Although a highly durable and robust building material, concrete does require a certain amount of care and attention, and a heavy traffic area such as a driveway will need close attention to remain in the best condition possible. Here are a few handy tips for looking after yours…
1. Remove Stains ASAP
It may sound like something that won’t affect your concrete surface too much, but failing to clean up oil spillages or other stains immediately may mean that the use of heavy duty, non-concrete-friendly chemicals are required further down the line. Pressure washing is the best way of going about this, and is advised before applying or reapplying a seal to the surface.
2. Repair Cracks
Ensuring that all cracks are repaired before they become a major issue is important to maintaining a healthy driveway. Cracks allow water to filter through, damaging the subgrade and affecting the structural integrity of the concrete above. Dirt and grit can clog up these fractures too, creating an uneven surface and running the risk of weeds growing between the joints.
3. Regular Sealing
Perhaps the best way to actively protect your driveway, sealing is most effective if carried out regularly – experts suggest this should occur 6 months after the concrete is laid, and every 2 to 3 years afterwards depending on regularity of use and the conditions it is exposed to. Sealing is a process whereby a sealant is applied to the surface of the concrete in order to prevent corrosion and reduce damage, and different types of sealer are required for different surfaces. The solution also fills pores that might otherwise collect dirt and absorb water.
4. Keep it Clean
It’s not just oil slicks and stains that need immediate attention; moss and algae can cause considerable damage to the driveway’s sealant over time – not to mention causing it to look unsightly. Using chemical solutions that are not harmful to concrete is the best solution, and a full clean should be carried out before applying any sealer to the surfaces.
5. Avoid De-icing
Although ensuring that your driveway doesn’t become slippery during periods of icy weather is important to avoiding slips and falls, try to avoid using de-icers on your surface where possible. Many de-icers that are not designed for use on concrete contain chemicals that can be harmful to the driveway and any sealant applied to it. As concrete requires a certain amount of warmer weather to mature and form a robust surface after being laid, applying de-icer to a driveway can hinder this process. Using de-icers over winter can also see a constant cycle of freezing and thawing of moisture, putting strain on the surface and risking straining and spalling.
The experts at All Mix Concrete are specialists in the provision of all domestic and commercial concrete services, supplying onsite mixed concrete for driveways and garage bases, among other applications. Our team are also on hand to supply advice and information regarding the best way to protect your driveway from damage and wear and tear, so don’t hesitate to get in touch today. We cover customers in the region of Manchester.