As marine construction specialists, we understand better than most the stakes in keeping seawalls operating at full capacity and in good shape. In addition to our full and comprehensive maintenance and repair services, we also offer to educate our clients on the main reasons why seawalls fail so as to prevent that from happening in the future. Failing seawalls can have very severe consequences and threaten structures all around the vicinity. We at Seawalls Michigan are interested in helping you prevent that from happening by sharing these tips. Make sure to look out for signs of seawall failure and contact us immediately if you see any.
Seawall Cap Failure
If exposed for an extended amount of time, the steel in a seawall which is essential for reinforcing concrete will corrode and ultimately fail. Shortly afterward, cracks will develop that will only expand over time and thoroughly compromise the structural integrity of the seawall. The seawall will quickly begin to sag. When you see this happening, it is likely that the solution is to replace the failing cap entirely as well as the panels. If you observe that your seawall cap may be failing, give our certified marine construction specialists a call immediately.
Toe and Beam Failure
Toe and beam failure is caused by insufficient beam penetration near the lower end of the panels or the bottom. This phenomenon inevitably will lead to the panels tilting out and subsequently cracking, rotating or fracturing the seawall cap. Toe and beam failure is very serious and is mostly caused by water currents that are fast, hard waves, dredging and rocky soil. Potential solutions include adding more rip-rap to the bottom of the seawall in order to reinforce it if the toe and beam failure isn’t too serious. Otherwise, you’re likely looking at replacing the panels completely.
Waterline failure most commonly occurs in worn and aged seawalls. When uneven pressure is applied to old, structurally compromised concrete, the reinforcing rods will quickly start corroding. This will quickly lead to panels cracking along the waterline. These cracks will only expand if nothing is done and will likely destroy the panels along the waterlines. Minor cracks can be patched, but if the waterline failure is any more advanced that that then you’re unfortunately looking at replacing the panels. If you suspect your seawall may be having waterline failure, give us a call immediately.
We at Seawalls Michigan offer fully comprehensive routine inspection, maintenance and repair services for seawalls – whether we built them or not – because we understand that poor maintenance is the number one reason why seawalls fail. We cannot stress enough how important responsible maintenance is if you want your seawall to last the full advertised service life and not ultimately failing, exposing you and your property to all sorts of vulnerabilities. If you see sagging, corrosion or any other sign that your seawall may be failing, give us a call immediately and we’ll be on site at your location as soon as possible.