How does a constant drip of water eventually erode concrete over time?

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It doesn’t even need to be dripping directly onto the surface. I’ll give you an example: I’ve seen A/C condensate water coming out of the roof drains of a building, and you can see a clear path where the water eroded away the cement, leaving the concrete’s aggregate exposed. I know water can do some impressive things, (Grand Canyon) but how does the water flowing over the surface actually cause erosion? Let’s say the gutter of a roof is allowed to drip onto a concrete surface, how exactly does it wear it away give enough time?

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12 Answers

Anonymous 0 Comments

Water is the (almost) universal solvent. More substances dissolve in water than in any other chemical. It’s beyond an ELI5, but it has to do with the charges on the H2O molecule being able to disassociate lots of stuff.

Anonymous 0 Comments

It’s pretty much mechanical wear. Even though water seems to be flowing into whatever shape it’s on, it still has mass and would “prefer” to keep going the direction it already was.

It physically grinds the other material down, but at a microscopic scale. This happens faster if there’s a rough surface for the water to get caught on, but even if it’s a smooth surface, the physical forces of trillions of water molecules will eventually knock something loose.

Anonymous 0 Comments

Water is the (almost) universal solvent. More substances dissolve in water than in any other chemical. It’s beyond an ELI5, but it has to do with the charges on the H2O molecule being able to disassociate lots of stuff.

Anonymous 0 Comments

Water is the (almost) universal solvent. More substances dissolve in water than in any other chemical. It’s beyond an ELI5, but it has to do with the charges on the H2O molecule being able to disassociate lots of stuff.

Anonymous 0 Comments

It’s pretty much mechanical wear. Even though water seems to be flowing into whatever shape it’s on, it still has mass and would “prefer” to keep going the direction it already was.

It physically grinds the other material down, but at a microscopic scale. This happens faster if there’s a rough surface for the water to get caught on, but even if it’s a smooth surface, the physical forces of trillions of water molecules will eventually knock something loose.

Anonymous 0 Comments

It’s pretty much mechanical wear. Even though water seems to be flowing into whatever shape it’s on, it still has mass and would “prefer” to keep going the direction it already was.

It physically grinds the other material down, but at a microscopic scale. This happens faster if there’s a rough surface for the water to get caught on, but even if it’s a smooth surface, the physical forces of trillions of water molecules will eventually knock something loose.

Anonymous 0 Comments

On top of the other answers, rainwater is almost always acidic from the CO2 in the atmosphere, and concrete is based on limestone, and therefore basic, and therefore the rain will eat into the limestone chemically, slowly, but remorselessly

Anonymous 0 Comments

On top of the other answers, rainwater is almost always acidic from the CO2 in the atmosphere, and concrete is based on limestone, and therefore basic, and therefore the rain will eat into the limestone chemically, slowly, but remorselessly

Anonymous 0 Comments

On top of the other answers, rainwater is almost always acidic from the CO2 in the atmosphere, and concrete is based on limestone, and therefore basic, and therefore the rain will eat into the limestone chemically, slowly, but remorselessly

Anonymous 0 Comments

If its a drip from a condensate, then co2 will be dissolved in the water to make carbonic acid.
A weakly acidic water will react with brickwork