Concrete driveways are long-lasting, sturdy, and require only minimal maintenance. Even though concrete may be more expensive to install than asphalt, it is a popular driveway construction material.
Concrete is a combination of stone particles, water, and cement mixed together. It’s pourable in its raw state and will take on the form you want. Installing a concrete driveway isn’t something that should be attempted until you’ve completed some practice. There are specialized tools, knowledge, and skill required that most do-it-yourselfers lack.
This post will go through the signs you should look for if your concrete driveway is having problems to determine whether repairs or replacement are necessary. The direction you take with a concrete driveway professional will be determined on which indicators you discover. Let’s get started!
Is your concrete driveway showing signs of aging?
The usage of a driveway will cause wear and tear over time. It’s unavoidable, and there’s not much you can do about it.
Even if you never drive on your concrete driveway, the elements will wear down the surface. The elements take their toll over time, resulting in extensive damage.
Take a moment to consider how much weight descends on or rests on the driveway—vehicles rolling over it every day, as well as those that park overnight. RVs, boats, and extra automobiles sit for days, weeks, and sometimes months on your concrete driveway
The three telltale symptoms of a concrete driveway’s deterioration are:
- Cracks – Cracks develop when the ground underneath the driveway heaves or settles, causing the concrete to break
- Discoloration – If your concrete driveway starts to show signs of discoloration, it’s a sign that the surface is breaking down. The wear and tear of vehicles driving over it causes this.
- Potholes – Potholes are usually caused by water seeping into cracks in the concrete and expanding when it freezes. This can cause serious damage to your concrete driveway if not repaired right away.
- Stains – Stains on your concrete driveway are usually from oil or grease leaks. If left untreated, they can eat away at the concrete and cause further damage.
The desire to get rid of stains and discoloration is largely a matter of personal taste when it comes to the aesthetics of your concrete driveway. However, structural flaws like cracks and potholes must be take seriously and repaired.
If you want to keep your concrete driveway in tip-top shape, you’ll need to get ahead of the problem. Delaying action may cause issues to worsen, making a simple repair into a more expensive replacement!
Should you repair or replace your concrete driveway?
Grinding down the top of existing concrete and laying a fresh new top concrete level is part of a driveway repair. Repair is ideal for dealing with persistent stains, little fractures, and tiny holes.
A driveway replacement entails removing the old driveway and replacing it with a new one. It’s a time-consuming, expensive process that requires a lot of labor hours and specialized equipment. Depending on the severity of your concrete driveway’s damage, you’ll have to decide whether repairs or replacement are necessary.
The following factors will help you make that decision:
The Age of your Driveway – The lifespan of a concrete driveway is around 30 years. If your driveway is approaching that age, it may be time for a replacement.
The Extent of the Damage – Take a close look at the cracks, potholes, and stains. If they’re widespread and deep, it’s probably time for a new driveway. On the other hand, if the damage is minimal, you can get away with repairs.
Your Budget – Concrete driveways are not cheap. They cost more than asphalt but last much longer. Replacing your driveway is a significant investment, so be sure to factor that into your budget.
The Bottom Line
If you’re having trouble deciding whether to repair or replace your concrete driveway, it’s best to consult with a professional. They can assess the damage and give you an expert opinion on the best course of action. With their help, you can make an informed decision that will save you time and money in the long run!
Let’s look at how to tell if your concrete requires repair or replacement.
The depth and length of the cracks
Examine the fractures and the cracks on your driveway. If they are only superficial and don’t go very far, you might be able to get away with a repair. This sort of damage suggests that the damage is limited to the surface but hasn’t affected the underlying structure.
It’s not just your basement that might be damaged by a water leak from the foundation; it’s also possible for the rest of your house to suffer damage as well. If any of those fractures run completely through to the foundation, you’ll need a replacement. If you wait long enough, the cracks will grow larger, which may cause problems with your home’s foundation if they are close enough to the main structure.
The length of the crack that will have to be repaired can only be determined by a concrete driveway professional. Most, if not all, provide free estimates, so there’s no reason not to hire someone with experience working on concrete driveways.
