Concrete Pavements: Three Patch Repair Options for Cracks
Concrete pavements and driveways are ideal for residential properties. This building material is resilient under pressure, durable and can be customised with texturing tools and colours to improve visual appeal. Unfortunately, concrete surfaces are vulnerable to damage, and this often manifests in form of cracks. The issue can be primarily attributed to poor pavement foundation, heavy-duty usage and porosity of the concrete. If you have identified cracks in your home's concrete pavements, here are the main patching options to consider during repair.
Epoxy Resin Injection
Epoxy resin is a perfect polymeric material to consider using when patching up cracks. This type of product can be purchased from hardware stores under different brand names. Basically, the patching material is available in two packages: the epoxy and a hardener. The pure epoxy has poor mechanical and thermal properties when used independently. However, when mixed with the hardener, a reaction occurs and the material forms resilient putty which can be injected into the crack.
The epoxy resin injection is the most suitable solution for DIY concrete crack repair. You will only need to clean out the cracks, prepare the resin and deliver it into the crack using a caulking gun. When the resin cures, it will form an adhesive seal and prevent the concrete from shifting. You should note that there are also alternative polyurethane repair foam products. These patching products are cheaper and easier to use, but the seal is not ideal for structural repair.
If the concrete surfaces in your homes have wide cracks, you should consider using cement to seal the damage. Epoxy resin or polyurethane would be unsuitable because of the large quantities of material required to fill the crack. When preparing this type of mixture, you can use cement and water only or include sand, depending on the total width of the crack. In simple terms, the sand will increase the volume of the repair mixture without compromising the quality of the product. When sealing the crack, you must sweep and flush out general dirt before packing the mixture. This will improve the adhesion of the cement to the walls of the existing concrete.
Cracks in concrete pavements and driveways can be dormant, which means that their size has not changed over a long time. If this is the type of damage that you want to repair, you should choose the dry packing method. Basically, this involves filling the crack with mortar made with low water content. The material will experience minimal shrinkage, ensuring long-term stability.
If you find the process wholly overwhelming, consider contacting a concrete repair specialist to get the job done.