Dealing With Concrete Walkways Or Driveways That Are Sinking

Posted on: 22 May 2019

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Concrete slabs can start to settle over time. The soil starts to compact or can erode from under the slab, causing a void space. The concrete will no longer be supported and can crack then create a hole or depression in the concrete. There are some solutions to this problem but you will need to hire a contractor with the right tools and experience to do the job.

Inspecting the Damage

Having the damaged concrete repaired starts with an inspection of the concrete and the soil under it. If the soil is stable, the concrete may be able to be raised back into place and supported from underneath. If the concrete is in good shape, lifting it can save a lot of money and avoid replacing the concrete.

The Process

Raising the concrete is accomplished using a polymer that is injected under the concrete. Holes are drilled into the concrete and the polymer is pumped in to fill the void underneath. The concrete height is monitored as the polymer is pumped in and when the concrete is level, the polymer is left to cure and stabilize the area. 

If too much polymer is forced under the concrete, it can create a high spot in the concrete surface. The high spot is almost as much of a problem as the hole you are trying to get rid of so it is important to get the amount of material under the concrete is right.

Finding a Contractor

There are many different concrete lifting contractors that may offer solutions for you, but if you want to lift the existing concrete, you need a contractor that specializes in concrete lifting. If you find a contractor that advertises this service, talk to them about their experience level is. If you have a large section of concrete to lift, it has to be done correctly and the slab needs to settle out and be level when the job is done. 

Settling Over Time

The polymer that is used to support the concrete will not settle but the soil under it can over time. If the concrete starts to sag over time, the contractor may be able to add more support but it will depend on the soil compaction and the likelihood of further sagging later. You may not have any choice other than to remove and replace the concrete at that point but talk to the contractor that did the work for you. They may have a solution to further stabilize the soil and avoid pouring new concrete.