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How To Figure Out When To Repair Or Replace Concrete

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One of the biggest challenges in any home improvement project is deciding whether it might be more effective in terms of time and money to repair or replace something, and this is especially the case when dealing with concrete. A lot of issues come into play, including demolition, underlying structures, the current use of an area and total surface size. Before you get into a concrete repair effort, you should examine the costs and benefits of the process.


The overall size of a surface that might have to be replaced is a big part of the equation. Asking a concrete replacement services contractor to deal with thousands of square feet of work may simply not be cost-effective, especially when the trouble is relatively isolated. If it appears that a problem can be contained, it may be simpler to either perform repairs or to limit replacement work to one slab.

Underlying Problems

One of the most compelling reasons to opt for repair over replacement is the presence of something challenging underneath or within the concrete. For example, having rebar inside a surface is likely to drive the concrete replacement cost up significantly since the contractor will likely have to bring in specialized equipment. Have a professional check for the presence of pipes, rebar, and other materials that might make a job complicated before you decide to move ahead with a job.

Level of Compromise

Once a concrete slab has begun to show significant signs of breaking up, the decision to replace has largely been made for you, especially if the slabs have begun to shift up and down. Catching cracks early in the process is critical, particularly if you'd like to tackle concrete repair as a DIY project with a patch kit or a filler. The width of cracks also matters as ones less than 1/4-inch wide can be typically filled by a non-professional. Once you start getting about 1/2 an inch in width replacement begins to become a cost-effective option.

Use Matters

The reality is that your tolerance of edges, cracks, and upthrusts will largely be dictated by the use of a surface. It's common for people to ignore the breakdown of non-structural concrete in basement floors. Conversely, when the material is used as a base for something like an asphalt driveway, a paving contractor might refuse to resurface the area until a concrete repair services contractor fixed it.