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Crack Control according to Eurocode 2

Cracking shall be limited to an extent that will not impair the proper functioning or durability of the structure or cause its appearance to be unacceptable. Cracking is normal in reinforced concrete structures subject to bending, shear, torsion or tension resulting from either direct loading or restraint or imposed deformations. Cracks may also arise from other causes such as plastic shrinkage or expansive chemical reactions within the hardened concrete. Such cracks may be unacceptably large but their avoidance and control lie outside the scope of Eurocode 2-1.1.


Cracks may be permitted to form without any attempt to control their width, provided they do not impair the functioning of the structure. A limiting calculated crack width, wmax, taking into account the proposed function and nature of the structure and the costs of limiting cracking, should be established. Wmax is defined in the National Annexes. The recommended values are presented in Table 1 below.


Table 1: Recommended values of wmax(mm). (Eurocode 2– Table 7.1Ν)

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