Normally, concrete would last for about 30-40 years. Although that is the ideal life expectancy, some things can affect the concrete structure’s lifespan, making some unsightly cracking, discoloration, settlement, and scaling. When you eventually come across this type of problem, you should be ready and have already decided on what option you will be taking to repair it. In fact, there could even be times that the damage requires some full-on replacement.
Problems You May Come Across When Dealing With Concrete
Although concrete has a very high life expectancy and even its great strength and durability, it can still suffer from the following damages:
- Getting worn out or tearing.
- Cracking from the weight of heavy vehicles
- Cracks caused by the roots of trees
- Stains such as oil stains
- Winter damage caused by de-icing chemicals, freeze-thaw cracking, and shovels
- Sun damage
- Divots or sunken areas caused by improper sub-grade compaction during the concrete installation
- Chipped surface
- Damage caused by poor concrete mix and installation
Signs You May Want To Watch Out For
When it comes to residential concrete repair, there are some signs that you may want to keep in mind such as Colors Fading. If you have some colored concrete to give your property some better design, then it is best to look out for signs that the concrete color is fading. It is only natural that colors would fade over a set amount of time, but at the end of the day, you can still fix these problems with a new stain application and sealer.
Another common sign you might see is some small cracks. There are some smaller cracks, about ¼ inch wide, that can be easily repaired before they turn into a bigger problem and cause more damage. Even these small damages can lead to bigger problems since water can get through these holes. Additionally, those that get in can end up freezing, causing the cracks to expand and become deeper.
Related: How to Prevent Concrete Crack
Sometimes, potholes may also emerge from the concrete structure, which is relatively similar to cracks, which should also be repaired before they can possibly cause more damage. Naturally, these potholes and cracks can be seen by people, making it a crucial factor if you want an attractive driveway.
You might also notice some areas of your concrete have sunk. These sunken parts are not leveled and properly safe to drive in which could possibly end up causing an accident. This can normally be seen right outside of your garage, but you can repair it, keeping the driveway safe. Some homeowners may also notice that the edges of your concrete are crumbling away. This is normally because the edges were too thin from the beginning of the installation. Additionally, you can solve this problem by using additional edging.
Before going through any big decisions, make sure to first consider all factors and thoroughly assess your concrete or have a professional evaluate it. If the concrete is still relatively young, instead of replacing it, you can first resolve the problems by repairing it. For surface damage that isn’t too severe and covers less than 50% of the driveway, repairs are usually the better option, especially for younger driveways.