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How to Repair a Crack in Your Concrete Walkway

by SGV Consulting on Oct 14, 2020

Even though concrete is one of the most durable materials, it can develop cracks. The major causes of concrete cracks are due to heavy loads on the concrete, tree roots growing underground, repeatedly freezing and thawing, and even earth shifts can cause these cracks. Concrete walkways with cracks or uneven pavement can be a tripping hazard in addition to being unsightly. The key to ensuring the longevity of your concrete is to fix cracks before they become bigger problems.

Fortunately, it is a simple and relatively inexpensive DIY project to fix cracks in concrete. And, if you're more inclined to hire concrete professionals to fix them, it’s still a good idea to know what the work entails.

Wipeout all dirt on the concrete floor

The first thing you want to do is to clean the entire surface of the area you want to fix. You’ll want to use some type of degreasing agent to ensure you get a deep clean and can remove all the great and debris. This ensures that the patching sealant will be able to adhere to the concrete.

Chisel out the cracks

Use a chisel and hammer to get rid of some major pieces in the crack. Hold the hammer to chisel the crack at an angle. This is termed "keying" to render the foundation or within the crack wider than outside. Keying allows the old crack to bond firmly with the fresh patching content.

Use a Vacuum and brush

Once you have keyed the crack, cleaning and removing all dust and waste is necessary. Use a whisk broom to remove dust and other materials and then vacuum the crack area thoroughly.

Spread the Concrete patch

Cut the nozzle of the concrete filler container and progressively fill the cracks. Mix the patch according to the maker's direction and pull it into the crack while using a mixed concrete patch. In only a couple of minutes, inspect the cracks, and see if the filler is fixed. If it does not look tight enough, you will need to add some more. Afterward, use a trowel to smooth out the cracks

Allow it to Cure

Next, you want to make sure that the crack sealant has enough time to cure. Check the instructions for the exact product you are using and follow the guidelines provided. Then recheck it to see if any additional patch is required.

Carefully Seal off the concrete patch

It's a smart idea to seal off the area after patching the concrete. Concrete generally absorbs stains readily and this can be avoided by sealing it properly after it has been prepared. A wide variety of concrete sealing materials are available, though water-based, polyurethane is a good option. In case the floor has a rugged finish, add the polyurethane to the rough surface using a broom or brush using the bristles to apply the sealer into the surface. Use a roller if it is a very smooth surface. The beauty of water-based polyurethane is that it dries fast. After only a few hours, you can apply the second coat.

Cracks in concrete are a simple job that can be repaired by even beginner DIYers. It not only improves the concrete appearance, but it also extends the concrete life by preventing further damage.

Typically, concrete cracks can be fixed and restored if the concrete is durable and well built.

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