Have you noticed cracks in your concrete patio, sidewalk or driveway? Those cracks can be caused by one of four issues. If you fail to pinpoint exactly what caused the problem, you will not be able to effectively make the repair. Here, you will learn what those four causes are to help you identify the cause and come up with a good solution.
Concrete mix is not something that can just be thrown together. If too much water is used in the mixture, it will cause the concrete to crack. If soupy concrete is poured, the excess water will evaporate and cause the concrete to shrink as it dries – this is where the cracks come from.
If you mix your own concrete, don't take any shortcuts. Follow the instructions on the bag to the letter. If you need to buy buckets, do so to ensure that the proper measurements are being used to avoid cracking issues as it dries.
You should never have puddles sitting on your concrete. Those puddles will cause the concrete to crack eventually because of the porous nature of the concrete. As the water sits, it becomes absorbed into the concrete and creates the perfect conditions for cracks.
If the puddles of water are allowed to sit for days, the damage could go beyond the surface. The supports under the concrete will begin to fail. If this happens, the concrete will need to be dug out, the support system replaced and fresh concrete poured and finished.
Missing Control Joints
Control joints are placed throughout concrete surfaces to prevent cracks from occurring as the concrete expands and contracts as the temperature changes. Not only do the joints have to be placed properly, but they also must be the correct depth for the project. If joints are cut into the surface improperly, the saw can cause the concrete below the joint to crack.
If you have trees or large shrubs that line your concrete surfaces, the roots can be contributing to the cracks. Under the surface, the roots are growing and could be putting pressure on the support system under the concrete slab. You have only two options – relocate the concrete or remove the tree or shrub.
In many cases, a concrete contractor can identify the cause of the problem easily and come up with a course of action that will prevent repairs from failing anytime in the near future. Contact a company like GatlinByrd Cement for more info.