As the water freezes and thaws, it expands and contracts inside the structure, forcing the beam to give. This can result in cracked or popped tiles. Long, horizontal cracks in the tile are another symptom of a cracked bond beam.
Repairing a compromised bond beam is a complex process that should only be attempted by the most proficient do-it-yourselfers.
1. First, remove loose or cracked coping and tile. Using a grinder drill bit, grind down to the solid sections of the beam and remove all the debris.
2. Fill the beam with hydraulic cement, using steel rebar plugs wired together to create the new form.
3. Remove the forms and set new tile, coping and caulk.
Because this process is so involved, it may be more cost-effective to hire a professional to do the work. The location of the crack plays a role in the cost. Repairs are less expensive If the crack is just below the coping, than if if the crack is below the tile band.
To prevent damage to a bond beam, inspect expansion joints carefully. Replace caulk that is cracked, delaminated or missing. Address any cracked tiles or other signs of a damaged beam immediately.