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A driveway is like a large welcome mat for your home. It's the first thing people see when they visit and the last thing they drive away from. The beauty of concrete can't be paralleled, especially if you choose to enrich it with some decorative aspects such as staining and or stamping. Concrete will last up to three times as long as asphalt so this makes concrete cheaper in the long run with less maintenance, resurfacing, and replacement costs. If your worried about safety the non-skid surface of concrete makes it easier to walk on, especially when it's wet and in the winter when ice forms.
What Causes Cracks in Stamped Concrete Driveways?
Stamped concrete driveways are a beauty to see; these works of art may resemble bricks, natural rocks, pavers or modern designs in different hues. Unfortunately, cracks do appear for a number of reasons. The five most common causes of breaks are overly rapid drying, extra water, a lack of joints, wrong strength and improper preparation. The best preventative measure any owner can take is to use a qualified concrete expert with a proven record of great, long-lasting driveways.
Two of the most common problems with driveways involve water applications. To prevent the slab from drying too quickly, the top must be kept moist until the thick section cures. However, too much water in the mud weakens the concrete mixture. Because wetter consistencies are faster to pour, some inexperienced installers use thinner mixes. As the water evaporates, though, the concrete shrinks and pulls apart.
Joints control concrete cracks; the cracks occur in these pre-determined places. The thickness of the concrete establishes where these joints are placed. Not only do joints help with curing problems, but they also allow natural expansion and contraction caused by weather changes. Like most other materials, concrete expands with heat and contracts with cold.
A driveway designed for a minivan will not hold a loaded concrete truck without damage. Matching the strength and depth of driving pads to their intended use helps prevent cracks and other problems. This one-time investment will pay off in the long run with long-lasting, problem-free designer entrance pads.
When professionals prepare a driveway base, they carefully inspect the ground. Although this entrance can be poured right on the native soil in some cases, most of the time a better base is required. The ground may be compacted and base material like small gravel or sand added to form a solid pad of strength and stability.
Although no one can guarantee a solid, smooth entrance to the garage, hiring a cement professional increases your odds of getting durable, unbroken stamped concrete driveways. Easter Concrete Contracting professionals know how to get, pour and dry the right mixture over a prepared base.