Your driveway was supposed to last a lifetime. However, like your house, certain factors may shorten its lifespan. Likewise, your driveway also needs regular maintenance for it to stay in top condition.
So, if your driveway starts showing visible cracking, discoloration, settlement, or scaling, it might mean that it’s about time to do some repairs.
Of course, there are a lot of factors that may lead to a distressing driveway. Some of these include improperly compacted subgrade, insufficient concrete mix, exposure to terrible weather conditions, and bad placement procedures, just to name a few.
With that said, do you feel the need to repair your concrete driveway? Are you looking for the best option on how to repair your concrete driveway without spending more than what’s necessary?
If so, this article will give you tips on how to do concrete driveway repairs, and if necessary, what to look for in a concrete company Miami FL.
Concrete Driveway Repair or Total Replacement: Which One to Choose
If your driveway needs repairs, the first thing to decide on is whether your driveway needs a total replacement or not.
However, opting for a total replacement may cost a lot of money. Thus, if your concrete driveway is structurally sound, doing the necessary repairs instead of ripping the whole concrete out may be enough to restore it to good condition.
Still, suppose you can’t decide whether to do repair or total replacement. In that case, it’s best to hire a concrete driveway contractor to conduct the assessment for you. After all, they will know when a driveway needs total replacement or not.
Moreover, if you don’t really need to give your driveway a total replacement, these professionals can also present you with repair recommendations based on your driveway’s current condition.
When to Hire a Contractor
If the defects on your driveway are minor, it might be better to do it yourself. However, if there are more significant damages, it might be better to hire a concrete company Miami FL to do the job for you.
With that said, here’s a simple guide on when to repair it yourself and when to hire a contractor:
small cracks with holes less than ¼ inches – you can do this yourself
large cracks with holes bigger than ¼ inches – hire a contractor
spalling, scaling, or discoloration – hire a contractor
sinking – hire a contractor
structural damage – hire a contractor
Driveway Repair Solutions: Top 5 Ways to Repair a Concrete Driveway
If you decide to do the repairs yourself, it would be best to understand what types of repairs you can do.
In this case, to give you an idea of how to repair concrete driveways, here are the most common driveway repair solutions available, depending on the damage.
Patch or fill (small cracks)
Do this on small cracks or holes that don’t go beyond ¼ inches and don’t pose a structural threat if fixed temporarily by patching or filling.
You should also consider the fact that fillers and patches will be obvious. Therefore, this will result in a spotted overall look.
The patches are not water-tight. This means water will eventually seep into the gaps between the concrete and the fillers. This will reopen the cracks in the long run.
Filling or patching small cracks is a simple process. You can do this yourself. In this case, you only need to visit the nearest hardware store for the materials, and you’re good to go.
Concrete resurfacing (larger cracks).
This is perfect for more significant cracks or holes (¼ inches and beyond).
This is also good for spalling or those horizontal peeling or chipping on the surface.
This procedure is done to cover discoloration, as well.
This involves covering the damaged area with a concrete overlay, a thin layer of a cement-based material.
Decorative finishes such as stamping and coloring can be added, after which will give your driveway a fresh, new look.
The overlay provides additional protection to the concrete, which will help the driveway to last longer.
Concrete engraving (cracks or flaws).
This procedure involves engraving a pattern on the surface to disguise cracks or flaws.
This involves staining the concrete first and then cutting the pattern into the surface with the help of a special routing machine.
Recoloring (to revive or correct the color).
Factors such as weathering and sun exposure can result in discoloration.
You may apply a new coat of acid or water-based stain to give the concrete a new color.
It’s recommended to use a UV-resistant staining product topped with a reliable sealer for additional protection.
Slabjacking (to lift sunken concrete).
Poorly compacted subgrade, or sometimes soil erosion, may lead to your driveway slabs sinking in spots.
This procedure involves pumping a mixture of sand, cement, fly ash, and other additives under the slab. This will allow slabs to rise back to their normal position.
When conducting a concrete driveway repair, it’s best to consider how massive the damage is, the repair options you have, and your budget.
Overall, it’s generally recommended that you hire a concrete driveway Miami to help you with the whole process, as they will know what to do and help you repair the damages with fewer costs and effort.