Concrete can become damaged for a number reasons. One of the most brutal “villains” that targets concrete is the weather. Heavy snowfall in the winter followed by heat waves in the summer cause concrete to expand and shrink. This is what causes cracks. Sometimes, the concrete doesn’t crack. It shatters.
Minor problems that are not addressed quickly could become worse over time. A salvageable concrete block might be completely destroyed if one or two years go by, which allows more stress to occur. So, you really do need to be on top of concrete repairs and understand how they work. Otherwise, you end up with an unsightly safety hazard in front of your property.
Small Patches May Work on Equally Small Problems
A home improvement store usually carries many different products designed to fill cracks or perform minor repairs on broken concrete. If the problem is small enough that a patch would prevent further damage, a patch job might be worth exploring. Of course, the patch job does need to be done right or else an uneven sidewalk results. This could create an ugly trip hazard. It would be best to leave the repair job to someone who knows what he or she is doing. Otherwise, the damage could be worsened.
Realize Weather Factors into Fixes
There’s water inside mixed concrete. Performing any type of repair job in freezing weather could prove disastrous. The water in the concrete would likely turn to ice prior to a complete concrete set. Granted, there are special anti-freeze products that could be mixed into the cement. Such products become a preference of people who must perform an emergency fix.
Also, extremely hot weather can undermine a proper concrete set. Clearly, checking the weather before performing any repair work makes sense.
Understand Concrete Doesn’t Stick to Concrete Forever
Resurfacing concrete might be the choice of those who want to repair a block or driveway loaded with cracks and imperfections. Resurfacing, also known as skim coating, refers to adding a thin layer of new concrete on top of the old concrete after repairing cracks. This definitely can improve things, but only for the short term. Concrete won’t stick to concrete forever. Even when using special adhesives, the resurfaced layer will eventually break apart. At that point, another solution would need to be employed to fix things.
Accept the Concrete Must be Replaced
At some point, repair job simply won’t work. The concrete has been damaged past the point of any repairs. That means the concrete must be broken up and removed. New concrete has to be poured in its place. A totally new concrete job comes with a much higher cost than a patch repair. However, replacing the damaged concrete with new concrete might be the only viable solution to fix things.