Doing It Yourself? Five Trade Secrets You Need for Flawless and Safe Concrete Repair
Repairing your own concrete cracks can be intimidating, but with the right tricks, you can easily make it look like you paid for a professional repair. If you are tired of unsightly or dangerous cracks on your driveway or other concrete, take a look at these trade secrets. They will lead you toward success:
1. Apply adhesive around the sides of large cracks or holes
Although not necessary when filling small cracks, this step certainly makes a huge difference when you are filling a large crack or a hole. Before you start applying your filler or your concrete mix, grab a bit of adhesive.
Simply, paint the adhesive along the sides of the crack. This helps the concrete mixture to adhere to the sides of the crack, and prevents it from shrinking from them.
2. Pour sand into deep cracks or holes
Before filling any cracks or holes, remove dirt and debris so they don't mix with the filler and make it look messy or adulterated. Once the debris are gone, if you have a deep hole, fill it with sand almost to the top. Then, add the concrete filler on top of that.
Doing this step provides a base layer to the crack filler, and it helps to prevent unwanted settling.
3. Don't forget to feather
To make your crack filler match the surrounding concrete, you want to feather it with a trowel. Gently brush the trowel over the concrete by flicking your wrist back and forth. That should make a series of "feathers" that create a seamless blend with the surrounding concrete.
4. Use plastic to lock in moisture
The rate at which your concrete patch dries affects how the concrete cures. In most cases, you want to draw out the curing process so that it is relatively slow. To do this, you need to keep the patch moist.
It doesn't need to be soaking wet. Instead, you simply want to spray the patch with water from a spray bottle once a day, and then, you want to cover it with plastic wrap to lock in the moisture.
5. Use pH-neutral soap
Although you are only working with concrete or filler for a relatively short amount of time, be aware of concrete burns. These irritations happen when wet concrete dries on the skin and causes microscopic damage.
To prevent these injuries, wear gloves and long-sleeved shirts. Also, avoid wearing watches as wet concrete can build up under their straps. Finally, have a pH neutral soap on hand, so that you can immediately wash off concrete and restore the natural balance of your skin.
For more information about concrete, contact a company like Ellcon.