Lifting Concrete Sidewalks and Filling in Cracks

Many construction materials are used around the world today, from wood to plastic to metal, and let’s not forget concrete, either. In fact, concrete is one of the oldest construction materials of all, and ancient civilizations made primitive concrete with aggregate and cement. Of course, today’s concrete is even more practical, having the benefit of modern science and engineering to make the most efficient materials possible. The basic premise is still fairly similar, though; aggregate, water, and cement are mixed, and then poured into place and allowed to cure, or harden. Still, for all of concrete’s advantages, it can suffer from maintenance issues or old age, and it may even sag into the ground and develop cracks. So, homeowners can call upon concrete crack repair services to perform what is called cement raising, or concrete lifting, to fix a damaged sidewalk in their neighborhood. Concrete patios that are not attached to the house can also benefit from cement raising and similar services. Smaller cracks can even be repaired without the need of professional services.

On Concrete

Concrete, as mentioned above, must be mixed and then poured into place and given a chance to cure. What is concrete used to build? It can make anything from patios and sidewalks for a neighborhood all the way to dams, highway overpasses, and of course, building foundations. One of the first steps to constructing a building is laying its foundation, which means hiring concrete services to pour all that concrete into the foundation and allow it to cure fully. Workers can even use elongated rakes to smooth out the surface during this process. Not only that, but more and more commercial buildings are also featuring concrete floors, rather than tile or granite ones. Concrete is smooth and hard, and if it is treated, then it is even more effective. Once treated, concrete flooring’s weight bearing capacity is expanded, and the floor is resistant to stains and can be easily painted. Warehouses or factories can have their concrete floors painted with arrows and markings for employees’ reference.

Ordinary concrete has a PSI strength (pounds per square inch) of 3,000, but some of the strongest concrete has an impressive 20,000 PSI rating. But not even this concrete is truly indestructible. Sometimes, workers will need to repair cracks or lift up sagged sections of the concrete.

Fixing Compromised Concrete

Repairing a dam or a highway overpass is a large commercial effort. By contrast, homeowners may concern themselves with a damaged concrete patio or a sagged sidewalk. What is going wrong here? Concrete may sag into the ground if the earth under it is too heavy with water and starts sinking. As a result, a portion of the sidewalk sinks into the ground, and the difference in elevation strains the concrete and will put cracks and other imperfections in it. Such uneven, damaged concrete is not only unsightly, but a tripping hazard for pedestrians and rough for vehicles like bicycles or scooters to travel on. So, cement raising must be done, and this calls for professional aid.

Cement raising is performed when the workers use machines and pumps to inject materials under the compromised concrete. These materials will then expand, and this pushes up the damaged concrete and returns it to its original elevation. Once that is done, the workers can fill in the remaining cracks or gaps with more material, and this results in a fully repaired and smooth sidewalk. The same can be done for concrete patios that are not attached to the house.

A homeowner can also perform limited concrete repair all on their own, such as for minor or superficial damage on their concrete patio. This requires the use of concrete repair kits, which can be found at hardware stores. The user can inject materials into the damaged concrete, and by means of capillary action, the materials seep in and harden, to fill up all gaps and restore the concrete’s physical integrity and aesthetics.

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