Why you should choose concrete driveway?
Concrete is prepared from cement, crushed stone as a filler, sand and water. A variety of additives can be added to the mixture to change or improve certain characteristics – it can be more durable, resistant to chemical attack, moisture, frost, etc.
The pros and cons of concrete coating
Concrete perfectly withstands considerable loads, has a high level of durability, allows you to perform the work yourself, without complex equipment and specialists, which significantly reduces the cost of the process.
The main advantages of concrete coating:
- Durability – up to several tens of years, if the casting was prepared a quality mixture and ensured compliance with the technology Reliability and durability.
- Resistance to a variety of external negative factors.
- High level of resistance to wear and tear.
- Excellent environmental performance.
- No need to involve professionals, special equipment, expensive tools.
- Ability to perform all stages of work independently.
The disadvantages of the concrete coating include:
- The surface deforms in severe frosts.
- Concrete is dusty, requires additional coating with sealant or primer.
- The material gains strength after 28 days.
- The cost of coating is relatively high.
- If there are cracks, repairs are required.
Choose the pavement for the driveway – which is better?
Concrete is a reliable and simple material, inexpensive, withstands considerable loads, so it can be used for the arrangement of any pavements and paths, access roads. If the concrete surface is reinforced, the coating can be used for any purposes and can withstand the weight of heavy vehicles.
The concrete mixture can be laid by yourself or ordered ready-made at the factory. You can choose the desired level of strength, improve certain characteristics through additives, increasing frost resistance, strength, etc. Therefore, the concrete is suitable for more difficult conditions and requirements.
How long does a concrete driveway last?
The durability of concrete or its service life is 30 years. It all depends on the proportions of the main components of the mixture and the additives used to improve the properties of concrete. But, as practice shows, premature failure of concrete driveway – a fairly common phenomenon. Today there are methods that allow to use the potential of concrete materials, to significantly extend the service life, to preserve the stability of the surface in its original form.
What affects the durability?
Before determining a suitable method to strengthen the surface of concrete and extend its service life, it is necessary to understand the parameters that have an impact on this:
- The composition of the material. The strength grade, water resistance class and other parameters of the cement strongly influence the strength and reliability of the driveway. It is also important to cover the concrete with sealant.
- The proportions of the main ingredients. It is known that with increasing the amount of binder component strength of concrete mortar increases, because the mixture is denser to lie down, has fewer voids, better tram.
- Vibration and soil movements.
- Wind erosion.
How to extend the service life of the concrete driveway?
There are different methods to give the concrete a fortress and pour the duration of its operation. Each of them is selected depending on the degree of influence of the factors listed above.
- The correct casting of concrete – guarantees its strength and duration of the operation.
- An important step in this method is the selection of composition and preparation of concrete mixture. Ingredients and their quantities are selected according to planned loads.
- It is equally important to properly prepare the base. The soil should be sufficiently dense and sedentary. This will prevent further deformations of the driveway.
- The drying time should be sufficient for the cement to react and the structure should not lose its monolithic value. Natural drying under a polyethylene film with periodic spraying of the concrete surface is recommended.
Timely crack embedding on the concrete driveway
During the operation period it is important to fill in the formed cracks on the concrete surface in time. They will inevitably occur due to the natural expansion of the structure. If the defect is not corrected, a wide crack will soon form and it will be more expensive to repair it.
The main reasons that destroy the concrete driveway are:
- mistakes in design and pouring errors;
- poor quality ingredients of the mixture;
- exceeding the load norms;
- reinforcement corrosion;
- fluctuations in the percentage of moisture inside the concrete;
- sharp and frequent temperature fluctuations;
- aggressive impact and mechanical wear of the surface;
- natural deformation of the material.