Even a material as strong, durable, and long-lasting as concrete can become damaged and cracked. Cracked concrete can be aesthetically unappealing and signify possibly larger problems with the integrity of a structure. We are going to outline a few methods on how to repair surface cracks in concrete pathways and driveways, as well as possible causes and ways to prevent future cracks in your concrete surface. If your concrete cracks are beyond repair, B&S Commercial Power supplies concrete mixers that will provide you with perfectly mixed concrete for your new concrete driveway or pathway.
Cracked Concrete Repair Preparation:
We have outlined the steps you need to take before you begin repairing your cracked concrete pathway or driveway.
Remove Weeds: You will often find small weeds growing in the cracks in your concrete driveway or pathway as a result of the build-up of dirt in the cracks. Before you repair your concrete cracks, you need to remove all the weeds, including their roots, and the dirt that is trapped in the crack.
Remove Loose Concrete: The edges of the crack often have loose pieces of concrete. Use your finger or a tool and gently run it along the edge of the crack to remove any pieces of concrete that easily become detached.
Bevel Edges: Bevelling the edges of your concrete crack will increase the effectiveness of your concrete repair method. Take a hammer and a chisel, and gently chip a 45 degree V-shape into your crack.
Clean the Cracks: You need to ensure your cracks are clean from any concrete dust or dirt before you begin repairing the cracks. You can use a high-pressure cleaner, held at a distance to not further damage the cracks, to remove any remaining sediment from within the crack and on the concrete surface. A hose and a soft scrubbing brush will suffice if you do not have a high-pressure cleaner.
Allow to Dry: Allocate sufficient time for your concrete to dry before you begin your selected cracked concrete repairing method.
Cracked Concrete Repair Methods:
If you catch the cracks in your concrete pathway or driveway early on, you can sufficiently repair the cracks with any of these various crack repair methods.
1) Crack Filler:
Concrete crack filler can be used for shallow concrete cracks in your pathway or driveway.
The concrete crack filler comes premixed in a bottle. You simply need to place the nozzle of the bottle in the crack and fill the crack with the filler. Once you have filled the crack, remove the excess crack filler with a trowel to leave a smooth surface. It will dry as a flexible seal with a grey colour.
Crack filler is an inexpensive, quick, and easy-to-use solution to cracks in the surface of your concrete. Crack filler is also a way to water-proof your cracks and thus protect your concrete surface from water damage.
2) Expanding Foam:
Hydrophobic polyurethane expanding foam, or expanding foam for short, is recommended for long, deep cracks.
To repair your concrete cracks with expanding foam, place the foam nozzle deep into the crack and fill the cracks to the top with the foam, and then allow the foam to expand and harden. Once the expanding foam has hardened, you can then sand it down until it is level with the concrete surface.
To match the expanding foam to the concrete surface, as there may be a colour differentiation that will affect the aesthetic of the concrete surface, you can cover the foam with a thin layer of cement. Alternatively, you can use this as a creative opportunity and sprinkle colourful aggregates on the surface of the drying foam.
3) Epoxy Injections:
Epoxy injections are recommended for shallow cracks on a concrete surface.
Place the nozzle of your epoxy injection deep into the concrete surface, fill to the top of the crack, and allow to harden.
When selecting the epoxy, ask for a water repellent epoxy to assist in protecting your concrete pathway or driveway from water damage.
Epoxy injections are not a recommended concrete crack repair method if the cracks are due to overloading. The epoxy injections will not be able to withstand the weight of trucks or heavy vehicles, and will also crack in your concrete surface.
The epoxy injection concrete crack repair method can be difficult to do accurately, therefore, it is recommended to acquire professional assistance if you wish to use this method.
You can also simply use a cement mixture to fill shallow cracks in your concrete driveway or pathway.
To make the cement mixture, combine cement, sand, and water according to the cement mixture specifications. You will then scoop the cement and fill it into the cracks to the top of the bevelled edge in your concrete surface. Use a stick to compact the cement and remove any pockets of air. Then use a trowel to smooth the surface, and allow it to dry for roughly 24 to 48 hours.
The cement repair method is an easy and inexpensive concrete crack repair method. If you have a large concrete surface covered in cracks, you can use concrete mixers to adequately mix the large quantity of the required cement.
Causes of Cracked Concrete:
Understanding the causes behind your cracked concrete can help you select the best concrete repair method as well as prevent cracks from occurring again in your concrete driveway or pathway. We have outlined a few of the possible causes behind the cracks in your concrete pathway or driveway.
