Tag: Concrete Repair

Spalling Concrete Repair

Spalling Concrete RepairSpalling concrete appears to becoming a huge problem, for home owners as well as cities and building owners. Many consumers find that their concrete sidewalks leading to their homes look like the one in this picture. Others like myself are finding that their cement garage floors are spalling and look terrible. The good news is that they can be fixed and you just have to find the right solution to make the repair. The following steps are a brief summary of what to do to repair your side-walk or your garage floor. Note that local conditions may dictate when you do this repair work. For example outside work should be completed in dry conditions, less wind and on a cloudy day to achieve best results. Temperatures should be well above freezing.

Spalling Concrete Repair

  • Thoroughly Clean the concrete floor with a blower to remove all loose dust and any other material that may be present.
  • Use a pressure washer to dislodge loose particles that are about to lift up from the floor as well as remove other stains that could prevent the new concrete from binding
  • If there are oil stains, these need to be removed by removing the concrete or by using an acid to provide clean unsoiled concrete.
  • Use a blower again to clear off all loose particles that might remain
  • Mix one part Portland cement and two parts sand to a thick consistency like thick applesauce. Course sand can be used to provide a rougher surface if needed.
  • Apply cement paint to surface to act as a glue to help the cement – sand mixture to adhere to the existing concrete
  • Apply cement to surface immediately before cement paint dires from 1/8″ to 1/4″ thick to fully hide all spalling areas. If you are doing a sidewalk, you will want to install a form on either side to help ensure the proper thickness is applied.
  • Allow it to thoroughly dry before using

Spalling Concrete Causes

Spalling Concrete RepairMost consumers have seen spalling concrete and wonder what are the spalling concrete causes? We find our sidewalks in front of our homes, or perhaps our garage floors looking like the one in the picture. One section of sidewalk might be fine, while the very next section is badly spalled. The fundamental cause is usually contractors who do not finish the concrete properly. They add water to the surface to keep it moist until they have a chance to finish it or they start finishing the surface before the bleed water has a chance to be absorbed. Both of these actions weaken the surface of the concrete making it susceptible to environmental conditions.

Spalling Concrete Causes

Consumers who live in areas that are exposed to constant freeze – thaw conditions may experience more severe spalling conditions in their concrete sidewalks and garage floors or driveways. Once the surface is weakened, water can get between the cracks and when it freezes will cause the surface of the concrete to lift up and particles will be dislodged.

In most cases it is only the surface that lifts up. The underlying concrete will not be impacted and will remain strong. The surface does not look great and can even devalue your home when it comes time to sell it.

In our next post “Spalling Concrete Repair”, we will quickly explain how consumers can do their own repairs and make their garage floor, sidewalk or driveway look like new again.


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