Crumbling foundations in Conn. linked to presence of mineral found in aggregate

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Construction experts say there is no fix for the foundation problem. All concrete must be replaced, at an estimated cost of $150,000 or higher for each home.

June 15, 2016
Crumbling foundations in Conn. linked to presence of mineral found in aggregate

Photo: Ross Berteig/Creative Commons.

The cause of crumbling foundations in hundreds of homes in three Connecticut counties may be due to the presence of pyrrhotite, an iron sulfide mineral, in concrete. Two companies at the center of a state investigation into crumbling foundations have signed an agreement with the state to stop selling materials or products for residential foundations containing aggregate from Becker's Quarry in Willington.

Construction experts say there is no fix for the foundation problem. All concrete must be replaced, at an estimated cost of $150,000 or higher for each home. The two companies, J.J. Mottes Company, in Stafford Springs, and Becker Construction, in Willington, contend that the presence of the mineral is not enough to have caused the problem, but that it could become reactive with other elements, like water, under certain installations and environmental conditions.

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