New Concrete Pathway or Driveway:
Rapid Curing: Curing is a critical process in your concrete driveway or pathway that will ensure the soundness, strength, and durability of your concrete. If your concrete cures too quickly, it means that the water has evaporated rapidly from the concrete. The hydration process will occur too quickly, and cracks in your concrete surface will occur.
Incorrect Water Ratio: An accurate ratio of water in your concrete is also important for your concrete to last without cracking or failing. As much as it is important to maintain the water content in the concrete while it cures, too much water can also cause cracks in your concrete. Concrete shrinks as it hardens as a result of the water evaporating. If you have excess water in the freshly poured concrete, the shrinkage rate will be increased, resulting in cracks.
Temperature Fluctuations: Fluctuating temperatures in the environment cause also cause your concrete to crack. Extreme heat or flooding will affect the curing process, and ultimately the strength, durability, and surface of your concrete.
Old Concrete Pathway or Driveway:
Tree Roots: If you have any established trees in the vicinity of your concrete pathway or driveway, the tree roots may have grown under your concrete surface. As the roots grow, they disrupt the concrete and push up parts of the concrete, causing cracks. The roots also may have upset the subgrade or subbase, which will also cause cracks in the concrete surface.
Water Erosion: If you have not designed your concrete driveway or pathway to enable water runoff, puddles of water will sit on your concrete surface after rain. If there are any fine cracks in your concrete surface, the water will slowly seep into the concrete, enlarging the cracks and causing damage to the structure of your concrete.
Overloading: Your concrete driveway may be cracked due to overloading as a result of cars or trucks that are too heavy on the surface. If you did not install a subgrade and subbase to accommodate for the weight of trucks in your driveway, your concrete surface will not be strong enough to handle the load.
How to Prevent Cracks in Concrete Pathways or Driveways:
Here are a few tips on how to prevent cracks in new concrete pathways or driveways.
Avoid Trees: The best way to prevent roots from causing your concrete to crack is to avoid creating a concrete pathway or driveway near trees. This is not always a viable option, which would mean that you would need to remove the nearby trees before you pour your concrete.
Prepare Subgrade and Subbase: A concrete surface needs an adequate subgrade and subbase to ensure strength, durability, and to minimise cracking.
Perfectly Mixed Concrete: You need to ensure that the cement, aggregates, and water are homogenously combined to prevent future cracks in your concrete surface. You can do this by hand, or you can use concrete mixers which will radically reduce the time, effort, and energy required to achieve perfectly mixed concrete.
Cure Correctly: Follow the best practices on curing concrete to ensure that your concrete pathway or driveway surface will remain crack-free.
Structural Assistance: You can also add structural assistance into your concrete driveway, such as wire mesh or steel bars, that will increase the strength and durability of your concrete surface.
Seal: As your concrete pathway or driveway will be outdoors, it will continuously be exposed to the harsh sun and rain. Add a protective seal or a waterproof seal to the surface of your concrete for increased longevity and protection against cracks.
B&S Commercial Power Concrete Mixers:
If you have tried to repair your concrete driveway or pathway but the surface is simply too cracked and damaged, you will need to redo the concrete surface. B&S Commercial Power has a range of concrete mixers that will make easy and quick work of mixing your concrete for your new pathway or driveway.
B&S Commercial Power supplies Baumax concrete mixers. We have selected Baumax based on the high-quality and superior performance of the Baumax concrete mixers. We can assure you that you will receive perfectly mixed concrete at an exceptional speed for your new concrete driveway or pathway.
We stock these various Baumax concrete mixer drum sizes so that you can conveniently find a portable concrete mixer suitable to the scale of your concrete project.
- Baumax BS360L Concrete Mixer fitted with Baumax RX200 2:1 Engine.
- Baumax 400L Concrete Mixer with Baumax RX200 2:1 Engine.
- Baumax BS500L Concrete Mixer fitted with Baumax RX200 2:1 Engine.
At B&S Commercial Power, safety is a top priority when it comes to the concrete mixers that we supply. All of the Baumax concrete mixers come with an enclosed engine cabin and ring gear cover to keep you safe and protected from injury when using the concrete mixers.
With B&S Commercial Power, you get to experience the efficiency, time-saving, and quality performance of the Baumax concrete mixers at an affordable price. We strive to deliver high-quality power tool solutions that are accessible for a wide range of budgets. The Baumax concrete mixers from B&S Commercial Power will be the perfect tool for redoing your concrete driveway or pathway.
Fix surface cracks in your concrete pathway or driveway with our top concrete repair methods, or replace your concrete surface with perfectly mixed concrete from your B&S Commercial Power concrete mixers.