When your concrete driveway starts falling apart, you want to get it fixed fast. However, the best repair option for your situation will depend on what type of damage the concrete has sustained and what caused it. Here are three types of concrete repair and the type of issues they can address.
Cracks and holes in the surface of the concrete is one of most common types of driveway damage. These problems can occur due to aging, severe weather, and other problems (e.g. flooding). If this is the only issue affecting your driveway, then concrete resurfacing may be the best repair for this situation.
This repair option involves cleaning the concrete, patching the cracks and holes with either a concrete polymer or an epoxy mortar. If the cracks and holes are really bad, the concrete may be reinforced with fabric or other supportive materials. Afterwards, the entire driveway surface is covered in a new layer of concrete, cured for a few days, and over sealed to protect it from the elements.
Concrete resurfacing has the effect of making your driveway look brand new, without the price tag associated with completely replacing the damaged material on your driveway. Additionally, you can add a variety of decorative touches, such as coloring or etching, to add visual interest to your driveway. Depending on the size of the driveway, you can expect o pay anywhere from $2,000 to $5,000 for the repair.
Concrete Surface Engraving
Not all driveways suffer from severe damage. In some cases, the problem are small thin cracks that don't actually cause problems but make the driveway look bad. Thus, concrete resurfacing may be overkill. An alternative to fix a primarily cosmetic issue is to opt for concrete engraving.
This process is just as it sounds. Using special etching tools and equipment, a professional will carve a pattern into the concrete of your driveway. If you prefer, the concrete may be stained to provide an artistic dimension to the pattern. In addition to giving your driveway a unique look, the pattern will cover up the spidery cracks that make it look so bad. In fact, sometimes the cracks will enhance the pattern and give your driveway a unique look.
It's important to note that concrete engraving is permanent, so spend time choosing a pattern you can live with for the rest of the time you'll be living in your home and one that will be attractive to future homebuyers. Also, this option is only appropriate for driveways with shallow cracks. If the cracks in your concrete are deep, engraving the driveway may only worsen the damage. This option costs about $3 to $6 per square feet, so a 1,000 square foot driveway will cost anywhere from $3,000 to $6,000 to etch.
Another issue that homeowners sometimes run into with their driveways is that it starts sinking in spots. This can be caused by either soil erosion or severe settling. For example, it's common for the area near a downspout to start sinking because the water eventually erodes the soil under the concrete away over time. Coupled with the weight of vehicles driving over the weakened spots, and you end up with sunken areas.
It's not necessary to completely replace the concrete in these areas, though. Instead, you can have what's called slabjacking done. The repair professionals will raise the existing concrete slab and replace the missing soil with a mix of sand, cement, and fly ash. They will then reset the concrete.
This will have the effect of releveling your driveway, so it looks great and is safe to drive on. The cost of slabjacking is about $300 to $700.
For more information about these repair options or to have your drive way fixed, contact a concrete repair contractor, such as G Batista & Associates, in your area.