Although residential and commercial concrete structures can differ greatly, they both have one thing in common. Both need regular maintenance and repair to last a long time. It’s also important to tackle issues with concrete quickly before they worsen.
#1 Pay Attention to Maintenance at Home
The best way to have a long-lasting concrete project at home is to make sure that it’s built correctly.
If you’re taking on a project at home, then start by clearing the area of any objects or materials that could affect its structural integrity. Remove grass, rocks, trees, shrubs, and even old concrete. Keep going till there’s nothing there. Carefully prepare a subbase with granular fill. Then, prepare a form to contain it if necessary.
Mix your concrete correctly. Use one part cement, two parts sand, and four parts gravel. Mix the dry portions and then add the correct amount of water to bind all the components together. After building your structure, cure and seal the concrete.
A correctly built concrete structure is only half the job. You must also pay attention to maintenance. Although concrete is durable, it’s not invulnerable. Exposure to extreme temperatures such as freezing rain, snow, heat, and pressure, can wear it down.
If the structure is experiencing extreme weather, then it may get damaged. The first sign of this is cracking. Some minor cracks are normal and can show up over time. However, if the cracks are wide and deep, then it may be a cause for concern.
You may try repairing cracks yourself, but without the skill, training, and materials, you could do more harm than good. For example, if you damage the cracks further, then rain might pass through and result in expensive structural damage. Water can pool on wider cracks and cause more problems. If someone trips over the them, then you may be held liable. Moreover, if such cracks are on a driveway, then they could result in serious and costly damage to vehicles over time.
#2 Hire a Professional to Fix Commercial Concrete Structures
Whether you need a contractor for a residential or commercial project, it’s advisable to hire a company that specializes in concrete crack repair and is considered experienced and reputable. Such a contractor may use concrete drills, jackhammers, concrete cutting saws, crack chasing saws to repair and seal the concrete. If the structure needs major repair, they can offer slot stitching, which is usually less intrusive to a slab and requires less backfill material.
Another option for concrete repair is the dowel bar retrofit. This is a method to reinforce cracks on highway pavements with the insertion of steel dowel bars in slots cut across the cracks. First, slots are made with the help of a saw or a jackhammer. Next, the dowels are placed and then backfilled with typically with grout. Afterwards, the pavement is restored, sometimes with a Diamond Ground product.
Whether it’s a residential or commercial concrete structure, it’s important to pay attention to maintenance for the sake of its longevity. Professional contractors with a reputation for excellence with all sorts of concrete projects will give you the best results.