There’s a hole in the concrete driveway
Holes in concrete are usually caused by wear and tear, but they can also be the result of an accident. A small hole might not seem like a big deal, but it can turn into a crack if left unrepaired.
Also, water can seep through holes and cracks, which will eventually cause the surrounding concrete to erode. If the hole is more than a couple of inches deep, you’ll need to replace the affected section.
As with the crack issue, this problem necessitates an inspection comparable to that of a crack. Holes that do not penetrate the surface can be repaired.
If the hole reaches down to the foundation, a replacement is required.
If there are several holes, regardless of depth, it’s advisable to consult with a professional who has vast concrete expertise. A fissure can develop over time between these holes, resulting in a web of issues that might have been prevented with a minor repair if discovered in time.
The concrete driveway shows signs of instability or sinking
A fractured foundation may indicate instability and sinking. The most significant issue with these problems? They can lead to structural issues and necessitate repairs not just to the concrete driveway but also to the home itself.
Unfortunately, a foundation problem requires more than a regular solution. A specialized crew with the necessary equipment can handle your concrete driveway. If you live in the [city] area, call Philipps Specialty Paving to get a quote for your repair or replacement.
If one part of your concrete driveway flexes when you apply pressure, it needs to be replaced. Shifting implies that the foundation is damaged beneath it.
How long does a concrete driveway last?
Concrete driveways endure an average of 25-50 years. This wide range is determined by the user, weather, upkeep level, and quality of the installation.
In their concrete driveway installation, Philippe’s Specialty Paving uses only the most up-to-date technology and highest quality materials. With typical use, you can expect your concrete driveway to endure for 50 years.
If the concrete curing/hardening procedure is problematic during installation, it would significantly reduce the anticipated life span. It’s critical to choose a crew that has prior experience with the challenges that concrete poses.
The condition of the soil beneath the concrete also has an impact. There’s a higher danger of shifting if it’s on the softer side. The concrete above will be damaged by shifting. It’s something that many people don’t consider when installing a concrete driveway, but it is an issue that must be addressed.
When is the best time to install a concrete driveway?
The curing/hardening concrete procedure should be done in ideal circumstances: 70 degrees with little moisture. These conditions indicate that the fall and spring are excellent from a temperature standpoint, as long as it isn’t raining. The summer and winter can function provided the weather isn’t too hot or cold. If it’s really hot or cold outside, they’ll hold off until better ones arrive.
Concrete driveways will take longer to cure in colder regions. In more temperate climates, winter also has an effect, and quality concrete driveway professionals consider it.
In hot weather, water may be added to the surface in order to slow down the curing process. This need is particularly important during the summer. The appropriate amount of water will be determined by an experienced concrete driveway contractor.
How long does it take to repair a concrete driveway?
The length of time it takes to repair a concrete driveway is determined on whether or not you need one. If you’re thinking of fixing it rather than replacing it, keep in mind the above weather conditions: you could have to wait for optimum weather.
It may take as little as one day to repair a concrete driveway.
A full replacement takes at least two days—one for demolition and one for installation. These days might not be consecutive. The time frame of your concrete driveway project will be determined by your concrete driveway contractor.
Before driving on the surface, allow a week to pass after the job is finished. Allow a month before parking cars larger than a small automobile after work is completed. Wait at least a month before putting RVs, boats, or other vehicles back onto the surface if possible.
If you’re not sure, contact a professional
Keep informed of any changes in the condition of your car to ensure that you’re not caught off guard by an emergency requiring costly concrete driveway repairs. Even minor issues that may have been resolved can develop into major challenges if left unchecked.
Philipps Specialty Paving offers affordable, high-quality concrete services in the Atlanta, Georgia region. Our staff has decades of expertise dealing with the community’s concrete requirements and would be delighted to share our knowledge.
If you’re having any of the issues listed above with your concrete driveway, give us a call or fill out our contact form. We offer FEE-FREE estimates and will assist you in keeping your concrete driveway in excellent working order!
CLICK HERE to learn more about our concrete driveway repair services in North Ridge and nearby cities.