How To Prepare Concrete Cracks For Repair

14 February 2017
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If you have a parking lot in front of your business that is made out of concrete, then you may notice some cracks forming in the material over time. These cracks may signify that the concrete needs to be resurfaced. This is necessary if cracks are long and wide and if the parking area is uneven. However, if you see small cracks that are only a few inches long, then you can repair them yourself. Repairs are only long lasting if you prepare the cracks properly. Keep reading to learn about proper preparation methods. 

Widen The Cracks

Wide cracks indicate that your concrete surface may need extensive repairs. However, slim cracks cannot be repaired easily without widening them. You will need to chisel the cracks to make sure that the repair material can stick to the concrete and cure properly. Once the repair is made, the area will be strong and secure, so you do not have to worry about weakening the area and causing the need for future repairs. 

To widen the cracks, you will need something called a masonry chisel. This type of chisel is appropriate for use with concrete. You will need a hammer or rubber mallet as well. The proper chiseling technique is called keying and this allows the bottom edge of the crack to be larger than the openings. The result is a wide area at the bottom where more patch material can harden and bind to the old concrete. 

To chisel correctly, insert the chisel into the crack and angle the bottom part of the chisel to the right. Use the hammer to force the chisel down. Work along the crack and then angle the chisel to the left. Work along the crack once again.

Clean The Cracks

The keying technique may cause some large formations of concrete to remain inside the damaged area. Do not try to pry out the chunks of concrete. You will need to remove the smaller pieces and the concrete dust through before you can add your patch material. Use a broom to clean away dust and debris from the top of the crack. Use a shop vacuum to clean out the crack afterwards. 

Do not use water to clear the debris away. If you do this, then you will have to wait for the concrete to dry completely before you can patch the crack. 

Once the crack is clean, you can mix up your patch compound and insert it into the crack. It is wise to use a small squirt bottle to add the filler material. This will allow you to be more exact with the repair since the outside of the crack will not be as wide as the inside. Contact a company like A & S Pavement Maintenance to learn more.