almost entirely replaced solid wall construction in the United Kingdom. It evolved in the latter years of the nineteenth century and became common in dwellings in northern and western Britain in the early 1900s.

Its widespread adoption as virtually standard in the construction industry happened throughout the building booms of the 1920s, ‘30s and ‘40s.

The gallery above shows the typical outer leaf (the external brickwork) of a cavity wall and the type of damage often associated with failing cavity wall ties.

When identifying whether a wall is of solid or cavity construction, something to be aware of is that the presence of headers in the brickwork (bricks laid with the smallest side facing out) is not always indicative of solid brickwork.

From the mid-1940s to the mid-1950s, “snapped headers” were often used in cavity wall construction to emulate the English bond brickwork pattern that was common in solid brickwork.

Action Wall Ties can help identify whether your property has cavity walls or solid brickwork and diagnose the underlying cause of structural defects.

In the early years, the skins of these cavity walls were held together by metal ties made from cast or wrought iron, mild steel or copper.

Wall Tie Corrosion

The corrosion of wall ties was first officially recognised in the 1960s in South Wales. At first, it was thought to be due to a combination of poor tie protection and exposure to the elements. Time has shown that many of the early ties and mortars were just more susceptible to corrosion.

Mild steel ties initially were either left unprotected or given a bitumen coating, but in the early 1930s zinc coatings or galvanising became accepted.

old corroded wall ties - Cavity Wall Construction History

The most common type of mild steel ties (under BS 1234) are strip ties (commonly known as vertical twist or fishtail) and wire ties (commonly known as butterfly or double triangle). The photo shows a range of traditional wall ties, all of which are prone to corrode and fail over time. In contrast, modern wall ties are carefully designed for strength and durability.

Wall Tie Life Expectancy

It is very difficult to predict the life expectancy of ties used in the construction of houses before 1945.

However, it can be fairly accurately predicted for those built between 1945 and 1964 :

  • Strip ties will probably last somewhere between 31 and 61 years
  • Wire ties will probably last somewhere between 15 and 31 years.

The expected life of ties used in construction between 1964 and 1981 is estimated at:

  • 23 to 46 years for strip ties
  • 13 to 26 years for wire ties.

ALL mild steel wall ties will eventually corrode – the only question is when!

As shown in the photo, Action Wall Ties can survey cavity wall ties by drilling small inspection holes and using an endoscopic camera to assess the wall ties. Contact us to arrange a wall tie survey.

case 54 a e1642420655249 - Cavity Wall Construction History

Wall Tie Damage by Corrosion

The key here is catching the problem as early as possible. If the symptoms are recognised before deterioration has progressed too far, the walls may be re-stabilised rather than needing to be re-built.

Old ties must be located using an electronic detector and replaced with a suitable corrosion-resistant remedial fixing.

Finally, existing ties will need to be isolated to prevent further damage to the outer leaf of brickwork. Corrosion of a tie within the inner leaf of a cavity wall is unlikely to become significant as they are embedded in a dry environment.

AWT’s specialist equipment allows them to isolate failing wall ties and install remedial wall ties with minimal disruption by working from the outside of the building.

Ferrous oxide (rust) will result when embedded mild steel wall ties corrode. This will expand to several times the thickness of the metal it has resulted from, often breaking through the outer leaf of the brickwork (sometimes splitting the bed joints) and causing either lifting or bowing of the walls and damage to internal finishes.

simple horizontal - Cavity Wall Construction History
rusty wall tie repairs kent - Cavity Wall Construction History
wall tie 1 - Cavity Wall Construction History
wall tie 2 - Cavity Wall Construction History
wall tie - Cavity Wall Construction History
rusted wall tie - Cavity Wall Construction History
rusted wall tie1 - Cavity Wall Construction History
Rust Damaged Wall Tie
Rusty Wall Ties
Failed Wall Tie
Crumbling Wall Ties
Rusted Wall Tie
Corroded Wall Ties
 
simple horizontal - Cavity Wall Construction History

From a structural perspective, this leaves the wall vulnerable to vertical and wind loads, especially in the case of large gable and unreturned walls. The instability of the wall will eventually result in the ties corroding away completely, necessitating the rebuilding of the wall. The gallery shows how corrosion causes the cavity wall ties to lose strength and eventually crumble away.

Modern Wall Ties

As shown below, Action Wall Ties uses a range of modern cavity wall ties that are far superior to traditional wall ties. Using their many years of experience, AWT selects the most appropriate remedial wall tie style for each project.

remedial stainless steel wall ties - Cavity Wall Construction History

There are 3 main types of replacement wall ties:

  1. Mechanical
  2. Helical
  3. Resin or grout bonded

All AWT’s replacement wall ties are made from high-grade stainless steel. They are designed to restore structural integrity and provide a long lasting solution to cavity wall tie issues.

Equipment designed by AWT can also realign brickwork that is bulging and bowing due to failing wall ties before installing new wall ties and lateral restraints.

Kent based Action Wall Ties (AWT) are specialists in wall tie surveys and replacement, providing professional solutions to a wide variety of cavity wall problems. We serve domestic and commercial customers, local authorities, housing associations and insurance companies across London, Kent, Essex, Sussex and Surrey.

Contact us to discuss your requirements or book a survey on 01227 721 255, or email us.

 

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