The Rusty Signature of Steel Rebar

Work never stops when you’re running a growing business, and sometimes a weekend trip for travel hockey turns into a marketing opportunity. Our CEO, Erik Kiilunen, recently found himself at the Cornerstone Community Center in Ashwaubenon, WI, where two of his boys were playing in a hockey tournament.

Upon arriving at the facility, the very first thing he noticed was the concrete. It was impossible to miss the big rust splotches covering the concrete staircase and the walkway leading up to the stairs. While the usefulness of the concrete is not yet affected, it is an undeniable eye sore and definitely isn’t doing anything for curb appeal.

According to the plaque on the building, the community center was built in 2000 making it only 17 years old! Based on the size of the rust spots, the first signs of corrosion were quite some time ago! Wisconsin has some pretty cold winters so it’s safe to assume deicing salts are used pretty religiously, to make sure the hockey fans aren’t slipping and getting concussed. The salty solution is absorbed into the concrete and the steel begins inevitable corrosion. 

Making the better decision up front to go with rust-free reinforcement is often seen as a hassle. Composite rebar is not as common as steel, so people are quick to write it off as “risky” or “less than” or “too expensive”.  What they fail to consider is the cost of steel long term. 

One comment we hear is “Rebar is rebar. It gets buried and you never see it. We don’t want to bother with anything new.”

I’ll let you make your own conclusions on whether or not you “never see it” based on the photos below. 

If the owners could go back and use rebar that doesn’t rust, would they? Absolutely! 

With GatorBar you can avoid these rusty mishaps without increasing your budget up front. GatorBar is lightweight, low cost, rust-free, and high strength, making it a great choice for your next concrete project. Not only does it save you time and money in the short term, you won’t have to scrounge up extra cash for a face lift 15 years down the road.

Do it right so you only have to do it once!

Randy Oja

MJO Contracting

I wanted to drop a line and comment on your GatorBar product. This is the second project we’ve used it on and the first one that we used a power rake with. We placed the bar 18” OCBW and chaired it to 2 1/2” for a 5” slab. The GatorBar worked well, in particular we noticed how it rebounded back to the center of the slab after we drove over it, with steel rebar the rebar would often end up bent and left at the bottom of the slab, where it does nothing for crack control. Also, the labor savings on rebar placement was significant and I know the crew appreciated not having to wrestle with the heavy steel. We look forward to using it again on future projects.