(BPT) - If you’ve ever seen fresh concrete poured for a sidewalk or driveway, it can be difficult to imagine how that smooth, strong surface can begin to crack over time. Just like many outdoor surfaces, concrete weakens from everyday wear and tear. Cracks can develop from temperature changes, other weather conditions, ground movement and more.
From sidewalks and patios to driveways and steps, concrete repair is an essential spring and summer task. Unattended cracks or holes can become unsafe, cause leaks, or require you to completely start over with a new pour. Bottom line, concrete will not improve on its own!
Repairing small cracks prevents future problems, but if you’ve put it off, no need to worry. You can repair concrete cracks in a few simple steps — just in time for hosting summer parties and activities.
What you’ll need:
Before you get started, check the weather forecast. Do not plan a crack-filling project if rain is expected within 24 hours.
Then, your first step to fixing a crack is to clean it out. Chisel out any debris inside the crack and use a brush to clean any loose dust, dirt or gravel from the surface. You can also try using a leaf blower to clear away unwanted material.
If you’re working with a crack that is deeper than one quarter inch, you’ll want to use a filler first, such as all-purpose sand. Fill the crack with sand to within one quarter inch of the surface. When combined with a sealant, this will ensure the crack is completely sealed.
To quickly fix cracks on any horizontal concrete surface, Quikrete Concrete Crack Seal is one of the easiest products to use. It’s a pre-mixed blend of latex emulsion that is formulated to fill cracks in horizontal concrete surfaces.
Start by shaking the container to make sure the product is blended. Next, cut the spout to make a 1/4-inch to 3/8-inch opening. Squeeze the formula into the crack, working slowly and overfilling slightly as the product will shrink. Quikrete Concrete Crack Seal is self-leveling, and the color blends with gray concrete.
After pouring the first layer of sealant, wait 24 hours for it to cure. The sealing product will level itself into the crack as it dries. If you need to apply another layer, you can do so after a day.
Consider a more permanent fix
Crack sealing is a great low-cost, quick fix, but if you’re experiencing multiple cracks, it may be time to consider a more complete solution. Sealing your cracks now will prevent future damage and give you time to plan for that bigger project.
Get your outdoor spaces ready for summer with fast concrete repair that fits any budget. Follow these tips for a successful DIY project.