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How to add reinforced concrete columns to an existing building

Reinforced concrete columns are mainly used to carry loads of a building. They transfer these loads to a suitable safe soil bearing capacity. Sometimes a building may have only the load bearing walls. These structure may not safely carry an additional floor above. The house may also need a roof change from light weight materials like galvanized iron sheets to the heavier concrete or clay roofing tiles. These will necessitate more bracing of the unit to carry these additional loads.

The reinforced concrete columns in a building can be finished using plaster render, cladding’s or left with the concrete color. Whatever the finish, it should give good aesthetics to the wall facades. These columns may be erected free standing or within the building fabric. They may have the usual rectangular or square shape, though it may also have the circular shape. It is important to assess the points where to erect columns. This is so that all the necessary supports are put in place before any cuttings are done safely.

The procedure of adding reinforced concrete columns, is by marking out all the points to add columns. The walls and roofs are supported using props and bracing. The columns should be place at all building corners and any load bearing walls intersections. The wall is cut carefully up to the beam level. Concrete at the roof beam level is hacked and removed to expose the reinforcements. The wall opening should have a masonry toothing. A pit is excavated for the foundation base and column starter bars. The base and the column is then cast and vibrated well.

The column starter is cured after seven days. Additional reinforcement is added to the roof level and joined with the beam steel. Hoop iron is done at alternate courses passing through the steel from both the wall ends. This is to allow the wall to be strengthened after the cutting. Form work is then done. Concrete is cast and vibrated. The form work is removed after seven days of curing. The process is repeated at every point where they will be a reinforced concrete column. The appropriate finish is then done to match with the existing wall surface facades.

Source by Andrew Karundu

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