Concrete is one of the most durable materials you can use for installations around your property. However, concrete isn’t impervious to cracks and other forms of damage. If you’re looking for ways to prevent your concrete patio from cracking, keep reading to learn a few tips that can help.
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There are many benefits to installing a concrete patio on your property—help this investment last longer by preventing cracks.
Give the Mixture Plenty of Time To Cure
Most concrete mixtures can take about a month to properly cure, averaging about 28 days. The concrete mixture needs time to reach its full strength through retaining and evaporating moisture. Avoid walking or placing outdoor furniture on your installation until it has had time to fully cure.
If you notice your concrete drying out very quickly due to hot, dry weather, consider spraying it lightly with water, especially during the first week after installation. This spray will help it retain moisture and avoid cracking early.
Choose Reinforced Concrete
Some types of concrete pours are more susceptible to cracking than others. If you expect your patio to receive heavy foot traffic or tough outdoor conditions, you may want to choose reinforced concrete during your planning phase. Reinforced concrete uses a series of wire or metal bars to strengthen the base material.
Rebar is a smart concrete addition if you’re working with a patio or other installation that has more than 5 inches of depth. The reinforcing bars will help the installation last longer, which improves its durability and reduces its chance of developing large cracks.
Seal Your Concrete Surface
Sealing your concrete patio’s surface has many benefits. The seal helps repel too much moisture, protects stamps and colors, and prevents cracking.
Sealing concrete also has aesthetic benefits, such as improving its appearance and making the patio better match your space. Overall, sealing your concrete helps maintain its quality and helps it last much longer.
Promote Drainage Around Your Patio
While moisture is crucial during the concrete curing process, too much moisture can also cause erosion around your patio. Water runoff can cause the earth underneath and around your concrete to wash away, leading to settling and eventual cracking.
It’s important to ensure your property has a proper drainage system, especially in the area around your installation. Use plantings, spouts, and other backyard accessories to reroute drainage that would normally run across your patio.
Now that you know how to prevent cracks from forming in your concrete patio, you can use these tips to help your patio last longer. Every concrete installation is bound to crack over time, but following these tips can help you preserve your concrete for as long as possible before you need to schedule repairs.